Building rituals in your life

Why building rituals in your life is great for you.

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One of the practices that separates the successful people in life to everyone else is that they have incorporated rituals in their life to meet their goals and grow themselves and their businesses.  One of the people who has incorporated a ritual of writing every day is Leo Babauta from Zen Habits.   He practiced the habit of writing every single day for his blog and writing for other blogs until his site grew to having over 100,000 subscribers and being mentioned in various high profile sites.   He is now up there with the like of Steve Pavlina and the Huffington Post.   The amazing thing is that Leo is married with 6 children and has a very active family life.   When it comes to writing I have a love-hate relationship with it, I love it when I am actually in the zone and everything flows, but when it 'has to be done' my muse seems to desert me.   However having said this the more I do it the more my muse seems to be with me.

building_ritualsTony Schwartz talks about incorporating rituals in your life one a time and he advises for 30 days do something everyday at the same time to make it a ritual.   If you do it for 30 days and then stop for 1 day, your mind and body actually miss the ritual and you feel as if you are missing something in your life.

What kind of rituals to build?

There are a million rituals you can incorporate into your life and I will list a few here to get you thinking:

  • Writing every single day
  • Practicing relaxation every day
  • Write down your goals every day
  • Exercise every day
  • Leave 10 comments every day on various blogs to increase your blogs presence
  • Do 1 thing that will get you a step closer toward your goals in life
  • Clean the house at a set time each day (this way sunday mornings are not such a chore, if you're anything like me the big jobs are left until sunday).
  • Write a page of your book every single day
  • Work on producing 1 product every month, if you're an information marketer, and work every day on completing just 1 product.

Obviously your rituals will be totally different from mine but hopefully you get the picture.   Tony Schwartz further goes on his book to say that it is best to build up 1 ritual at a time.   So in effect you can develop 12 rituals every year.

How to build your rituals

The first step is to know what ritual you would like to develop.   For me it is writing every single day to my blog, for my other websites and contributing to other blogs and I will be doing this for the next 30 days.   So get a list of 12 rituals you want to develop.

The second step is to prioritise these rituals until you have a list of 12 rituals and at the top of the list is the ritual you most want to develop and practice.

Now start with the ritual at the top of the tree and start doing it every day for the next 30 days.   The key is to try and make it the same time every day and not to waver from that set time, obviously there will be some days this is not possible but try and make it as close to the time you set as possible.

When you have completed your first 30 days review you list re-prioritise and then start the next one, whilst still practicing your original one.

That's it, you keep building and you keep doing your rituals.

Objections to this

There are going to be objections to this so let me dispel some things first.   When I first started doing this my mind said 'well if I have 12 rituals that I do every day, I won't have time to do anything else in my life!' however whenever I started doing this I found that I was much more focused on my rituals and I got a lot more done.   The rituals, so far, in my life are:

5am – 5.15am do 10 minute back exercises

5.15am – 5.45am – checking emails and social networking and answering questions (don't click on links to websites even if you think they are interesting.   Instead create an 'interesting' folder in your email program and view it at a later date, chances are it won't seem that interesting at a later date and it get's deleted.)

5.45am – 6am – 15 minutes of relaxation

6am – 6.45am – 45 minutes of writing either for the blog, another blog or for my next web project

6.45am – 7am – Get kids up and ready for school

7am – 7.15am – Make lunches up for school and get the kids up again (last chance!)

12pm – 12.30pm – Lunch at the computer checking emails and social marketing.

12.30pm – 12.45pm – Back exercises

12.45pm – 1pm – relaxation

10pm – 10.15pm – Back exercises

So you can see from the list above I have developed a few rituals in my life that are good for me, productive and helps me to reach other goals in life.   Before I started really doing this I was unfocused and my mind was all over the place as I had so many ideas and I was going from one idea to another and never really completing anything. Now I am much more focused and adding to my rituals every month.   The newest ritual being writing every day, however having said this I have had no internet connection for 10 days as BT screwed up and cut my line off when i was trying to transfer an old number to my new house, so you will not have seen any new posts for the last 10 days or so.   However now you will be seeing one every day for the next 30 days or so.

What rituals do you want in your life

Do you have rituals in your life which you are achieving.   Why not let us know and tell your story of how your rituals are working out.

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About the author

Steven Aitchison

Steven Aitchison is the author of The Belief Principle and an online trainer teaching personal development and online business.  He is also the creator of this blog which has been running since August 2006.