More on creating workday rituals:
Right now, I prefer to talk about creating rituals. Using the word self-care has become trite. Too often the need for self-care is impossible to live up to. This is because a person could feel poorly when they’re not engaging in self-care to the degree they think they’re “supposed to.”
Twyla Tharpe the American dancer wrote a book about the creative habit—about learning it and using it throughout your life.
The number-one takeaway I always remembered and practiced out of all the tactics she listed in the book was this one:
Engage in a warm-up habit before doing your task. In her book Tharp talked about the routine she engaged in before going to the gym to work out every day:
Take a shower. Get dressed in her gear. Hail the taxi to take her there. Get in car. Tip the driver before getting out. Walk into gym. Exercise.
In this regard having a workday ritual could help.
In the morning when you wake up you could engage in a habit as a warm-up to get you ready to go to your job.
This could be doing 5 sun salutations of yoga.
This could be scrambling eggs and cutting up an orange.
(I don’t recommend having boxed cereal for breakfast. Nor do I recommend having orange juice. I prefer to scramble eggs with veggies and have an orange.)
This could be taking a shower.
The creative habit you choose to use in the morning—and in winding down at night—is up to you to try out and decide if it works. My ideas above are suggestions. You might find other rituals to engage in that suit you better.
Sometimes it can be jotting 5 things down in a journal that you’re grateful for. Or lying in bed and resting and doing breathing exercises.
A British M.D. in his book How to Make Disease Disappear listed this breathing technique:
Breathe in for a count of 3. Hold your breath for a count of 4. Breathe out for a count of 5.
I use this breathing technique silently wherever I am to cope with stress.