Learn how to plan your daily routine to get organized, ease transitions, increase productivity, keep your household, business, or classroom, running smoothly; find the time for self-care, and the freedom to do what you love with a Waldorf Daily Rhythm!
A daily rhythm is a daily routine or schedule that can create a powerful framework for your day. Follow a strong daily routine to increase productivity, help your children thrive, and find the time to do the things you have always dreamed of.
It is more than likely that you and your family have some routine that helps you get through the day. If not, odds are you are desperate to create systems that work, and that is why you have found yourself here.
Create a daily routine to give structure to your day and get things done. When you allow your daily rhythm to carry you through your day, good habits will become a way of life, and you will learn how important the power of routine is in the home.
What is a Daily Rhythm?
A Waldorf daily rhythm is a flexible form of time management that directs your daily and weekly routines and tasks. Following a strong daily routine can increase productivity, help children thrive, and free up space in your schedule for the things that matter most.
A Waldorf daily rhythm is a lot like a schedule without the rigidity. A daily routine with the “right rhythm” allows for change and flexibility where a minute by minute schedule falls short. A powerful daily routine can also help you find the time for self-care and the freedom to do the things you have always dreamed of doing.
How to Plan Your Daily Routine
Use the step by step instructions listed below to learn how to plan your daily routine to ease transitions, get organized, increase productivity, and keep your household, business, or classroom running smoothly.
The main idea is to create systems that turn your most important tasks into daily habits to increase productivity and get things done. Building routines with a robust rhythm ensures that we don’t waste our time or perform actions of no value.
Get out a piece of paper, open up a new document, or click on the link to grab your free weekly rhythm planner to get started!
Step 1 – Write Down Daily Rhythm or Routine
Start by writing a list of everything you currently do or would like to fit into your daily rhythm and weekly routine on a blank sheet of paper. This list can include current systems, daily and weekly chores, morning and evening routines, regularly occurring appointments, time for work, fitness, running errands, completing projects, family activities, self-care, and playtime!
Step 2 – Establish Anchors or Main Points of Your Daily Rhythm
Establish the main points, or anchors, of your day. These main anchors can be mealtimes, the start and completion of your workday, nap times if you have small children in the house, before and after school, etc.
The idea is to use the main actions that you repeat daily as the anchors or systematic parts of the day that you plan everything around. Many people like to separate their day with breakfast, lunch, and dinner, while others prefer to divide their day before school or work, during school or work, and after school or work.
If you have downloaded the free weekly rhythm planner, you will see that we have provided several different options to use as anchors already typed in. We have also included a page where the gray anchor spaces are left blank to make it easy to write in the anchor points that you prefer.
You will only need to use one of these pages. First, choose the weekly planner with the anchor points that best fit your needs or use the sheet with the blank anchor spaces to write in the anchors you prefer.
We like wet-erase markers better than dry erase markers because they don’t rub off as you write and are just as easy to clean with a cloth and a little water.
Step 3 – Add “Right Rhythm” Into Your Daily Routine
Rudolf Steiner, the founder of Waldorf education, spoke of rhythm as flowing with the breath. He said that the “right rhythm” is a balanced combination of activities where we breathe in or inhale and breathe out or exhale.
As a yoga instructor, I resonate with the idea that our daily routine should flow with the breath as we move from task to task. When we inhale, we immerse ourselves in internal or “being” activities. And when we exhale, we are primarily engaged in external or “doing” activities.
In other words, our daily rhythm should follow periods of expansion–breathing out–where we relate to the external world with periods of contraction–breathing in–where we refer to the inner world, or ourselves.
Too crunchy for you?
The take-home is this–when you create your daily routine and weekly rhythm, you want to alternate between “being” and “doing.” In other words, follow expansive or energetic activities with relaxing activities and support these quiet periods with busyness.
How does following a “Right Rhythm” Help?
Right rhythms can help you use to power of habit to change your life.
When you perform active high energy activities or passive low energy activities at a similar time each day, your body, mind, and spirit will all be prepared for the task at hand; whether it is going for a walk, doing chores, running errands, eating lunch, meeting with an important client, or going to bed for the night.
There is no need to alter being and doing with every small step that you take. The idea is not to spend too much time at either extreme. Make sure your day flows between “being” and “doing” by alternating relaxing self-nurturing activities such as meditation, yoga, arts and crafts, eating, and spending time in nature, with external high energy activities such as completing to do’s, errands, and chores.
Over time creating systems with the “right rhythm” can develop good habits and a powerful daily routine because it will prepare your mind and body for the type of task you have planned for each moment of your day. This is how you choose to create the life of your dreams… One habit, system, or goal at a time.
