How to Set Up a Quality Workable Routine

Be dull in your everyday routine so you can be wildly creative where it counts.

Routines are to;

  • simplify
  • clarify
  • create order, symmetry, and familiarity in chaos and high stress.

Routines are the foundation of success.

Top performers in every area of every industry have lives full of routine.

  • Most of us have routines in the morning.
  • Think about your morning routine and how, if you skip it you have a tougher time launching your day.
  • As you decide what kinds of routines will help you, you will need to simplify some things in your life.
  • This is one of those things that is easier said than done, we know, but is well worth the effort.
  • Consider your entire lifestyle.
  • If you have an expensive lifestyle that consumes huge amounts of effort just to maintain, perhaps that time could be better spent doing more enjoyable things than maintaining homes, boats, cars, etc.
  • Similarly, too cheap a lifestyle has a similar result.
  • If you spend hours negotiating the cheapest and the lowest rates, airfares, gas prices, etc. or have to shop for necessities at six locations to get the best price on everything, ask yourself if that is time truly well-spent.
  • Routines include setting time with family, for eating, sleeping, and exercising.
  • It means setting a clear time for all routine activities.
  • The way to get routines to work for you is to make sure you are setting them at times that work best for you and your biological clock.
  • Your morning routines should be so good that when you walk out of your house, you feel ready to tackle any problems the world throws at you.

It is important to know that;

  • No activity is more important to ritualize than sleep. This lets your body know that it is time to slow down and prepare to shut down.
  • By fixing mealtimes and planning you’ll become vastly more efficient. You’ll save money on groceries too!
  • Since exercise has such a powerful effect on brain energy and alertness, place your workout at times of day when you most need it.

Taking the Right Step

Sometimes we need to approach things with a bit of attitude to get things done and do them well.

You can be a bit playful with this and;


  • Do you spend a lot of time looking for things?
  • Productivity research tells us that the average person spends about 10% of the day looking for things.
  • If that were so, you could gain 5 weeks a year just by getting your retrieval methods under control!
  • If you tend to keep good track of things at work, consider things at home.
  • Do you have a place for your keys, glasses, or lunch bags?
  • Do you ever find yourself searching for things in the morning right before you leave for work?
  • How long does it take you to find a particular file on your computer?
  • This is often one of the worst time-suckers out there today
  • Sometimes you just need to handle the little things that reduce concentration and cause anxiety, like the clutter on your desk and the incomplete jobs.
  • This is the opposite of prioritizing.
  • Do the quick and dirty tasks NOW, even if you just do them for 5 minutes a day for the next two weeks.
  • The crises in our lives are often the result of not handling the little things or not reacting to a niggling feeling that something is wrong.
  • Ignore the little toothache and you wind up with a root canal.
  • If we could accept the fact that each day is not going to be perfectly balanced, we’d probably be a lot more content with our work.
  • Some days there will be nothing but fires to put out, but this can be balanced with quieter days and the phone isn’t jangling off the hook.
  • Balance can also come from setting your work aside and going for a brisk walk at lunch, or phoning someone that you care about.
  • Achieving balance is not necessarily about spending equal time on the things you like versus what you don’t like: it can be about the value of things.
  • A big smile and a quick lunch with someone can balance out a morning spent in a frustrating meeting.

Organize Your Time

  • If you are receiving tasks and assignments by e-mail, or your boss delegates assignments to you, make sure you organize these incoming items immediately.
  • If something will take more than 30 minutes to complete, schedule it in your calendar and prioritize the items there.
  • If the task will take less than 30 minutes, try to get it done right away so that you are not procrastinating over it, or don’t forget that it needs doing.

Let Things Go

  • There is a rule we often follow at home that says if you have not used an item of clothing or kitchen gadget for a year, get rid of it.
  • We need to apply the same thing to work: when you no longer need things, get rid of them.
  • We rarely get rid of things we need, but if we do, it’s not likely to be the end of the world.
  • You can replace it if you need to.
  • If you are someone who has a hard time throwing things out, put them into storage first, and then set up an archiving date within 12 months so that they move from storage to the shredder or rubbish bin.
  • If you are going through a stack of paper or items, start with three piles, and act on them quickly.
  • Sort them into piles to shred, store, or dump in the garbage.

Learn to Delegate

  • Don’t waste your time doing things that somebody else can do, especially if they can do them better than you.
  • Save your time for those things which you are uniquely qualified to do.
  • In addition to easing up your workload, delegation helps your staff to learn new things and to take risks where they have you there for backup if needed.
  • Delegating does not mean that you “give away” work completely.
  • As the owner of a task, you must remember that you are ultimately responsible for the results that are achieved.
  • If you are not in a leadership position, you may be thinking that you don’t have anyone that you can delegate to, but that’s often not the case.
  • In many work teams, we can delegate laterally to a colleague who has particular expertise, who is looking for some skill development, or who simply has some extra time.

Five levels of delegation proposed by:

  • Tell: “Based on my decision, here’s what I want you to do.”
  • Sell: “Based on my decision, here’s what I want you to do, because…”
  • Consult: “Before I make a decision, I want your input.”
  • Participate: “We need to make a decision together.”
  • Delegate: “You make a decision.”

You must find ways to delegate, no matter what your position is.

Learn to clearly define who is to do what and let them show you that they can do it.

Make sure your communication is clear so that they know what your expectations are and any limitations of the assignment (i.e. budget, time frames, or other resources).

The five steps to the delegation process:

  • Explain why the job is important.
  • Describe what is needed in terms of results (not how, but what).
  • Give the person the authority they need to do the job.
  • Indicate when the job needs to be completed and get agreement.
  • Ask for feedback to ensure a common understanding.


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