Turning ‘Routine’ into ‘Ritual’

Routine and ritual, mug of coffee, wrist watch and open diary on a desk

Turning ‘Routine’ into ‘Ritual’ – the ICC formula for having a better time!

Awake? Semi.
Washed? Maybe.
Eaten? Fasting (actually no time but fasting sounds cooler).
Admin? Lingering.
Leave on time? No idea but I’m in the car now so, maybe.
Arrive on time? Might do. 40 miles have passed and I haven’t even noticed. Who’s driving anyway?
Schedule? Packed. It’ll be like a video game, I’ll bounce from one to the next.
Breaks? Doubtful. Caffeine helps.
Nutrition? Ready-made and plastic-wrapped. Can get it down me in 3 minutes.
Present? Not massively. Lights on for sure but not always home.
Energy? Cake helps. Could do with a stunt double at times.
Choices? Bound to be poor. Shame kicks in later. Then bed…

If this is what a familiar ‘routine’ looks like then Team Cool are not playing! We set out to determine what is routine and how we can #getitdone while still engaging in the process and having some fun. This is what we found.

Routines

A routine is a series of regular tasks that define or organise our time, like getting up and going to work. Routines can feel mundane and boring because, mostly, they have to be done. They’re typically completed on autopilot and can actually be really efficient, but they’re not necessarily motivating or enjoyable.

However, we found that the brain quite likes boring. A routine can create and maintain structure, which offers security: it helps us feel ‘safe’. We asked ourselves “What if the task list disappeared and we were free to follow any path? What would we start to fill the path with?” It turns out that we crave a bit of routine!

Sadly though, we often view our routine as a series of ‘things’ that need to be done, delaying happiness until the tasks are complete. We might choose short-term rewards at the end of the day or week, to help make us feel better or to take the edge off. We asked, “Are the rewards helpful? Healthy? Positive? Do we care? Have they become habits, requiring little effort or thought?”

We researched what we can do to make each part of the routine more pleasurable. How we can learn to appreciate the process rather than delay the enjoyment. How to turn something tedious or mundane into something more meaningful.

So, how do we turn routine into ritual?

Rituals

A ritual is a carefully selected way of doing something. It has a sense of purpose and is of positive benefit, not simply the straightforward completion of the task.

All routines can be turned into rituals. The difference lies in our mindset and in the subjective experience of the activity – it’s about attitude and perspective:

  • Find the PURPOSE – why is this important or of value? What will this give me? How might it help someone else?
  • Add INTENTION – what will it lead to? How does it shape or clear the path ahead?
  • Check the ATTITUDE – am I doing this because I have to or because I want to? Am I engaged or have I checked out? Am I sliding through life or am I showing up?

Here at ICC we are shaking things up. Turn off autopilot and come join us! Welcome to The ICC Experience.

#getitdone #performance #mindset #TheICCExperience #routine #ritual

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