Routine for Dummies

If you Google “Successful Routines” you will get a gazillion sites explaining what the most successful people do in their daily routines. There are common activities amongst the guru’s especially for the morning. Lifting, running, meditation, journaling, self reflection, drinking wierd mushroom teas, cold showers, and yoga are just a few.

This is my take on routines and I’ll explain myself in a few. Your routines will change as your goals change, but there should always be a routine. Seems like common sense and pretty easy huh? Then explain this to me. Why is it so common for someone to quit smoking for a month, have a stressful day at work and then stop at the store to buy a pack of cigarettes? Knowing what harm it brings and making them feel like shit every puff of the way until the pack is gone and a couple days later they are buying another. They had created a positive routine that was painful at first but not as painful as what the future held for them. They got through the physical withdrawals with whatever routine they had in place, but they didn’t excersise what must come with a routine. Discipline.

Oh discipline you son of a bitch. No one talks about training discipline as well as your routine. When they fail they blame their routine, because that’s easy to do, and neglect to look at their discipline.

Now let me explain myself. When I first quit drinking I had no routine. Shit I couldn’t even eat breakfast, lunch and dinner at the right times if at all. I forgot what it was like to fall asleep without a nightcap. Then a close friend showed up at my house and said get your gym clothes on. When your desperate for help and want it bad enough you’ll try anything. Remember if the routine makes you feel better than your current state it’s easier to train your discipline. I strapped up and headed to the gym. 2hrs of my day at the gym. Everyday I noticed a positive change mentally. Add one to my daily routine.

I needed a job so I got two. During the day I was a substitute teacher at my old highschool. Talk about weird. I also worked evenings at a local pharmacy counting pills. Also weird. Add two more activities to my routine.

I decided to do split sessions at the gym once in the morning and then once when I got done with work. On Tuesdays and Thursdays I’d hit up a good old fashioned meeting. Two more activities added to my routine.

My goal was to stay sober and save enough money to move back to Albany. I unintentionally created a routine where I made myself so tired by the end of the day I had no choice but to sleep when my head hit the pillow. The positive change was happening so fast that my addiction changed from wanting negativity to thriving on positive outcomes. My discipline was to the point where I was afraid to miss any of these activities because I didn’t want to ever go back to the shadows. The pleasure of 5am workouts outweighed the pain of drinking.

My advice to anyone who is fresh in recovery is to book your day to the brim with activities that will catapult you toward your goal. Then multiply that by ten so when your head hits the pillow your out.

It’s 8:42pm 10 years later and I’m to that point. My head is on the pillow writing this ready to pass out. Discipline!

Later this week I’ll continue on routines, how mine have evolved and how I always end up back in the gym.

Thanks for reading and much love!!!

-Josh

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