10 Reasons To Make Rhythm A Habit
The power of habit helps illuminate the importance of establishing a daily rhythm in our lives. A Daily rhythm is one long daily habit; once established it can keep you on track and help you live a more balanced and productive life.
Why not make the choice to make rhythm a habit and create your day exactly the way you want it to be?
The habit of a daily rhythm will provide a framework for your day, support your whole family’s ability to stay on task and offer the freedom to live the life that dreams are made of.
Reasons to Make Rhythm a Habit
10 Reasons to Make Rhythm a Habit
1. Increased productivity
When your daily rhythm contains the space for you to get things done, accomplishing goals becomes a way of life. When everyday tasks become habits they no longer require much energy to complete. This both assists you in getting things done and opens the space to begin other projects you never thought you’d have the time for.
Positive habits, such as established household rhythms, work to save energy and brain power for the times you need it. When you establish and follow a daily rhythm it will support your focus and free up your mind to concentrating on higher level activities when you need to.
In other words, getting through your day-to-day tasks will no longer draw much energy from your reserves, so you can use those reserves to create new positive habits, work on projects, or have more freedom to do the things that matter most to you and your family.
2. Increased free time to do what you love
Counter to what you might think, creating a rhythm for your day will give you more time to do the things you’ve always wanted to do. Once you begin following a daily rhythm, an amazing amount of free time will become available to you.
The habit of rhythm will free up the energy that you used to spend in overwhelm trying to figure out when and how to do what, and why, each day. This will leave you with more free time than you ever thought possible. Establishing rhythm thus creates the freedom to do the things that matter both as an individual and a family.
3. Adds a flexible structure to the day
No matter what your feelings may be about schedules, having a structure in place to help you get through your day is a necessity when it comes to staying on task and getting things done. In my experience, a rhythm is a natural and organic flow to the day while schedules can be rigid and inflexible. When we follow a rhythm this always follows that, but this and that doesn’t necessarily happen at the exact time each day.
When I don’t have any structure in my life I feel lost, out of control, and completely overwhelmed from the second I wake up in the morning. Establishing a daily rhythm has allowed me to establish a string of positive habits that lead me through my day. Where there was once chaos in my life, there is now an orderly sense of freedom because following a rhythm is not a time-bound exact science.
There will, of course, be times in your day that will be hard and fast rules such as the time you need to be at work, the time of day you need to feed your children and put them to sleep, or any appointments you’ve made — other than that following a rhythm is completely flexible.
4. Creates balance
Establishing household rhythms brings our lives back into balance in two ways.
First, we are surrounded by rhythm in nature–the rising and setting of the sun, the phases of the moon, and the changing of the seasons. Our bodies are also permeated with rhythm — the beating of our hearts and the rhythmic quality of our breath. However, our modern lives with all its modern technologies have led us away from these natural rhythms. Following a rhythm thus creates harmony and balance where there has been discord in our lives.
Second, following a daily rhythm creates balance in our lives by alternating more active and passive activities. In Rudolf Steiner’s view, a ‘right rhythm’ alternated between times of expansion when we relate to others to times of contraction when we relate to ourselves in a steady organic flow. For more about this please read Establishing A Daily Rhythm under the heading ‘make it flow.’
5. Builds in rest and self-nurturing
Establishing a daily rhythm automatically builds in rest and self-nurturing because following a daily rhythm requires that periods of activity are followed by periods of rest. A rhythm flows with the breath as periods of expansion where we relate to others are followed by periods of contraction where we relate to ourselves. This may not be the case when other schedules or forms of time management are used.
Other forms of time management quite often spend too much time on the active expansive side of the equation and this can be detrimental for many reasons. You can not give what you don’t get. It is necessary to create the space to rest and rejuvenate or find solace in quite creative pursuits each and every day. Following a daily rhythm fights burn out while assuring that this need is met.
6. Pro-act instead of react
Establishing rhythm in your life will make you less reactive and more proactive. When I’m not following a rhythm I find that I can do nothing but constantly react to the life that is happening to me. Overwhelm and chaos rules my world as I struggle to deal with daily life.
Following a rhythm prepares me for times when life throws something at me from out of left field, I find myself much better able to remain calm within the rising storm. My rhythm carries me and holds me steady through even the most challenging times of my life. I have found that creating a household rhythm has provided my family the support that we need to get through our every day and those days–a true blessing.
