For years now I’ve been fascinated by how successful people do what they do. I read about them on their blogs and in their books, and listen to their podcasts.
Something that they all seem to have in common is that they create routines and habits that support their success, so I thought I’d make my very first blog post about 8 of the best daily habits that I’ve tried.
The 8 Daily Habits
1. Create a Productive Morning Routine
I think that this is one of the most important of the daily habits – set yourself up in the right way first thing, and things will go smoothly all day!
“If you win the morning, you win the day”
Successful people often have their own special morning routine, so I recommend that you create your own routine that will get you on the right track for the day.
The sort of things you could put in your morning routine include:
- Making your bed
- Listening to a podcast
- Eating a healthy breakfast
- Walking the dog
- Listening to music
- Working on your side hustle
- Drinking water
- and many more…
It will take a bit of experimentation to see which ones work best for you, so keep at it!
2. Improve your Knowledge and Mindset
It’s important to keep yourself motivated, and to make sure that you are continually improving and learning – you cannot keep the same old ideas and actions and expect to succeed in your life and work.
The easiest way to stay on top of things is to read books and/or listen to podcasts. Find the people you admire and follow them on Facebook, Twitter etc. Many will have a regular podcast that you can listen to – get onto their mailing list and you will be notified each time there is an update.
I think it’s important to focus on self-improvement, so as well as experts in your field, seek out people who can help you be more productive, successful and motivated.
3. Create Routines that Achieve your Daily Goals
Find a way of working during the day that works for you. If you have the freedom of working from home, you can experiment with different working patterns to find the schedule that enables you to be most productive.
I realise you may have to fit your routine around your children’s school timetable, but if you experiment with different schedules it will soon be obvious which one works the best.
Once you have found your ideal schedule, stick to it, so you don’t have to keep making the same decisions over and over again.
4. Get Enough Sleep and Get Up at the Same Time Every Day
Go to bed early and rise early…especially if you’ve got other people in the house and you work from home, like me! If you get up before everyone else, then you will have lots of early morning peace and quiet to get your tasks done.
If you have trouble getting up in the morning, always getting up at the same time each day (even at the weekends) may help. Your body comes to know what time to get up, and you may find yourself naturally waking up at the “right” time.
I think that getting enough sleep is essential – you won’t be able to get up in the morning if you don’t go to bed early enough, and you won’t have enough energy to work towards your goals if you don’t sleep for long enough. I try to get 8 hours of sleep a night, but it doesn’t always happen that way!
If you find you can’t sleep once you are in bed, a relaxing bedtime routine can help. I’d recommend low lights, a hot milky (non-caffeine) drink, soothing music, and turning off your electronics.
5. Keep up the Exercise
Ideally, you should exercise every day, as it’s essential that you remain fit and healthy if you want to work to your full potential. I know it isn’t easy to fit in a full exercise routine every day, but trying to make it part of your morning routine can help.
If you can’t fit in a full-blown exercise session, try to at least do something to get your heart beating faster especially on the in-between days e.g. going for a walk at lunchtime or walking up and down the stairs rather than taking the lift or escalator. Perhaps a short yoga session at home in the evening?
I find walking the dog is a great one – it benefits me and Oscar at the same time!
6. Fuel your Body with Healthy Food and Drink Lots of Water
It is essential that you keep yourself as healthy as possible – if you are not healthy it becomes very difficult to work effectively.
One of the best ways to keep your body healthy is to fuel it with the food that provides all the different nutrients that it needs.
When I’m trying to decide if a particular food is healthy, I remember Tony Robbins’ advice: Ask yourself “Will that clog me or cleanse me?”
So if I’m at a restaurant trying to decide between a stodgy sticky pudding or a sorbet dessert, asking myself that question quickly shows me which one to choose! I can’t say that I stick to the “right” answer every time, but at least it makes me think about it!
Drinking enough water during the day is essential – it keeps you hydrated, keeps your skin looking bright and clear, helps you to digest your food, and even maintains your body temperature!
I often drink a mug of hot water (rather than tea or coffee) first thing in the morning as part of my morning routine – it re-hydrates me after sleep, and cuts down the amount of caffeine I have each da
7. Make Good Use of your Downtime
Don’t waste your time surfing the web or watching the news when you are relaxing. Watching one news bulletin a day is plenty.
I’d recommend turning off your news alerts. They are just distracting, and it’s been scientifically proven that reading negative news for just 3 minutes in the morning can increase the chances of having a bad day by 27%! (Harvard Business Review).
Do something more fulfilling with your downtime. Is there a hobby you can start up? I love sketching and drawing and I’m always trying to find time to squeeze some art in.
Is there something that you always wish you could find time for? Why not re-allocate some of your news and social media time to that and make good use of spare moments during the day!
8. Review Today and Prepare for Tomorrow Before Bed
Before you go to bed, think whether you achieved your goals for the day, and what you could do better tomorrow. Do you need to change your morning routine or your daily activities?
I try not to beat myself up (too much) if I don’t reach my daily goals but it makes me more determined to do it differently tomorrow.
Once you’ve reviewed the day, you can plan what’s going to happen tomorrow – what do you want to achieve? Are your goals for the day taking you towards your weekly or monthly goals?
Thinking about your goals each day (even just for a short time) greatly increases the chances of them being reached. The things that you focus on are the things that get achieved!
Something else I find really useful, especially if I’m short of time in the morning, is to put my clothes out ready for the next day – then I don’t need to spend time deciding what to wear in the morning (or finding the clothes).
Go For It!
It can be overwhelming to try and form 8 new habits all at the same time. I’d recommend choosing one or two of them and giving them a go – that way you can ease yourself in gradually and begin to feel the benefits without the overwhelm!
If you try these habits, let me know how you get on in the comments below – which is your favourite? Any that were absolute disasters? And do let me know if you’ve got any questions!
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