The evening routine challenge is just about over. Here’s Day 5 of the Asian Efficiency evening routine challenge. It addresses a key issue that your routine needs to help you stick to it: Your why.
One of the reasons a lot of habits don’t stick is because you don’t have a clear reason for why you want to cultivate the habit, so there isn’t a real incentive to do it.
In the post Zachary asks:
Why is it so important that this evening ritual is strong? How does making the small, smart consistent choice to get the rest you need give you more of what you want out of life? More health. More abundance. More opportunity. More gratitude. More growth. More learning. More fun. More service. More romance.More of you.
I realised that part of the reason I wasn’t very good at sticking to my evening routine and bedtime was that, along with it not being very structured, I wasn’t being very clear on why I needed to do it.
“I should go to bed earlier because I’ll be tired in the morning, oh but I can’t be bothered, screw it, I’ll have another glass of wine…. Oh shit it’s midnight and I’ve just sat on the couch all evening and done nothing.”
This has gradually turned into an 11-step routine that starts at 9.20 and gets me into bed before 10.00pm.
Because I need to get enough sleep to function the next day, and I need to wake up early to get three of my most important things done before my day starts: meditate, move, create. I now look forward to getting up early to do these things, and most nights I look forward to going to bed several hours earlier than I used to.
On Tuesday night, I didn’t do the routine (mainly because I was filling in my paper Census form and watching the drama of #censusfail unfold on Twitter) and I felt very out of sorts as a result. I struggled getting to sleep that night, and I put this mostly down to the fact that I didn’t stick to my routine and specifically that I was on my devices right up to the time I went to bed. Either that or it’s a mighty big coincidence that it was the first time in ages I’ve had trouble sleeping.
So there’s my why; the final part of my evening routine, which ties it all together. In the Asian Efficency post, Zach suggests that once you’ve done this to:
“Set a calendar reminder to review what you wrote in a couple of weeks. Re-read and revise your “why” whenever you feel your motivation or execution slipping.
I think that’s a good idea.