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« The Next Hour of Your Life | Main | The Importance of Correct Form »

How to Set Up Routines

Alan Baljeu asks in the comments to Wednesday’s post:

Before a new routine becomes habit, how do you manage it? Do you write out a separate list that you consult? Do you write these steps into no-list FVP in reverse order them so [you can do] them 1 by 1?

Basically there are three ways of setting up a routine:

  1. Examine what you are doing at the moment, write the steps down and then work out how to improve them. This is how I worked out the Blogging routine in The Same Old Routine. It is particularly important to do this when you find that your existing routine is not producing the intended result.
  2. Get into a routine by using a consistent time management system. As you work day by day so you will tend to follow the same path. If you examine what you have done each day, you can take steps to consciously improve the sequence. Although any time management system will work as far as this is concerned, No-List systems are particularly good at it because you have to recreate the sequence out of your own mind each time.
  3. Design a new routine from scratch. If you are about to start a new activity it is worthwhile to design a sequence of action.

Remember that by the very nature of routines, they are activities which are going to be repeated over and over again. The more often you repeat one the more it is going to get carved in stone in your head. Therefore it’s important to examine your routines regularly to ensure that they are in fact producing the desired result efficiently and effectively.

Reader Comments (1)

One day I decided to create a routine. I used a no-list system and copoed what I did that day into a routine. Then I used that list to feed no-list the following day (90%+ of the tasks would come from the routine). In other words, I would mainly just do whatever was on the routine. When I found new things I needed to do that weren't on the routine they would be worked within the no-list system and then added to the routine for the next day.

I was following two main hypotheses:

1. There were a lot of things that didn't get sufficient attention. Since I needed to do them, that meant I should at least consider them every day going forward. I could still check them off if they didn't need any attention today.

2. Things were only added to the routine if they were actually worked on in the no-list system. In other words they were not created from some ideal on paper in advance. They were things that were actually done/started. It's little bit like when you're growing a list in the Spinning Plates method.
July 1, 2016 at 14:30 | Unregistered CommenterDon R

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