#73: Habits vs. Rituals

Mar 30, 2023 | Podcast

Habits and rituals, two seemingly different words, but really tied very closely together, one just holds a little more power than the other.

This episode is brought to you by the Intention-setting {Ritual} Worksheet.

Download your copy here.

Habits vs. Rituals…

Rituals sometimes get a bad rap…people equate them to everything from religious ceremonies to pagan worshiping ceremonies, but in all actuality, rituals are really just a way of deepening intention and connection.


Defined by Oxford Dictionary: “A settled or regular tendency or practice, especially one that is hard to give up.”

Automatic or cultivated over time, with or without thinking or intention. Habits can be positive or negative.



Meaning, you are comfortable with it.  It’s familiar and often effortless for you to do. 

When intentionally beginning a new habit, it’s not always “settled” though.  It takes practice and consistency (check out Episodes 68 & 69 for more on that).

And of course, there are endless tips out there to help make habits stick and make them more effortless – two of my favorite books on this are:

Atomic Habits, James Clear

Essentialism, Greg McKeown


“Regular Tendency”

Meaning, it happens often.  You may start and stop practicing or doing the habit depending on various cyclical or seasonal reasons, but they are still regular.  And because they are, they can be hard to change or break.

Some habits are so set in your psyche that you don’t even realize you’re doing them, which means it takes awareness first to begin to change them. 



My definition: A sacred way of putting your spirit and authenticity into a habit to give it more meaning in your life. An intentional act that results from an increase in the amount of attention or energy you put into it.



It’s about putting intention into something that you do over and over again so that when you do it, it creates a specific outcome.

And once you’ve created the outcome you want, you can do things like anchor in that state so that you can return to it even when you haven’t done a particular ritual.

It might even encourage you to continue on with a habit because it creates a specific feeling when you do the ritual.

Losing it’s Luster

When rituals become rote or just going through the motions, it’s a signal that something needs to change or be adjusted within the ritual to bring the meaning back to it.  That might just be remembering why you do the ritual in the first place or that it is indeed a ritual and not just a habit.


Although rituals are a part of religion and many other pagan ceremonies, they really have nothing to do with religion, and everything to do with habits.


When Habit Becomes Ritual

A habit that becomes so familiar that you can give it more meaning by making it a ritual, by making it more special or important in your life–elevating it or going deeper with it. And by doing so, it gets anchored into your psyche as positive and something you want to keep coming back to.

It fulfills something within you that may not otherwise be filled simply by going through the motions.

Rituals can even make mundane tasks that are hard to do or that you don’t want to do more enjoyable.


How to Create a Ritual

Incorporate things that put you in the frame of mind that you want to be in — calm, safe, present, connected, etc.

Anything can become ritualistic.

Light a candle, get your favorite beverage or treat, etc.

Clear the air or space with a spray or sage or palo santo.

Bring in things that inspire you or that you feel connected to–stones, candles, favorite pen or journal.



Rituals help you feel more connected to regular, daily habits or things you do to care for yourself and bring more intention to your life.

Rituals deepen impact. They bring meaning and connection. And sometimes that connection is simply with knowing yourself on a deeper level, and sometimes it’s just helping you come back to the present moment instead of living for the future or in the past.


This episode is brought to you by the Intention-setting {Ritual} Worksheet.

Atomic Habits, James Clear

Essentialism, Greg McKeown

To know where you are in your Energetic Rhythms Cycle, download the Daily Rhythms Tracker.

Join the Energetic Rhythms for Intentional Living community here.

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More episodes like this one:

#52: Intention-setting for Focus in Life, Energetic Rhythms Phase 1

#68: How to Make Transitions Effortless, Part 1

#69: Three Essentials to Make Transitions Effortless, Part 2

Disclosure:  Because I like connecting others with resources that I have used and found to work well in my life, I want to be completely transparent with you.  Some of the links within this post are affiliate links from Amazon; as an Amazon Associate I earn  from qualifying purchases at no additional cost to you. I only promote products that align with my values and with what I truly believe to work, not because of the commission I receive on them. So if you do decide to purchase something from one of these links, thank you!

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