What’s the difference between routine and ritual?
Maybe the word ‘ritual’ reminds you of that friend with all the crystals, or the self- proclaimed spiritual gurus floating around TikTok?
Here’s a secret: the only difference between a routine and a ritual is your perception! Anything can be transformed from mundane to imaginative and special with the help of mindfulness.
Real talk: Where our attention goes, energy flows.
Most of the time, all we need are just a few moments — just a few moments everyday. By harnessing the power of mindfulness, we can create rituals that can positively impact our well-being and those that interact with us.
How to create rituals with mindfulness
But what is mindfulness? It’s simply by being intentional about where you place your attention.
This could be everything from brushing your teeth, pouring your morning tea or coffee or applying your skincare. It might be obvious, but how many times while doing one thing you’re thinking about something else?
Humans are actually not designed to multitask. The demands of our modern world might have us constantly context switching between different tasks, but it’s actually impossible for our minds to really focus on more than any one thing at a time. Rituals introduce incredibly practical, human behavior.
How to create your own rituals
Here are a few tips for creating and maintaining rituals:
- Any regular activity you already do can become a ritual just by paying attention to it.
- Make your rituals non-negotiable: you don’t think about doing them, you just do it, like brushing your teeth. They become embedded in daily life so you don’t have to think about whether or not you have time or if you want to, you just do it.
- When trying to build new habits or create new rituals, try pairing it with a habit that you already have. For example, if you’re working on developing a meditation practice or making your bed every day (#adulting), try pairing it right after you brush or shower in the morning. This removes the barrier of needing to carve out time for something new and instead just extends the amount of time you’re spending on something that’s already embedded. The rest of the timing will figure itself out 🙂
- Don’t beat yourself up if you miss a day! It happens to all of us — even after years of practice. My best advice is to try not to miss more than one day in a row. When you skip multiple days it’s easy to forget and new habits fall by the wayside.
- Same time, same place: It’s easier to build a habit if you incorporate it into your day at the same time at the same place. There’s something that sticks about returning to something day in day out, and it makes it easier to develop consistency — like going to the same workout class with the same instructor every week (ya know, when that was a thing) or meeting with your therapist at the same time every week.
- Find a buddy! Accountability works y’all. It’s been proven that we’re 4x more likely to follow through with building habits when we have an accountability buddy. Everything’s better with friends! Plus it’ll give you a chance to share your experiences with each other – (t)winning!
Drop the routine, bring on the ritual. Let this secret weapon elevate your day to day and feel empowered knowing you can create a mindful moment out of almost anything!