Tips to Creating a New Routine for Fall  

I am usually ready for the hazy, humid days of summer to give way to the cooler evening breezes that herald the beginning of the fall season by the time August rolls around. I start thinking about plans for my fall garden and my autumn front porch décor; I enjoy walking through the stores and seeing pumpkin spice everything out on the shelves while nautical home accessories are replaced by pinecone and wood accents with shades of vermillion and marigold. I make plans to update my fall wardrobe and shoes (a gal always needs a new pair!) while at the salon, we prepare to switch out our bridal gown inventory. On the home front, August is when my grandchildren start the new school year and become acclimated to all of their exciting after-school activities. 

 

Usually, by the first day of fall, we all have an established routine that takes us through the holiday season. But that was before COVID-19, and this August is just full of so many unknowns and a lot of uncertainty. So many of us have been struggling with the inability to make long term plans. Since COVID-19 began, our lives have been spent focused on the day to day and the here and now. And there is a segment of the population who thrive on spontaneity and can easily acclimate and go with the flow. But for the vast majority of us, we need the structure of routine to help us navigate our day to day lives.

 

Lori Allen tends to her garden at home in Atlanta, GA

I do believe it’s important to create a routine, even during our global pandemic. If you’re at home with kids, a routine is essential to help them feel safe and secure. You can still create a routine during a global pandemic, you just need to manage your expectations so that you’re not disappointed if something unexpected comes up that changes your day-to-day activities.

Here are a couple of tips that will help you create a new routine this fall:

  • Commit to a length of time –  Start small and work your way up! It takes 30 days to create a habit, but if you’re not ready to commit to an entire month given so much uncertainty, start with one week. Slowly build up and ease into your new routine.
  • Write down your plans – It’s so much easier to stick to a routine when it’s staring you right in the face. Whether you prefer to keep a digital calendar like me, or you’re old school and like to write things down in a notebook, writing down your plans will help you stick to them.
  • Accountability is key – Get yourself an accountability partner to help you stay on track. Whether you’re trying out a new, daily exercise routine or you’re wanting to make self-care a part of your day, enlist the help of a friend or family member to make sure you follow through. Having another person check in each day will help keep you focused on your goals.
  • Be consistent – Consistency is the key to establishing a habit. No matter what I have going on during my day, I make sure to stick with my morning routine which includes devotional time and my daily workout. I am not someone who naturally loves to work out so I set aside 30 minutes first thing in the morning and get it done! I work out every day, first thing in the morning, no matter what. If you are finding it hard to stick to your workout routine, try to tackle it first thing in the morning.  Schedule your alarm for 30-45 minutes earlier than your usual wake up time, set your workout clothes out the night before, and get your workout in as soon as you wake up.
  • Manage expectations – Don’t be hard on yourself if something happens that makes you deviate from your routine. Build-in some kindness towards yourself for being imperfect! It might take you a couple of tries before you can establish your new routine, just be gentle with yourself if you miss something one day and be sure to pat yourself on the back whenever you’ve accomplished your goals!

Do you thrive on routine or prefer your days to be unstructured? Share with us your tips in the comments!

Until next time,

Lori Allen