Have you ever heard the expression that this just isn't your day? That luck seems to play a factor in everyday decisions that will consequently make you question why you ever got out of bed in the first place. The world will present fresh hurdles for you to tackle every day. It could be anything from receiving an overdue utility bill or a flood of unwanted emails. The important thing is for you to be centred, focused and feel fresh in order for you to tackle these challenges and effectively conquer them without breaking your stride.
So what is the Best way to start the day? Like most things, if you want to know anything, just ask your Nan. Or Google. I pulled in some tips and collated the top 5 ways to have a more productive day.
First things First
It will make good sense not to bring the phone into the bedroom. Your partner will admire your discipline to turn off from the outside world and dedicate some quality time to her. If you use your phone as an alarm chances are you have it by the bed. Studies show 1 in 3 people check their phone at night and this cyclical behaviour will destroy your sleep patterns. Get an alarm clock. They've been around for a while and they never went out of fashion.
Be a Smoothie Criminal
As well as being a coffee addict, I'm also a huge fan of getting some good nutrients in my body first thing in the morning to kickstart my metabolism. Drinking a smoothie in the morning keeps you from indulging in empty carbohydrates like donuts, crisps, Belgium buns or other worthless elevenses. Having a decent smoothie maker is key, I've got a Mulitmax that’s a few years old now but gets the job done lickety-split. A smoothie for breakfast helps you get hydrated for the day, something soda and my beloved coffee won't do sadly. Since your body pulls water from many foods in order to stay hydrated, you won't have to drink water when you're sipping on a smoothie.
It’s also a good way to get through any fruit that might be on the turn. My fruit bowl always used to suffer a few casualties, life gets in the way sometimes and you don't always get around to eating everything you buy at the supermarket. But now it all gets bunged in the mix.
Anticipate the hurdles
Having a little time out before the day kicks into hyper drive with calls, texts, emails etc is something of a must for me. I get to structure what’s important and prioritise the big projects. There's a couple of online apps that can help you with this. If you're at the top of the food chain and need to delegate tasks to others, look no further than Brightpod. Management software designed to organize, manage and track all your SEO, social media, blog strategy, content marketing and design projects from one place to save time.
If you're a bit more old school like me I also like then writing things down, whiteboards and calendars have yet to be beat. I've recently tapped into this Productivity Planner. Basically the almanac of to-do lists.
I always thought this was a transatlantic load of hooey. Why would I need cold showers living in the UK, we get that just walking to the shops these days. However, there's numerous benefits for taking a cold shower in the morning, one being that it's good for your immune system as your body increases its number of virus fighting white blood cells. Another is it makes your skin look healthier by closing up your cuticles and pores. However, I like doing it for other reasons. I believe it helps me develop grit and intestinal fortitude. Survive a minute in a cold shower every morning and you're willing to tackle anything the day throws at you.
Stretch it out
Stretching is something you can incorporate into your routines. For example, if you're waiting for your morning eggs to boil simply spend a minute or two with one foot on the kitchen counter and attempt to arch your body over your ankle. Make sure you do it on both sides. Studies from The American College of Sports Medicine evangelize about morning stretching. They say it can also be useful when it comes to increasing blood flow to all parts of the body including the brain. Adequate blood flow increases concentration and sharpens senses.
Write it out
For most people writing things and jettisoning that morning mind clutter can be highly cathartic. If you've never written a diary before you might perceive it to be effeminate or adolescent. Keeping a morning journal is a great discipline and can help unload all of the superfluous thoughts that might be interfering with your goals. This form of journal isn't designed to win any Booker Prize awards. Don't think of it as your great novel that your kids will discover in the attic one day and publish posthumously. It's designed to crystallize your thoughts so you're not leaving the house with your mind behind the 8-ball.
OK but I don't write, where do I start?
If you're able to let out an unfiltered slew of roughly 500 words before you check any messages or media feeds, this will help you marshal those thoughts and prioritize the big concerns and even unearth some subliminal things you might have going on that will need addressing. Again don't be overly worried or creative this is an uncensored brain dump. Start by anticipating what your day could bring, mention what’s at the forefront of your mind and don't worry about how silly it might sound to others or yourself.