This content may look a bit familiar. It was originally published on our company website back in October of last year. The blog has since been taken down, so I decided to repost some of my favorites over here. I tried not to change much, so please forgive my run-on sentences. I promise that I have learned from my mistakes. Mostly.
This week has been a bit unusual. Andrew has finally moved to a normal day-shift schedule at his day job, so we have been adjusting to waking up early. On top of that, he has been working 12-hour shifts until they can find someone to replace his coworker who just left. That’s a topic for another day, though. My point is, things have been chaotic!
It has been so long since we have been on a normal schedule, I actually had to remember how to function and be productive instead of wanting to immediately go back to bed and waste half the day sleeping.
Maybe you have the same problem or are looking for some inspiration for starting your day productively and getting stuff done. If that’s the case, here are some awesome tips that I’ve learned.
Don’t Press Snooze
Don’t press that snooze button. It’s tempting to smash it a billion and a half times, but whatever you do, resist the urge. You are just making yourself more tired by telling your brain that you need more sleep. Even if you still feel tired, it’s better to just get up. After all, how much additional sleep can you possibly get in 5-8 minutes?
Get Out Of Bed (NOW)
Get out of bed. Like… immediately, even if your entire purpose of getting out of bed is to grab your phone and go sit on the couch to read the news or check your calendar. By leaving the bedroom, you are accepting the fact that rest time is over and it’s time to start your day.
Get Into A Routine
Get into a routine. Every day I wake up, get dressed, help Andrew get out the door on time (not that he needs much help), then I spend 90 minutes getting myself together in what I call my workday prep routine, at which time the rest of my day is planned out using a simple time management strategy. I stick to this routine every day, at least during the week, so I know what to expect and don’t have to figure out what to do first when my brain is still foggy from sleep.
Dress For Success (Or Just Change Your Clothes)
Dress for success. I don’t mean you need to wear a suit or heels, but at least put different clothes on. This is especially true if you work from home and have no plans to be seen or go outside, like me. You may even want to put shoes on (that part is optional). You’ll feel more productive once you change your clothes, even if you change out of one pair of leggings and a t-shirt for another pair of leggings and a t-shirt. You didn’t sleep in those clothes, so they aren’t your sleep leggings, they are your butt-kicking leggings. Different clothes, different mindset.
Set A Timer For Checking Email … Or Avoid It Completely
Schedule time for email and set a timer or avoid it altogether. I give myself 20 minutes during my workday prep to check email, but I don’t allow myself to respond to emails or go over the time limit. It can be easy to get lost in the mound of emails and lose track of time completely, but unless your goal for the day is to clean out your inbox, you are wasting precious time when you are the most awake and probably the most creative. Set your timer and stick to your routine. The rest of your emails can wait until later when you have scheduled more time to read and respond.
Eat The Frog / Swallow The Pill
Let’s say there is something you don’t feel like doing today, but you know it has to get done. It’s going to take a while and you aren’t even sure how to start. Plus, there are a few other things you need to do and they just seem so much more appealing. You have two choices – take the easy road and do the things you want to do, or swallow the pill and get that other thing done first. My advice to you is to swallow the pill. It might be unpleasant for a bit, but once you get started it will get easier. In doing so, you are saving the easier tasks for later when you might not have as much energy or motivation, and you are preventing yourself from doing those easy things slowly or finding other ways to procrastinate instead of doing the more difficult task.
Since I am just getting back into this normal routine, I’d love some input if you have any other tips for getting up and starting your day off on the right foot. What do you do to get moving?
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Any opinions expressed are strictly my own. If I wouldn’t eat, drink, or use something, neither should you (and I wouldn’t suggest otherwise).
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