This is a step-by-step guide on exactly how to make a daily routine for yourself the right way!
Disclaimer – This post may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my link, at no extra cost to you.
I’m sure you’ve heard that “the secret to your success lies in your daily routine”.
Even more sure that you’ve already browsed the entire internet to learn about the best daily routine habits you should incorporate.
Now, with this plethora of information, it can be really confusing trying to figure out where to actually start.
Sometimes all you need is a step-by-step guide telling you exactly how to create a daily routine that works for you.
Don’t worry I’ve got it covered!
Here’s a 11 step guide that you can *literally* start using today.
This is the exact process that I use to plan my daily routine, specially when I fall off tracks! And I always end up feeling so much more organized and on top of things.
I’ve also added 8 genius tips that’ll help you actually stay consistent with this routine, at the end of this post. Because just creating a daily routine won’t do anything!
how to make a daily routine for yourself
Step 1 : Identify Your Everyday tasks/goals
Before asking how to make a daily routine for yourself, ask ‘what are your daily goals that you want to focus on with this daily routine?’
I mean, what is it that you are struggling with that’s making you start a daily routine NOW? Maybe you want to stop wasting time and be more productive.
Or maybe you finally want to start focusing on some healthy habits everyday. Or want to prioritize rest.
Write down some things that you can do everyday to achieve these goals. These are your daily tasks. Having these goals set out will really help you be more intentional while planning your days.
Related Post : 21 ‘No-Nonsense’ Daily Goals For Success
Step 2 : divide your day in chunks
Basically, it’s easier to create a daily routine and to actually follow it, if it’s broken down in bite size pieces.
The simplest way to do this is to divide your day in 3 parts – mornings, afternoon & evenings.
Mornings – Your morning tasks are essentially the most important part of your daily routine. Because your mornings set the tone for the rest of the day.
Afternoon – This is usually the block where you’re getting most of your work related tasks done.
Evenings – Use your evenings to focus on your personal life. Starting with having a after work wind down routine.
You can also time block your days hourly if that helps you get a better idea. Just don’t let it overwhelm you!
step 3 : prioritize your mornings
Mornings are the most important part of your daily routine. Use your mornings to focus on your goals and priorities.
So, if you want to start reading more, have your uninterrupted reading time in the morning. If you want to be more productive, use the mornings to work on your tasks that require more focus.
And of course, if you want to prioritize health, start a healthy morning routine.
Mornings are the best time to start working on yourself, mainly because there are so little distractions in the mornings.
step 4 : note down your Appointments in your planner
If you have any meetings and appointments or other non-negotiables, note them down in your daily planner.
You should ideally be doing this the night before, so that you wake up in the morning knowing exactly what meetings you have today. Or do it weekly, so you’re better prepared for the meetings.
This will also give you a clear idea on how much time you’ve actually got for the rest of your tasks.
step 5 : now, make your to-do list the right way
Unpopular opinion, but I don’t think making to-do lists in the morning works. Instead, before going to bed, do a brain dump of all the things you need to get done tomorrow.
And prioritize your top three. Identify, 3 tasks that you need to get done today no matter what. I also have a separate column for your top priorities in the 2023 Ultimate Planner.
Now focus on finishing these tasks before 12pm. At least, make your best effort to!
If it gets done before 12, great! Now you have your entire day to work on the “would be nice” tasks. And if not, you’d still be closer to finishing them soon.
Also, schedule your personal goals in your daily routine (see Step 1), like evening walks, or after work cleaning.
step 6 : have a work cut off time
Pick a time, say 6 pm, after which you’re not allowed to work! I mean, you’ve got a life outside of work too.
And having a work cut off time creates a sense of urgency in your days, that ends up making you more productive.
When you know you can’t work after 6 pm, you try to get as much done as possible before the deadline, rather than deferring work until later.
In fact, make some after-work plans that you can’t back out from, so you actually end up following your cut off time.
Related Post : How To Be More Productive And Motivated
step 7 : create a good vibes List
Create a good vibes list – a list of all the little things that bring you good vibes. Whether it’s getting your morning coffee, talking to your bestfriend, or working from a café.
Now, add as many things from this list as you can to your daily routine. Having a daily routine that only focuses on productivity as well as self care can be game changing.
