by Gideon 

November 5, 2016

There’s one thing that can change your life starting today. We call them “rituals!”

I once heard world-renowned Results Coach and Bestselling Author, Tony Robbins, say that he can guess your rituals just by looking at you.

What he meant was, rituals lead to certain obvious results. In this case, if you have good or bad health rituals in place, it would be evident and apparent to everyone because your body will show it.

This opened my eyes as to how I saw the world and people around me.

I realised we are all basically the sum of our consistent thoughts, emotions and actions.

There is no denying and definitely no hiding the fact.

What I see when I observe you long enough, tells me heaps about what you do and not do, most of the time, when nobody’s looking!

This also tells me that there are things you can improve today to turn the tough results in your life around.

So in order to change your life, we need to start with your rituals. Another word would be “habits.”

The word “ritual” however sounds more meaningful than the word “habit.”

Rituals are often taken more seriously and have a connotation of sacredness, which by the way and FYI, I completely believe.

Your life is sacred, and there’s always more that you could be doing to get the most out of your life!

There are many actions you can take that mean little when only done occasionally, like brushing your teeth, but when done over time they yield a great result, like saving your teeth.

In this post, we will look at a Few Simple Rituals That Can Change Your Life.

If you’re ready, let’s begin …

How do you change the results you’re getting in your life and business right now?

Big question …

The answer is a lot simpler in my humble opinion.

Rituals!

If I can get you to stop and adopt a few core rituals, over time, your life will be significantly different.

How do I know?

Because I’ve done it.

A few years ago I was fat, sick, and not in a happy place.

But I turned my life around.

I’ve managed to lose more than 60Lbs (30kg) and became a New Zealand Masters sprint champion as well as world ranked.

world-rankings-2016-1

Needless to say, health and fitness became the cornerstones of my life again … Like they used to be.

This also made me become a far more effective and passionate high performance consultant to small businesses and their teams.

And during this process, I learned just how easy it is to fall off the wagon or stay on the straight and narrow.

All it takes is a couple of unhelpful or helpful rituals.

Unhelpful rituals will undermine the results you desire in life or business and bring you nothing but heartache.

Helpful rituals practised consistently and over time will reap your rewards.

So yes, I’ve walked the talk.

I’ve also learned just how easy it is to get caught in a downward spiral.

The good news, however, is that breaking free from that vicious cycle doesn’t need to be complicated.

It’s not always easy, but it’s definitely not complicated.

All you need is to commit to a couple of helpful rituals to change your life, personally and professionally.

So, let me share with you a few specific rituals that you can use to change your life.

You obviously don’t have to do more but choose one or two that will make the biggest impact in your life, and get started.

Adding these few rituals to your set of daily routines can provide significant rewards:

Review your goals each day.

It’s not enough to write down your goals.

It’s necessary to review them at least once each day … Twice is better.

You can keep your goals next to your bed and review them when you first wake up or at bedtime.

Doing this will ensure that you never forget about your goals again by reviewing them daily.

Why is this important?

For the simple reason that energy flows where focus goes.

The more you focus on something, the more your Reticular Activating System (RAS) will kick into overdrive to bring things into your field of awareness relating to your goals.

So make it your new ritual to review your goals at the start and close of each day.

Exercise for 30 minutes.

Tony Robbins says that one of his biggest secrets to creating the optimal high-performance state each day is “manipulating” his physiology.

What does that mean?

It means you can create any state that you want (like confidence, energy, positivity, gratitude etc.) by using your body a certain way.

One of the most powerful ways you can use your body to your benefit is by doing physically intense actions.

It doesn’t mean you need to play sports because not everyone likes sports.

But it does mean you need to find a way to use your body in an intense way each day in order to get the maximum benefit.

A brisk walk can be enough. Swimming is great. Sprinting is awesome.

Fast jumping jacks or burpees are excellent.

