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Positive Rituals That Get You In The Zone

Simple strategies to help you quickly gain traction.

We can leverage simple, wholesome “rituals” to create positive associations that quickly uplift our mood or prepare us for focus and productivity.

Rainy days make me want to curl up in a chair with a pot of tea and a good book, pull out a notepad to do some deep thinking or planning, or even settle in for a nap.   Listening to ocean waves roll up on the beach stirs my creativity, and the white noise of a coffee shop increases my focus.  

Feeling chilly, or working without natural light makes me feel restless and distracted. It’s the death knell for my creativity.

The right rituals can help you breakthrough writer’s block, plow through that to-do list in record time, or snap you out of the doldrums.

Rituals have the power to create associations
that condition us to subconsciously shift into
a certain mood, train of thought, or pattern of behavior.

Annette Chesney
Disempowering Associations:
  • Working in your home-based office in yoga pants, hair in a ponytail, and no makeup can sap your professional confidence. You’ll find yourself less likely to focus on business while you’re in front of your computer too.
  • A song comes on the radio and you’re instantly transported to another time when that guy broke your heart. Suddenly you’re on a rabbit trail of emotions and blow up your morning stalking him on social media.
  • You plan to catch up on your list by working the second half of your day at home. You walk in the door, change into sweatpants, lose the bra, and walk back into the living room.  Just like that, your get-‘er done motivation evaporates and you’re sucked into the gravitational pull of ice cream and Netflix.

Rituals are a series of simple actions
or experiences that become associated together,
conditioning you to elicit particular responses on autopilot.

Annette Chesney

Knowing this, you can defuse a negative association by overwriting it with a new, positive ritual. Or create a ritual designed to elicit a positive frame of mind and get you in the zone faster.

Consider these empowering rituals:
  • Design a ritual to help you be present with God much faster.
    Trying to pray or do your bible study but your mind is bouncing all over? Do a 1 minute brain dump onto paper to eliminate the noise. Play a worship song on your phone and listen intently to the lyrics, or even sing along.  

    Create a special atmosphere by adding a candle, hot coffee or tea, and a basket holding your quiet time supplies next to your favorite cozy chair.   Want to take it to the next level?  Set up a prayer closet.

  • Establish a morning ritual to get moving in a positive frame of mind.
    Set your alarm tone to be birds chirping or gentle music.  Have a lamp in the room set to turn on automatically with a timer.   

    The night before, put a glass of water on your nightstand. Lay out a pair of yoga pants and t-shirt in readiness on the end of the bed. 

    Type out a scripturally based affirmation such as “This is the day the Lord has made.  I will rejoice and be glad in it”. Frame it and set it on your nightstand next to your water so you see it immediately.  Say it out loud as the first words you speak, then drink the water to hydrate yourself.  

    Change out of pj’s into your yoga pants and make the bed the instant your feet hit the floor. This will eliminate the temptation to crawl back under the covers.  Invest a couple minutes doing some gentle stretching. Go up and down the stairs twice to get the blood flowing. Then head to the kitchen to get your coffee and sit in your quiet time chair with God.  

    Already you’re in a pleasant frame of mind and feeling on top of your day.

  • Implement a 5 minute power ritual to increase your confidence and focus before an important meeting.
    Record yourself speaking 2 minutes of relevant declarations (biblically based is even stronger). Listen to it while sitting with your eyes closed, engaging your emotions with what’s being spoken. 

    For 2 minutes picture Jesus standing next to you as you give the presentation calmly, with clarity and authority. 

    Invest 1 minute decreeing that no matter the outcome, He is in control. You can trust Him to work all things together for good.

Where do you get stuck? 

Harness the power of positive ritual in your daily life. It will quickly lift your mood, increase focus, or overcome a negative association that’s been derailing you.

Need help designing constructive daily rituals that help you get in the zone?

Share about it in the Beautiful Life Virtual Cafe and let’s chat!