This is one of the things that’ll make you WANT to follow your daily routine, because you actually enjoy it!
step 8 : rest time
I know rest is the last thing on your mind, when you think about creating a daily routine. But the thing is, you can’t expect yourself to be productive if you’re not allowing yourself to rest.
And have a plan for your rest time. Make a list of all the things you’d want to do while resting – reading a romcom, watching a Netflix episode, or calling your bestfriend.
And then decide what you feel like doing in the moment.
This helps you be more intentional with your rest time, because otherwise, you’re gonna spend your time doing mindless activities, like scrolling through Instagram. That’ll only end up exhausting you!
step 9 : have some “extra” time – for flexibility
The best tip on how to make a daily routine for yourself that you actually follow, is to keep it flexible.
The things is, life happens! Things don’t always go according to plan, something new might pop up, or a task might take longer than expected.
You don’t want to throw your plan out the window when that happens. Keep your plans flexible. Add meal times to your routine.
Another thing you can do is, add some extra time to your routine – when you’re not supposed to do anything but the left out work.
If having an extra hour daily seems impractical, you can have a 2 hour slot on Friday where you finish the left over work from the week.
step 10 : daily check-in cuz you learn & improve
Always end your day with a little check-in. The key to making a daily routine work FOR you is to continuously analyze and improve it.
So, take 5 minutes to answer these questions,
- What worked for you today?
- What didn’t work for you? How can you avoid the same problem in the future?
- What time of the day are you most productive?
- How can you improve your routine?
Step 11 : Have a fixed sleep and wake up time
This keeps your sleep schedule consistent. And regulates your body clock, so you automatically start getting up and falling asleep at the same time.
It’s easier to plan your daily routine when you know your exact “work timings”. And of course, set aside 7-8 hrs in your daily routine for proper sleep.
tips that’ll make you actually follow the plan
1. try different things see what works for you
There’s no one size fit all when it comes to ‘daily routines’. So, try and experiment different things to find out what works for you.
You might be able to get more done with a strict time-blocked routine, or maybe keeping it flexible is more your thing.
But until you start following a routine and do your daily check-ins, you’ll never know.
2. leave visual cues
The idea is to make things as simple for you as possible!
If you’re starting to build new habits with this daily routine, leave visual cues as your reminders.
For eg : If you want to start going to the gym, leave your gym clothes out at night. Or if you want to start drinking more water, carry a water bottle with yourself all day.
Trust me, I carry my Stanley cup with me all the time and it truly works!
3. use habit trackers to track your progress
It’s so important to track your progress and habit trackers are the simplest way to do it. Of course, they help you see what goals are you most inconsistent with.
But they also motivate you to keep up the consistency streak.
Keep these habits/goals actionable, so you have a “YES” or “No” answer, to whether or not you did something today.
Related Post : 18 Genius Daily Healthy Habits List
4. list of everything you got done today
Call it your “Ta-Da” list! This list will specially help you on days when you feel like you’re not doing enough.
A lot of times, you quit a routine because you feel that you’re not able to get enough done.
Making a ta-da list will help you see how much you got done, which on most days, is more than what you give yourself credit for!
5. start with small goals
Don’t make an overly complicated daily routine to begin with. This is the biggest mistake that all beginners make – trying to start 10 new things at once.
This only results in overwhelm and confusion.
Create a simple daily routine at the beginning, where you’re focusing on no more than 1-3 things at a time. And once you get a hang of it, you can start upgrading it.
6. routines might change as you go through different seasons of life
Your days won’t always look the same, right? Then how can you expect to follow the same daily routine forever.
Don’t hesitate to change your daily routine, every time you feel like it’s not working for you.
Spending 2 hrs at the gym might make sense for your life right now, but you might need to cut it down to a 30 min yoga session in your busy seasons of life.
7. never skip two days in a row
The famous two-day habit building routine!
Basically, whenever you’re building a new habit, consistency is key. If you end up skipping a day, due to whatever reason, don’t use it as an excuse to quit your routine altogether.
Just get back at it the next day.
8. reward yourself
Give yourself some incentive at the end of the week, if you follow your daily routine consistently throughout the week.
Maybe ordering your fav pasta on Saturday, or sleep-in a little extra on a sunday.
This could be your motivation to stay consistent throughout the week, especially on days when you feel like quitting.
This post is a step-by-step guide on exactly how to make a daily routine for yourself the right way!