It’s really easy to lose your focus and let things slip especially in today’s day and age where we’re always ‘on’ whether it be with email, social media, mobile phones the list really can go on and on. The impact of this new world along with the additional pressure we put on ourselves can be seen through our visible stress levels which also ripples through to the people who are around us everyday such as family, loved ones, friends, work colleagues and let’s not forget the people we can quickly lose our patience with on the phone who are from our utility companies.
There are a few things I do to help manage my stress levels and while I will admit that I don’t stick to everyone of them to the tee I keep them in the back of my mind so that I know when I’m in need of making some adjustments during my day
Keep a clean and organised home, car and desk
When your home, work and car are messy your mind is also in the same state. Always keep your filing in order, tidy your desk every day, wash your car weekly and set time aside for your chores each week. If you’re like me I and don’t like cleaning your home don’t neglect it and just pay for a cleaner because it’s a small investment to help keep your mind clutter free.
I believe exercise is the most important influencer in getting things done. Exercise gives you motivation, it helps clear your mind, relieve stress and creates an instant ‘Can Do!’ attitude. I prefer to exercise at lunch time and I usually mix up my routines with running, cardio boxing or cross-fit workouts. Everyone is different so find something that suites you but focus on improving your fitness not just your physic . If a lunch session isn’t possible for you then exercise in the morning or at night time but if you’re exercising at night make sure it’s at least 3 hours before you go to bed.
I’m guilty of letting this slide from time to time, I would think most of us are! The key is to never skip a meal so have breakfast, lunch and dinner and for your snacks have fruit or even nuts so that you never go hungry. If your eyes take over from your stomach and lead you to bad food choices plan your meals the night before and write them down.
Plan the night before
Plan your day the night before, even better before you leave work at the end of your day. Things you want to include are all your personal tasks, work tasks and think give yourself some open space so if things pop up so that there is time in your day to handle them.
Don’t sleep in
This is pretty self explanatory, when your alarm goes off get up and start your day. When you sleep in and run late to work you start to stress and enter the office in the wrong state of mind which affects your entire day and the people around you.
Create a routine
Routines help keep everything in balance as they create order in what otherwise seems like chaos. Things to include in your routine include your exercise, personal development time, reading, when you eat etc. The most important part is sticking to the routine!
Use tools to organise your day
There are hundreds of tools available that can help you keep on top of your day. Some tools that I use and can recommend are:
- Email with Calendar (Google, Outlook)
- Google Docs
- Also create a weekly planning spreadsheet which includes your personal and business goals
Tackle the hardest things first
A lot of people tend to do all the small tasks first which are also the least important and by 4pm in the afternoon they are rushing around trying to complete a large task/project.. Sound familiar? Reverse this process and tackle the hardest tasks first then move on to the little items on your to do list or even better set aside time each day to do them.
Make time for your personal tasks
Never forget to include your personal tasks in your daily and weekly plan. Tasks can include getting a haircut, paying bills and catching up with friends. Like with everything schedule these items and don’t let anything else stop you from doing them, you need time for your personal life in your week as well.
Wind down at night
When you get home in the evening make sure you give yourself the chance to wind down either by reading, watching some TV or even cooking. I find the best time to go to bed is not when I’m already dead tired but when I’ve had some time to switch off and relax.
At the end of the day you want to be as productive as you can be and by keeping your life and balance in order is key to your own happiness. Have you got any other tips that you use? If so I would love to hear about them.
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