7. Builds in discipline
Following a daily rhythm in the home is a built-in form of discipline. Because the young child is centered in the body and in imitation, Rhythm is one of the most important keys to discipline. Sudden changes and a disorganized flow to the day cause infants and young children to erupt at the slightest provocation.
Rhythm both guides the child’s life through the creation of positive daily habits and helps avoid arguments and problems. This is especially true for children that have difficulty with transitioning from one activity to the next. For these children [like mine] rhythm is both a miracle and a blessing.
Rhythm in home life can also help calm a nervous or difficult child by turning the child’s life into a series of events in which he participates, and from which he gains a new sense of security and competency. Regular mealtimes and regular nap and bedtimes start orienting the child to a natural feeling for the passing of time. They go a long way toward preventing discipline problems, because bedtimes become something that happen as regularly as the sky turning dark–there is no one to argue with or complain to each night.” (Dancy Kindle Loc 2103)
I don’t know if my child would go to bed if it weren’t for her bedtime routine. We have been following the same rhythm following dinner leading to bed since she was an infant — long before we knew how much trouble she was going to have with transitions. This is the rhythm that carries her to bed without incident [most of the time] every night of her life. It is all she knows, and that’s why it works so well.
Regularity should prevail in as many of the child’s activities as possible — It is the key to establishing good habits for life. It is possible, however, to change well-established rhythms.
For more on creating positive habits, read Creating Positive Habits.
8. Benefits the children in the home and makes child care easier for caregivers
Establishing a rhythmical home life will nourish both you and your family. Following a rhythm is especially important for infants and young children. Children thrive when they have a basic idea of what will come next in their day, and can not handle it when a frenzy of activity surrounds them. When home life is chaotic and disorganized they will be unable to make sense of things and this causes all sorts of related issues–tantrums, emotional problems, sleep issues, and a general lack of cooperation.
Rhythm helps children know what comes next in their day and often helps with transitions because most children excel within the familiar. They most need to know about when they will be feed and put to bed — these are the anchors of their day and are thus the only rhythmical parts of the day that should occur at about the same time every day.
Other parts of the day can be approximated as long as this always follows that. When you follow a daily rhythm where this always follows that–lunch always follows outside free play, and your child’s nap always follows lunch. They begin to know and understand what will come next and will be ready for the transition–most of the time anyway–toddlers will be toddlers and kids will be kids.
Rhythm also offers the child more independence because they know what to expect and can begin to both help you and themselves. When children are older the framework provided by the rhythm of home life will transform into an inner self-discipline that will be an invaluable asset. They will be better at getting their homework done, assisting with housework, and meeting other obligations. This habit will influence them for the rest of their lives. Why wouldn’t you want to provide that ability for your children when it is as simple as establishing a weekly rhythm in your home.
9. Easily create positive habits and replace negative ones
Establishing a daily rhythm will easily allow you to create new positive habits in your life. Once you establish a rhythm and it becomes a habit, the opportunity to add new positive habits to your day will surface. The best way to do this is to add them one by one slowly over time so they take hold and stick becoming a daily part of your life. [See Creating Positive Habits for more information.]
Having this daily rhythm in place also lessens the ability of negative habits to resurface. The habits and routines that are a part of your daily rhythm will become stronger and stronger over time. Neurons that fire together wire together. The stronger your daily positive habits become, the less room you have for negative habits to move in and take over.
10. Provides a form of household management
Household rhythms encompass a myriad of activities from day-to-day and can include everything you and your family need to run your home. All personal, business and household needs should be given a regular space within the daily, weekly, and seasonal household rhythms. When we make time for everyone’s needs in the household, including the needs of your home itself, following your rhythms will assure that these needs are met.
A Daily rhythm is one long daily habit. Once established it can keep you on track and help you live a more balanced and productive life and will allow you to find freedom within the structure of your every day.
The links below are Amazon affiliate links to some of my favorite parenting books about rhythm in the home. I earn a very small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for choosing to support this blog!
- Beyond the Rainbow Bridge: Nurturing Our Children from Birth to Seven by Barbara J. Patterson and Pamela Bradley.
- You Are Your Child’s First Teacher, Third Edition: Encouraging Your Child’s Natural Development from Birth to Age Six by Rahima Baldwin Dancy
- Heaven on Earth: A Handbook for Parents of Young Children by Sharifa Oppenheimer
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