The Power of Routines and Habits

2 min read
Evidence based
Psychiatrist and Sensa consultant dr. Monisha Vasa
By Monisha Vasa, MD Updated on 2024 Jan 23

Our routines and habits define who we are and what we’re going to achieve in life. Most of us have at least one bad habit, even if it’s just that we spend too much time watching Netflix. But we also have good habits, too.

Better still, we have the power to change our habits and to create new ones, and once we’ve made them a habit, they become second nature. They turn into a gift that keeps on giving as we can continue to benefit from them for as long as we maintain the habit.

At Sensa, one of our goals is to help people create healthier habits. Routines and habits are an important part of that.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, it became easy for us to lose track of our time and forget the routines that we’d established. This lack of a schedule has made many people more uncomfortable and ill-at-ease than they might have imagined.

Roman Solhkhah, MD of Jersey Shore University Medical Center, explains, “While many of us complain about how busy our schedules are, it represents expectations and patterns that are an important component of good mental health. The pandemic has left many people feeling adrift because those daily routines that were essential to us before the COVID-19 crisis have evaporated and been replaced by uncertainty and a lack of structure that can contribute to stress, anxiety, and even clinical depression.”

Routines are important for a variety of reasons, including:

  • They provide structure
  • They give us a sense of accomplishment
  • They let us know how we’re doing

Remember that it doesn’t have to be difficult to implement healthy routines and habits. If we’re struggling, we can start with some of the simpler ones, like waking up at the same time and drinking enough water each day.

Some other simple routines that we can all implement include:

  • Showering as if you’re going to go out
  • Getting dressed for the day
  • Eating meals at regular times
  • Sticking to a daily exercise routine
  • Limiting your use of electronic devices
  • Going to bed at the same time

The good news is that Sensa offers more than 30 positive activities for you to make a part of your daily routine, meaning that you can take your pick. Start with what seems the easiest and slowly add more until you’ve established a bunch of positive daily habits. Good luck!

Psychiatrist and Sensa consultant dr. Monisha Vasa

Dr. Monisha Vasa is a board-certified psychiatrist and wellness consultant with a thriving private practice in Newport Beach, California. She’s actively engaged in supporting physician mental health at UC Irvine and City of Hope National Cancer Center.