Related: 10 Reasons to Make Rhythm a Habit
Step 4 – Write Your Daily and Weekly Routine in your Weekly Planner
Use your planner to create systems for success. Start by writing down your basic daily rhythm and weekly routine. The idea is to assign the spaces before and after your anchor points to complete specific tasks (chores, errands, work, exercise) and to have most of these tasks, excluding singular appointments and events, repeat every week.
Design daily routines and weekly rhythms to make our most important tasks into daily habits to increase productivity. Creating reliable systems and following a regular rhythm ensures that we don’t waste our time or perform actions of no value.
If you are using the free weekly rhythm planner that uses breakfast, lunch, and dinner as the anchors, you can also use your weekly planner as a meal planner. Write the meals that you would like to prepare down in the corresponding spaces!
Learn more about combining daily systems and weekly rhythms into one big harmonious whole in household rhythms.
Step 5 – Go With the Flow: Finding Rhythm in Routine
I like to think of a rhythm as a series of routines and tasks combined in a harmonious flow. Once it’s there, you simply let your day unfold around it, allowing your daily rhythm to carry you as you quickly move from task to task. The idea is to turn everything that you do on a daily and weekly basis into a habit that you no longer have to think about executing.
When you no longer have to think about what you need to do next, you will efficiently complete your daily goals. This simple task can free up the space required to do the things you have always dreamed of fitting into your schedule!
Take your time, and do your best not to get discouraged. It takes time and effort to establish new habits. Establishing a daily rhythm and weekly routine is one long daily and weekly system or habit.
Once your daily systems and routines become a habit, they will support you even on the most challenging days. You may not know what to do next, but your rhythm will.
Just stay calm and go with the flow. You’ll know when you have found your groove when you move smoothly through your day without having to look at what comes next or think about your next activity–this is true freedom.
Waldorf Homeschool Daily Rhythm
Establish a daily routine or rhythm to ease transitions, get organized, keep your household (or classroom) running smoothly, find the time to connect with your children, and still have time for self-care!
Use your daily rhythm as the framework that carries you through your day as you effortlessly flow from task to task. Below you can see an example of a basic daily routine… our Waldorf daily rhythm!
Daily Routine Example
We don’t follow this exact routine minute by minute every single day. There are a lot of variants in our day to day routine and household rhythms, but this generally follows that as we flow from day to day and week to week.
Some days flow more smoothly than others. Following a Waldorf daily rhythm can help the smooth days become more frequent over time.
Update: Now that our daughter has formally entered Waldorf education (which we highly recommend) our daily rhythm has changed entirely. We used the daily routine listed below when we ran a home daycare and homeschooled our daughter during preschool years.
The daily routine below could also be used and adapted by homeschoolers with children of all ages. Make all naptimes and playtimes learn through play school time, and make the outdoor adventure educational. And, don’t forget to incorporate seasonally-appropriate reading and storytelling into your morning circle activities.
Daily Rhythm Ideas
You can find all kinds of fun ways to get through your day as you learn through play on Rhythms of Play. That’s why we’re here!
A few of our favorite ideas to get you started are listed below. The suggestions follow the same order as the Waldorf daily rhythm listed above. We have even included a few of our favorite meal options!
- Kids Yoga: Tips on Getting Started
- Apple Pie Oatmeal
- How to Raise a Helper
- Forest School: Outdoor Learning Ideas and Nature Activities
- Art and Craft Ideas
- How to Teach Kids to Sew with Burlap and Yarn
- Homemade Vegetable Lasagna
- Books That Teach Kids Important Life Lessons
- Read Aloud Fairy Tales and How They Benefit Development
Plan your Daily Routine and Weekly Rhythm
Creating daily and weekly routines and household rhythms can help make it easier for parents, caregivers, and educators to get through each day.
Following a daily rhythm or routine can help ease transitions, increase productivity, and get organized for good!
Find the freedom within the structure of your day with a daily routine and weekly rhythm that works for you and your family!
Learn more about Rhythms of Play HERE!
More Information About Daily Rhythm and Weekly Routines for Parents and Caregivers:
- 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 Rahima Baldwin Dancy
- Heaven on Earth: A Handbook for Parents of Young Children by Sharifa Oppenheimer
We have also located a few great Waldorf daily rhythm resources on the world wide web that we have listed below.
- Daily Rhythm at Home and its Lifelong Relevance by Helle Heckmann
- Understand Rhythm in Waldorf Homeschooling by Jean over at Waldorf-Inspired Learning