Whatever you choose to do, just realise that no matter how you slice it, regular exercise enhances your physical and emotional health.

You will look and feel better, which means you will also have more energy to do things you need to do to achieve the results you desire.

Too many people are spending far too much time thinking about things.

Get up and get moving.

So, here’s your challenge, find a type of exercise that you enjoy and go for it.

Read something informative.

One of the greatest gifts my parents gave me, is a love for reading.

Honestly, I cannot think of a more worthwhile activity.

It absolutely blows my mind when people say they hate reading.

Here’s why …

Everything you’ll ever need to know is written in a book somewhere!

Seriously.

In addition to that, with the Internet as our greatest resource, access to amazing books has never been easier.

You can literally learn anything you want to know in a book somewhere.

All you need to do is find and read it.

So here’s my challenge …

Drop 30 minutes of TV and add 30 minutes of reading.

Adopting this new ritual alone will change your life forever.

The amount of knowledge you can gain over the course of a lifetime is staggering.

Meditate.

I’m by no means an expert in the field of meditation, but I do appreciate the incredible value it brings.

Meditation is a wonderful way to relieve stress and learn how to focus.

But it’s so much more than that.

Meditation Masters teach us that meditation is the pathway to your most inner being and connecting with God (or as some refer to at, Higher Self, True Self, Creator, Creative Force, Universe etc.)

Adding meditation as a ritual to your daily routine will encourage you to slow down and “take control” of your mind.

So many of us are simply running around in reaction mode every day.

We simply react to what comes into our environment.

Consequently, we struggle to keep a focus, stay the course, feel good, and achieve our goals.

Meditation can change that.

The reality is, you’ll be a more capable version of yourself if you add a short meditation session to your daily routine.

Create a to-do list.

Here is a simple ritual I have every evening before bed.

I make a list of the most important tasks I want to complete the following day.

I also make sure that they are in line with what I value and what I want to achieve.

I’ve learned a long time ago that busyness is not the same as effectiveness.

Running around completing tasks without them serving a really important purpose, is just silly.

Immediately some of you might ask, “Well, what if my job entails completing mindless tasks?”

In that instance I might say, if you’re in a job or position that requires running around completing “mindless” tasks, then it’s up to you to find a higher purpose in completing those tasks.

You simply need to align what you do with what you value in order to stay motivated until you reach the stage where you either move up or move on.

Here’s my challenge to you …

Before retiring each evening, make a list of the most important tasks you want to complete the following day.

Then prioritise the tasks.

What will happen is you’ll start spending your time on the most important tasks and know what needs to be done the moment you wake up.

Review your day.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed but, you do some things right and other things wrong each day.

We all do.

It’s called, being human.

But, this is also a good thing, because as people we learn more from our mistakes and failures and from our successes.

In fact, some schools of thought believe there is no such thing as success or failure; only results.

I tend to agree with this.

In the real estate world, there is a saying that you’re only as good as your last deal. Then you have to start all over again.

I think this is true of life also.

If today was filled with mistakes, by tomorrow, all those mistakes will be a memory.

The same if today was filled with successes. Tomorrow, they will also be memories (just like mistakes).

The question is, whether I’ve learned from yesterday (today) or not?

Did I pay attention to the results I got today so that I can be better tomorrow?

This simple ritual requires you to make note of your successes and failures by reviewing your day, at the end of each day, so that you can plan to improve tomorrow.

Once you’ve reviewed your day, you can then make the necessary adjustments to ensure that you have more successes and fewer failures going forward.

Eat a healthy breakfast.

Your first meal of the day is the most important for a different reason than you might think …

I believe, it sets the stage for the rest of the day.

Oftentimes an unhealthy breakfast leads to an unhealthy lunch which leads to an unhealthy dinner, since the healthiness of the day seems ruined after a breakfast consisting of doughnuts.

I found that once I start my day with my normal bowl of oats and protein shake, after my morning workout, the rest of the day flows better.

