Daily Rituals by Cindy Stradling CSP, CPC

As you move toward a new goal, it’s likely you feel a need to be agile and flexible. While the ability to shift focus and priorities as needed is important, it is also very important to stick to those routines and rituals that are important in your life. Often people fail to recognize how rituals can keep us focused and balanced. Here are three benefits you can gain from sticking to important rituals in your life.

1. Rituals can reduce stress. Many of your routines have an unconscious calming effect. Taking few minutes meditating or reading the newspaper in the morning may be just what you need to clear your mind for the day. The five minute check-in with your spouse at lunch time everyday may serve to keep the two of you connected, helping you to focus on other tasks the rest of the day.

2. Rituals are often healthy. Many of our rituals are inherently healthy. From a morning shower to stretches before bed, routines that are designed to keep you strong are critical to health and happiness.

3. Routines help minimize the strain of change. When much of your life is in flux, it is very comforting to have a few things you can count on. Just like your best friend or your favorite pillow, your favorite rituals serve to give your life continuity in a sea of uncertainty.

If you have not given a lot of thought your rituals, it might be time to consider how these make your life more predictable, comfortable and stable. Ask yourself: “Have I let some of my favorite rituals take a back seat during busy times at work?” If so, have you felt greater stress levels or lower levels of satisfaction in your life?

Take the time to analyze some of your most important rituals and determine which ones bring the most value in your life. If time is limited, evaluate which rituals and routines provide the most satisfaction, and start by incorporating those. You might be amazed at the improvement you see in your satisfaction both at home and at work.