Sharing my daily routine that’s helping me build more mental resilience.
By now everyone I know, knows I’ve gone through major anxiety episodes, delved into why, sought help, and made some choices to bounce back, and also commented on the recent growing amount of well-deserved attention mental health needs. Globally by WHO, and locally in New Zealand with a well-being budget focus on mental health (woo! Go Jacinda!).
In this post, I want to share some daily habits I’ve picked up along the way to help me. The reason I am sharing it publicly, is to hopefully give you some insight into the type of things you could do everyday to slowly remove stress, burnout, exhaustion, chronic illness, anxiety & depression etc.. from your life, and begin to be more alive — everyday.
I am in no way an expert in any of these matters and I lead a single life, but I have been exposed to people, literature, technology, organisations and content that have helped me build my own custom daily habits. My daily habits will also evolve over time, and I bet there will be days that I’m like ‘Ugh, no I am not feeling it’ and that’s ok too! We all have those days. As long as I continue to chose to develop them over time, I think we (me, myself and I!) will be just fine.
For the last one month, my daily routine and habits below:
It all starts with a good sleep the night before (7–8 hours at least!).
5.30AM Wake up (DO NOT touch my phone!)
5.35AM Do a 5 minute morning stretch / yoga routine
5.40AM Get a coffee, brush teeth, wash face etc
6.00AM Sit down in my dedicated meditation spot & do my 5 minute morning meditation & smile at the end of it (sometimes I force the smile!)
6.10AM Write in my gratitude diary for yesterday (I’ve recently found it works better for me to do it the next morning, rather than at night before bedtime)
6.15AM Check my schedule for the day — I use both GCal and a physical diary (where I note things like how my body and mind are feeling, things I want to note for the day)
6.30AM Check my email, social, write if I feel like it, read, go to gym
8AM onwards — Shower, enjoy the water — hot and then cold! There’s a reason for that!
- Get into my day, go through my Wunderlist checklist across work & personal admin.
- I am about to start a few work projects soon, so the morning routine will be changing, but I won’t be sacrificing the meditation bit!
- Afternoons, aren’t the most productive for me — so I nap 😴 Post nap, I actually get another burst of energy & creativity.
Night Time Routine
This part is still a work in progress for me. Timing varies, so below is roughly the plan:
6.30PM I may go to a BRTHE class, for journaling especially.
8PM Onwards Since we are in winter, I usually try wrap up the day & screen time early by 8PM. OR put into flight mode, or if I really can’t help myself, put my iPhone lighting into night shift so I can do some reading off it.
At least an hour before bed, I TRY to not touch the phone.Showering / taking a bath at night helps me distract myself from this 😜
9.30PM Do a night time meditation, body scan or sometimes a sleep story or sound therapy (I use the CALM app) to stop all the voices & thoughts in my head and finally sleep.
My bedroom and sleep set up
My bedroom is now no longer a space to work, it’s a sanctuary. I only have calming things in there.
Just to give you an idea, my set up for sleep includes — spray my pillows with bedtime REN, Lavender pulse point, silk eye mask by Superette, aroma diffuser / humidifier with lavender oil, perhaps a good book to read before meditation for sleep.
There are a few other tips that I’ve covered here previously.
This may be not for everyone, so you do you!
The above is going to evolve for me.
It will also be totally different for you especially if you are a parent, or live under different circumstances. Tailor it to work for you. While it may not be easy (getting into the habit of meditating even ONCE a day requires a lot of practice), it is totally doable!
Perhaps this long weekend in New Zealand, is a good time to start building a few habits that can help you with building a healthier mind and life.
Have a great & restful long weekend!
P.s. Always seek professional help if you feel super low or have panic attacks. I’ve worked with Counties Manukau mental health teams over the last month, and without them I would not have been able to overcome my anxiety setbacks, and do the above! Grateful for them and hope they will get more funding now to do more :)