I make better choices in all departments.

Conversely, on the mornings where I overslept and had to rush making my breakfast, without working out that morning, my day turn to custard.

Now, maybe that’s all in my head, but that’s how I’ve experienced it.

So, here’s my challenge …

Make breakfast a good one, and by that I mean, a healthy one. And make sure to make it a ritual, every morning.

You can thank me later.

Write in a journal.

Write your thoughts down at the end of the day.

You can simply add a couple of thoughts as you review your day (as mentioned earlier).

By doing this you’ll begin to see patterns in your thought processes and behaviour that have escaped your prior awareness.

This can provide some really valuable insights which you can use to propel yourself forward and create better results in your life.

Interestingly enough, I don’t understand this, but you’ll also start living a more interesting life, if only so that you have something more interesting to record that evening.

I have a friend who was quite diligent in his journaling, and this is exactly what happened to him.

On the days where he didn’t have much to write down, he silently vowed to himself to do much better the next day so that he’s got something to write about.

Was actually quite funny.

Rise early.

As I said earlier, a non-rushed start to the day is more relaxing than running around in a hurry each morning.

You can enjoy the earliest part of your day and get a head start on the rest of the world.

Here’s what I’ve done in the last couple of weeks.

Since I’ve already been getting up at 6 a.m. to get ready for the gym, I decided to get up even earlier.

It started with me having to take my mum to the airport just after 3 a.m. in the morning and then driving back to my home town (two hours away).

As I was driving back in the dark and eventually arriving at our house, still in time to get to the gym (which I didn’t just FYI), I realised how much I enjoyed the world before it woke up.

Needless to say, I was in bed pretty early that same night but I decided to set my alarm clock for 10 minutes earlier than my usual wake-up time.

I did this for two or three nights, and then I added another 10 minutes.

So now all I am waking up 20 minutes earlier than I used to, and I’m loving it.

My goal is to go even earlier, but I need this to become a ritual first.

You have to realise as you get up earlier, you also need to go to bed earlier.

This might have some implications for you and your situation.

Regardless, my challenge to you is to review your waking uptime.

Is it possible to start waking up earlier and using that time for some other constructive ritual, like meditation or exercise?

I think it is, but it’s up to you.

What will you do?

My challenge is for you to follow a similar strategy to mine.

Set your alarm clock 10 minutes earlier tomorrow morning and see how you go.

Use that 10 minutes to meditate or read or simply enjoy your breakfast.

Then, once you’re okay with 10 minutes earlier, go for 20 minutes.

And so on.

So,  before we part ways today, think about yourself for a moment …

What other rituals could you add?

Think about your hobbies.

You might want to play the violin or draw each day.

Maybe the idea of setting aside time to pray appeals to you.

Regardless of the set of rituals that is attractive to you, only add one ritual per week.

Add rituals to your life slowly because they’ll have a better chance of sticking that way.

My greatest and last challenge to you is to give your life the priority it deserves by dedicating time each day to the rituals that matter the most.

Start taking control of your time so it doesn’t control you.

Start taking control of your life, because sitting around won’t make that happen.

No one will.

Nothing will.

You have to!

Take a moment today, and decide which ritual will make the biggest difference in your life or business right now.

Then commit yourself to implement it for at least 30 days.

Start small, but keep going … even when you don’t feel like it.

And remember, I’m here if you need any help.

About the author 

Gideon

Gideon is the founder of TheRelationshipGuy.com, a top-50 relationship blog (2021) and top-100 marriage blog (2021) focused on providing healthy relationship advice about love and life. He earned a Master's degree in theological studies before training as a professional counsellor and hypnotherapist (DipProfCouns., DipMSHT.) almost 10 years ago. He is currently pursuing further graduate Psychology studies at Massey University while working as a relationship and dating blogger the majority of the time. He has been married to his wife for over fifteen years and is the father of two children.

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