How to Break from a Monotonous Routine

Photo by Vu Bui

On most Tuesday mornings you'll find me at my local Dunkin Donuts and then in the office by 6:30am.  I skip my morning routine completely in favor of an adjusted route that gets me to work before anyone else. 

As I've noted before (Mini Routines Enhance Productivity & A Backup Plan for Your Morning Routine), morning routines are very important to getting the day started on the right foot.  I try to start my day at 5am every week day, getting to work by 7am and beating the rush of traffic and last minute driving delays. 

But once a week, I blow up my routine.

On Tuesdays, I skip all of the usual components of my morning routine, from prayer time to the Senseo coffee ritual.  Instead, I jump right into the shower and then head off for work.  I treat myself to a cup of coffee on the way and get to work while it's still dark.

For me, this once-a-week break in my routine works wonders.  First, it keeps my momentum from Monday moving in the right direction.  Second, I get to enjoy a great cup of coffee.  Third, I can enjoy some quality silence before everyone else gets to work. Fourth, I can tackle some difficult projects that need attention, before the cram and busyness of the day settles in.  Why not switch up your morning routine one day per week?

The Spiritual Twist
Trappist monks have often had the tradition of an extended walk, just to 'clean out the cobwebs'.  Even elderly monks will take part in a 6-7 mile hike.  Like a sports car that should be driven fast and hard every once in a while, even the monk knows that his body can benefit from some extended periods of exercise.