How to Ritualize the Things You Value Most
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This month we’re focusing on prioritizing rituals over routine, and embracing the element of ceremony as it pertains to our day-to-day life. Which, when your days are filled with pumping sessions, preschool drop-off, and trying to squeeze in a semblance of regular meals, can sound almost fanciful.
A meaningful life is a textured life. And the best way to add texture to an otherwise flat day-to-day is to ritualize the things that matter most to you. Instead of feeling pressured to completely revamp your daily routine, try starting with one or two adjustments. Incorporating rituals requires organization and commitment, so it’s best to build confidence in change by keeping promises to yourself. That’s easier when you’ve chosen just a few realistic goals.
While it’s up to you to decide where to start and what values you truly want to hone in on, we do have a few ideas to help get you started.
Slow it all down.
We often rush through our routines because we’re busy, but fueling our activities with this type of haphazard behavior means we’re not really engaged with what we’re doing. Instead, we’re trying to get to the end so we can rush on to the next activity. A beautiful ritual that occurs in many households is putting the kids to bed. Try to take this moment in, and even draw it out. You’re probably thinking, “It already takes three books, one glass of water, fourteen songs, etc., etc.” But here's a hack: Instead of trying to cram the whole bedtime song-and-dance into the ten minutes before you'd ideally like them asleep, start the process earlier. When you allot thirty minutes to accomplish the task, there's more time to relish in the sweet moments and you may find everyone feels more calm and content by the end.
Create a personal routine that nourishes you.
Before you hastily turn on the water and lather up the soap, pause for a deep breath. Then think about how you feel while you’re doing this, and bring it with you when you wash your face before turning in. Let your fingers slowly soak in the soap and absorb the cleansing that’s taking place. Whatever the products you use, put them on with the delicate touch and attention you receive at the spa. A nighttime routine is ripe for ritual as it’s a nice way to remember all the good in your day.
Embrace the small moments
We believe in small things with great love, and the same is true for any seemingly ordinary routine you wish to ritualize. Bring your little ones into these sweet rituals by finding a bit of delight in the day-to-day. This can look like singing the same song to baby during diaper changes and kissing their nose after you get them dressed or sharing favorites + unfavorites on the walk home from preschool each day.
There’s no need to make your rituals fancy or complicated. The more simple and repeatable they are, the better. If you take nothing else from this blog post let it be this: What matters most is that your rituals are meaningful to you.
Whatever rituals you choose, they should empower you. Choose parts of your routine that are meaningful to you and find the beauty in them.