We Are What We Repeatedly Do

“We are what we repeatedly do. 

Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”

Will Durant

  My home is like a ship. There are many tasks that go on in any given day and depending on how the tasks go and what the weather is like, the ship can sink or sail. Routines help our ship stay on course no matter what the day may bring.

  With six children, it is important that everyone in our home knows their task, so if the captain is away, or sick… each person can perform their duties to the best of their ability and things will still carry on. The older kids even know my tasks so if I was down and out for a period of time, they could fill in and all would not be lost.

The best way I have been able to keep order in our home and chaos at a minimum, is to have simple routines in place. The emphasis being on simple… I want it to be manageable and easy to remember.

  For me, this looks like dividing our world into chunks. We have a daily routine that is broken up into a morning routine, chore routine, school routine, afternoon routine, and evening routine.

  Notice I am not using the word “schedule”.

  I feel like schedules were confining and unrealistic for our family. I could not guarantee that at 9am we would be able to begin school because at 9am my toddler might be streaking naked through the house, the baby trying to eat the dog’s food, and my nine year old may have sustained yet another injury while doing stunts in the backyard as he was taking care of the compost.

  Life in my house is unpredictable in many ways. I cannot account for every circumstance or situation but I can have a general idea of what the flow of the day will look like.

  According to Webster’s dictionary a routine is a regular course of procedure. When you do something often enough, it becomes a habit. Good or bad, we all have habits and those habits are what become our routines. Sometimes bad habits creep into our daily routines. The good news is that when we recognize them we can make a change. Maybe staying up too late is becoming a habit and you are waking up drained, causing you to start pushing bedtime earlier so you can get the rest your body needs to start the day energized.

  As seasons of life change, so do our routines. My routine with a newborn looks different than my routine once children are potty trained. My routine when I worked outside the home is different from how it looks now as a stay at home mom. My daily rituals will look different from yours because each person is in a different season of life and what is important to me may not be what is important to you.

  In order to come up with a routine that realistically works, think about your day to day. What tasks need to happen? What are the basics that you want to accomplish each day that will add to your own personal peace? What are you already doing that is working? What are you doing that is not working? Are there goals that you would like to accomplish but haven’t taken any steps towards meeting? Right now, take note of what you accomplish each day. Jot down what you do during the week that you need to make time for, like grocery shopping, paying the bills, or coffee with your friends. What are you already doing that is a habit? Do you make your bed each morning? Do you schedule your conference calls for after lunch? Do you take a walk after dinner? Maybe there are habits you want to change or goals that you want to achieve that you want to create a daily habit for, like exercising. Be mindful this week of what you do in your comings and goings and please come back to join me next week as I share my daily routine along with tips on how I stay on track during the hard days.

  Please feel free to reach out and ask questions or share what is working for you in your day to day by using the comments section below this post! :)

May peace be yours,