- Find quiet time. Take time without screens and distractions to just relax and be quiet every single day, even if it's just 10 minutes (but strive for more). Be still and listen. You can meditate or visualize, or just sit with your eyes closed for a few minutes. You cannot hear inspiration from the universe if there is too much noise and chatter in your daily life. I do a structured visualization every night before bed or in the morning before work. I think about the upcoming appointments that I have and the tasks I need to do, and then I visualize the results I’d like to see and how I want to feel as a result. I've seen a direct correlation between my visualizations and how my day actually goes. Envisioning my day in the best possible way has tremendously improved the quality of that day.
- Exercise, even if you don't think you need to. I'm thin, at a healthy weight, and have no health conditions, but I still exercise several days a week. Among the many health benefits, it helps improve my mood. It helps manage stress and ward off disease. It's just a good way to start your day and get your blood flowing. I firmly believe that if you're too busy to take care of your body, then you're simply too busy. You need to cut something out of your schedule. You're either working too much, watching too much TV, or filling your time with something that's less important. Each of us gets only one body, and we need to take care of it. Exercise is something you do for the long game. Start today; it doesn't have to be much. I only do about 20 minutes, but I do it almost every single day. If I have more time, I do more. I'm not naturally athletic or particularly love working out, so I've had to change my mindset. I always feel better after working out.
- Drink a lot of water every single day. I have struggled with this one myself. It's easy to neglect staying hydrated when you get busy and distracted. When I drink a lot of water, I feel so much better. I have more energy and more mental focus, which makes me feel more productive and more successful. I keep a water bottle on my desk each day. If you are not carrying a water bottle with you everywhere you go, start now. Your body craves water. In fact, it doesn't want coffee in the morning; it wants water. I've almost completely cut back on coffee because it dehydrates me and leaves my mouth feeling super dry. If you need to drink something other than water, go for tea, which is mostly water. Hydrate to set yourself up for success.
- Eliminate distractions. When I am sitting at my desk and I've got a particular task to work on, I eliminate other distractions. I silence my phone or put it away. I close my email and text messaging app. I close everything that can be closed, and I put total focus on that one task. Multitasking is a myth and it does not work. Multitasking means you're doing a few things halfway or half-assed. When you eliminate all distractions, you can get one thing done to completion and done well, which is so much better than doing three things halfway. If you need to tell people in your home or in your office that you are busy and can’t be interrupted, do it. My household knows better than to interrupt me during a coaching session or a podcast recording. Total engaged focus works wonders. Try it.
- Limit social media. I have all but eliminated social media, except for LinkedIn. I have virtually no Facebook presence, and I deleted my Twitter account years ago. I've even installed a Chrome extension in my browser that gets rid of my newsfeeds. I also avoid scrolling on social media. In addition to being a waste of time, it contributes to "monkey mind", and other attention problems that so many of us have today. I've chosen LinkedIn as my one platform, and I use it for business purposes only. Take a look at how much time you're spending on social media and what it's actually doing for you. It may seem like just a few minutes here and there, but it's always more. There’s also psychological effects to using social media, like decreased confidence and fueled anxiety and depression. Reducing the amount of time you spend on social media benefits your productivity and your mental health.
- Cut back on TV. My family will vouch that I watch very little TV. I was fortunate to grow up in a home that didn't watch much TV, and it's not a habit I ever picked up. I'm more interested in reading or journaling, taking a walk, or doing something that doesn't involve a screen. It's okay to watch one or two shows here and there, but if you make watching TV a nightly habit, consider what else you could be doing with that time. You could be reading a book, spending time with your family, exercising, working on your business, or job hunting. Just think: you will have time for those things that you keep saying you don't have time to do! We always have enough time, we just need to think wisely about how to spend it.
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