Slow down. Easier said than done, right? But it’s a worthwhile goal, because when we slow down, we create some space in our minds and our souls for happiness. This could be finding a new passion, embracing our inner silence, or even seeing something we’d normally take for granted in a brand-new light.
When you incorporate daily routines into your life, it benefits you in so many different ways. Consciously performing certain activities each day adds some much-needed stability, both on a physical and emotional level. It has the power to ground you and slow down the busy pace of your life.
They say that forming a new healthy habit takes around 21 days. With that in mind, we’ve created a list of 25 daily routines for you to try—because we want to help you step up your slow down game that little bit extra.
1. Skip the 5 minute shower and take a 30 minute bath. Bathing relaxes your muscles and helps your mind unwind.
2. Instead of gulping down that morning latte, truly take the time enjoy it turning it into a mindful moment. This slows you down and reminds you of the simple pleasures in life.
3. Implement phone-free times and zones. Try leaving your phone at home when you walk outside, or turn it off for at least an hour each night. This liberates you from being constantly “plugged in” and gives your mind some peace.
4. Plan some “do nothing” time in your schedule. When you do this, it gives your body and mind time to recharge.
5. Build a buffer. Take a look at your daily obligations and allow for 5 minutes extra time than it normally takes to complete them. This will give you some much needed breathing room.
6. Start a morning yoga practice. Yoga gets the blood flowing, wakes up the muscles and helps to psychologically prepare you for the day.
7. Stop quickly scanning things you read on the internet and embrace the art of slow reading.
8. Say no more often. This one is difficult, we know, but the rewards are undeniable. Stop agreeing to do things you don’t enjoy out of obligation.
9. Light a candle to help you meditate. Especially if you’re new to meditation, it is an easy and accessible way to practice it, and doing it every night helps you to focus and relax.
10. Learn to single-task instead of multi-task. You may think you’re getting more done when you’re doing 5 different things at once, but all you’re really doing is setting yourself up to make mistakes. This means that in the end, you’ll have to spend more time correcting them.
11. Eat slowly and be aware of how food affects all your senses.
12. Start a 1/2 hour of silence routine at home. You don’t need to book an entire week at a silent retreat to benefit from quiet. Simply instate a household-wide 30 minutes of silence rule each evening and feel its calming effects.
13. Build a sleep routine. We recommend starting by going to bed at the same time each night. Worldwide research has determined that sleep affects nearly everything about us: from our physical health to our decision-making ability to “cleaning up the brain,” as suggested in this series of studies conducted at the University of Rochester in the US.
14. Use your screen(s) in a visualisation practice. Before you start bingeing on Netflix or Instagram, take a few moments to look at your blank screen and use it as a canvas for visualisation. Project your own dreams, thoughts, etc. onto it and sit with them a while before overwhelming your senses with outside stimuli.
15. Create a soulful skincare regimen. This kind of daily self-care does wonders for your emotional and physical well-being.
16. Watch a sunrise or sunset. According to research from Stanford University, this kind of awe-inspiring nature awakens something within us that “expands time and enhances well-being.”
17. Take five minutes each evening to declutter your living space. When you tidy up your environment, you’re also tidying up your headspace before bed.
18. Experience the moment instead of recording it. We’re all guilty of whipping out our smartphones when our kids are performing in a school play or sneaking some footage of a Beyoncé concert. This genuinely takes away from the experience. Create a mental memory instead of a digital one.
19. Don’t just gobble down a protein bar as you’re running out the door in the morning, but take time to make yourself a healthy breakfast instead.
20. Explore a new hobby. Always wanted to try painting? Set aside a ½ hour each day and dive in. Interested in Indian cuisine? Take an online cooking class at your own speed.
21. Make music part of your daily routine. Put on your favourite playlist while you get ready in the morning, for example, to help boost your mood for the day. We even have a bunch of Spotify playlists to inspire you.
22. Connect with your inner child by colouring in an adult colouring book. This actually helps both sides of your brain to slow down, and it has vast emotional benefits as well.
23. Practice a gratitude meditation. Often when we are feeling hurried and overwhelmed, taking some time to focus on the things in our life that we’re thankful for can help us slow down and shift gears.
24. Start a daily writing routine. Setting your thoughts and intentions down on paper can provide valuable insights and put an end to racing mind syndrome.
25. Learn the art of self-massage. The beauty of this is that you can reap all the rewards of massage on a daily basis without it breaking your budget.