Breaking your routine and schedule breaks your pace and momentum. The moment you backslide and meander into a change in your routine...watch yourself.
King David left the battle to his Army Chief of Staff, Joab, and found himself with too much time on his hands and made a huge mistake with another man's wife. He should have kept to his routine. He had to be in the battle.
Sun Tzu recollects anecdote after anecdote where military leaders left their routines, left their adherence to the guideposts that ensure victory and lost in battle.
Just changed jobs..look out!
Just got married... look out!
Moved to a new house...look out!
Starting college....look out!
Look out every time you change your regular schedule...
Getting back from vacation...look out!
Dropped out of school.... look out!
Have a disciplined schedule and it will keep you.
Get back to your regular times that worked so well before. Never arrive. Never tell yourself you have made it and can now rest.... a little bit.
Live like a machine on a schedule. You are not a machine, but live by a routine and your executive function skills will not grow weak, but strong as an ox.
Get inoculated against backsliding on your daily routines that are healthy. It is free of harmful metals, mercury, aluminum, and won't harm your neurological health, but bolster it.
Having a holiday, quit it soon. Don't place yourself into the vacation state of mind for too long. It is the kiss of death. Their is work to be done. Their are plows that need shoulders pushing it, no matter what your profession is.
It is good for a teenager to work, and sweat and toil. It is good for them to have a schedule. Force your kid to deliver a paper route, to work a job. Did they get fired? Make' em get another one. Did they get fired from that one too? Make them get another one. Don't give up on this no matter how many times your kid tanks the next job. The moment you break your routine as a parent, as an adult, as a professional...watch out. More good has ever come out from sticking to a schedule and a routine than ever will come from breaking the routine.
Don't stop by the tavern on the way home from work. Stick to your routine. If your routine is to drink alcohol with they guys and gals after work...break it. It makes you soft and complacent. Gives you a big belly, and it changes your metacognitive perception.
Are you a young professional with fire in your belly. Pray that you stick to your routine. Wake up early and be industrious. Don't backslide by telling yourself you can afford it. That's the sound of a routine breaking. That's when the military leaders in Sun Tzu's The Art of War lost the battle. The very moment... the quiet, almost insignificant moment they broke their routine and schedule.
Keep pace through your victories and defeats.
Pace, metacognition, sequencing and self-monitoring are executive function skills. Foresight short and long-term planning ahead are executive function skills. Self (emotional) control, goal-directed persistence and sustaining attention are executive function skills.
Don't have a routine? Establish one. I promise you that the silent moment you decide to throw in an additional path into your schedule is the moment you meander away from your routine. It starts out as a small thing, but your metacognitive outlook records and changes the horizon ever so slightly also. It is almost imperceptible.
Operate as if you have to keep securing your position way even if your position seems incredibly secure. Guard your thought process. The mind and heart can trick you into changing things up a bit...after all, look at all the hard work you have done. Surely, a little..........(and that's how the routine changes).
It may be that others are watching your moves also, and so you have a greater responsibility in not backsliding on your daily routine.