This sounds supremely counterintuitive, because creative people, by their very nature resist anything that maintains the status quo – and let’s be honest, a routine, by definition, is part of the status quo.
But the fact of the matter is, the most successful creatives, do the same thing nearly every day – and that’s by design.
It’s like Steve Jobs wearing his signature jeans, black turtleneck, jeans and new balance sneakers.
If I’m at home, I get up every morning and do the exact same thing, every single day.
I get up. I listen to two short daily podcasts while I’m walking on the treadmill.
I fill up my kettle with water. I heat it and french press coffee.
I unload the dishwasher.
I shower and I take my kid to school, if it’s a school day.
I come home and clean up the kitchen, then head to my office, light a candle and work for a few hours.
I have to set an alarm so I remember to eat lunch.
And I work some more.
Every single day. The only thing that varies is if I have to take him to school that day or not.
That routine takes the guesswork out of my day. And it ensures that I don’t walk into the kitchen halfway through the day and get mad because it’s a mess, and I forgot to clean it up, which would drastically derail whatever I was working on (trust me).
I don’t have to work on the same thing every day, but the build up to my work time is always the same, and that soothes my tendency towards anxiety.
Your entire day doesn’t have to be mapped out for you. And you certainly don’t have to stick to the routine if you are on vacation, or other circumstances arise – but the comfort and familiarity of your routine can free up your mind to work on the stuff that matters.
Do you have a routine? What does it look like?
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