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5 convincing reasons rituals can put you on a winning track.

Rituals are one of the most important tools you can use to achieve balance, mental toughness and your goals. Repetition of habits creates an awareness of your values and what’s most meaningful. Disciplined patterns of thinking and acting can enhance your ability to respond to pressure, recover from mental and physical depletion and concentrate on your goals.

In Jame E. Loehr’s New York Times bestselling book, Stress for Success, Jim works with and interviews top Olympian athletes, business leaders and people with extreme pressure cooking careers. He noted they all follow daily routines or rituals, enabling their health, happiness and performance to go to a new, higher level.

Studies show that rituals:

  1. Help us shift gears to oscillate between stress and recovery.
  2. Increase personal control and facilitate living a life consistent with our deepest values.
  3. Bring order and structure to chaos and change.
  4. Stimulate past emotional states by activating sensory memory.
  5. Help us execute complex tasks with perfection—mentally, physically and emotionally.

I’ve always had rituals. You probably have some too. But I’ve recently created a list of them and consciously go through them daily. I’ve found in doing this my productivity has significantly risen and I’m feeling a lot less stressed and much more fulfilled.

Below is my daily list. I’ve thrown it in a chart and actually mark off the rituals as I do them everyday. And when I think about blowing a ritual  off, I ask myself, what would Michael Phelps, Madonna or whoever I admire do? The answer is they would do the ritual, and that’s why they have been so successful. When I have a big event to do,  give a presentation, speech or tennis match, I add other items that are specific to those situation. For instance, when I speak, I practice a number of times before the gig, and imagine a room with a standing ovation. For tennis, I perform mental and physical exercises before I walk on the court and talk to myself and tennis ball.

What are your rituals? Have you had any experiences that you can share?

21 Daily Rituals Monday Tues. Wed. Thurs. Friday Saturday Sunday
6:00 wake up
Read daily affirmations
Drink water/ ¼ juice or eat a handful of grapes to rev up sugar
Stretch/ 10 minutes of exercise if playing tennis that day, if not 45 minutes
5 minutes – meditate, clear mind/breathe
Make and eat breakfast, read WJS, watch Today Show, take vitamins
AM email check, AM Tweets
Shower, dress
7:30- Start work
10:30 mid-morning snack
12:30 lunch
Mid day stretch/breathe
4:00 afternoon snack
15 minute cat nap
4:15 Plan next day, at end of day
5:30 Harvest time tracking input
6:30-8 Monday/Wed., Evenings,     AM on Sat./Sunday. Always stretch, get in zone, play focused tennis min. of 1.5 hr
8:15 Dinner, journal food and fitness
Evening reading
Go to sleep by 11, dismiss any negative thoughts
Dream big

Also view: 4-simple habits of champion goal-getters.

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4 Responses to “Why creatures of habit are champions in sports, business and life”

  1. Thanks for sharing your daily rituals…I’m a huge believer in the same thing! And I thought I was slightly crazy to have written down that stuff, but really if it’s not written down, it’s not getting done :)

    I wanted to share a cool simple iPad app I found that facilitates this very activity…it’s called GoalTracker (I have no relationship with the folks who make it, I just found it and love it). You get to put your daily rituals in it and then earn “stickers” toward a reward that you specify. I use the bigger apps (like PocketInformant) for the larger scheduling & planning, but for this type of simple list, GoalTracker is worth checking out.

    Thanks for starting my day on a happy note! I love this blog :)

  2. Lauren Angrick says:

    When I have to learn something new, the best way that I remember is by repeating it to myself while I am falling asleep at night. When I wake up in the morning I know that I will remember because it is the first thing I think of when I wake up.

  3. [...] to any team members who is supporting me. Plus, when I do this highly-focused juggle I also do my rituals, read my affirmation as I eat right, don’t drink too much and visit my master goal list [...]

  4. [...] Regimes and rituals do help me stay on course. But there are others days, I’m a reckless, wild free bird and fly all over the place and still produce. [...]

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