My final piece of the Kick Ass series is here! I want to see you build a business and a life that works for you and I believe that starts with how we engage with our existence on a daily basis. Below I've shared 10 of the things I do each day to stay proactive and engaged with my business, life and truest desires every single day! Enjoy!
Oh yeah and by the way, don't even worry about taking notes! I went ahead and prepared a FREE downloadable checklist for you here. Download it, try a few things out in your day tomorrow and let me know how it feels! Download yours here.
For any creative entrepreneur, the act of writing daily is a game changer. I've found it incredibly helpful for digesting my day, clearing my mind of worry, and spurring creative movement in my life. Touching base with yourself each day is the key to making sure you are enjoying your life and making moves in a direction that feels good to you! Check in daily and make adjustments when needed.
2. Drink warm lemon water.
This is a tip picked up from Lily Calfee at Ideal Nourishment. I expressed to her that I would wake up feeling a bit nauseous in the morning and not wanting to eat. She suggested trying warm lemon water and it blew my mind! It's more than just helping to spur my appetite in the morning, but, it shoots energy through my bones, makes me feel more awake and gives me a small grounding ritual in the mornings.
3. Listen to podcasts.
I listen to a podcast every single morning. Sometimes two. I don't like to start my day with business, so, if I listen to a podcast while I'm getting ready, I usually listen to something a bit spiritual and connecting. A few podcasts like that which I love are: Date Yourself Radio, Awaken Radio, Honor the Feminine Podcast, Life Coach School Podcast, and Being Well with Lauren. Then, I listen to a business oriented podcast in my car throughout the day. The business podcasts that I'm really feeling right now are: Online Marketing Made Easy, The Goal Digger Podcast, The Brand You, Get Gutsy, and The Coffee Commute.
The fastest way to get left behind in your business is to stop learning. I want to remain open to knew ideas, knowledge and different approaches. It's also incredibly important for me to fill my mind with varied thoughts and ideas to share with my clients. I want to make sure I can show up when they have a problem that I haven't personally faced.
4. Take a real lunch break.
Far too often I have 'worked' through lunch as an attempt to get more done. When we do that we often find ourselves not getting anything done anyway. It's hard to eat and work at the same time. There have been several studies peeking out lately that prove multi-tasking isn't effective. So, let's stop trying to make that a thing! Why half work and half eat when we can just whole work and whole eat? Be fully present for what you are doing. Give yourself a rest in the middle of the day, focus on eating foods that nourish your body, take the time that nourishes your mind, and maybe even grab a walk around the block while you are at it. I promise that you will return to work more energized, focused, eager, and creative.
A couple of things to keep in mind so that your lunch break can work for you and not against you: eat foods that energize you and keep your body feeling awake ( veggies, protein, healthy fats ) try to avoid foods that leave you feeling sluggish and and like you need to take a nap (fried foods, simple carbohydrates, refined sugars). Set a time limit. I really enjoy an hour for my lunch break. But, with the right activity or the right people that can easily turn into a 2-hour lunch break if I'm not careful. Set a time limit, communicate that to your lunch buddies or even set a timer if you need to!
5. Plan the next day in advance.
At the end of my workday I always review my to-do list from the day and write my to-do list for the next day. Then, I review my schedule for the following day and make a rough plan for which tasks I will work on during which hours. An incredible common area of wasted time happens in the morning when you are deciding which task to start with. Nip that in the bud by prepping for it the day before. I always know that in the morning I will write, handle my e-mails and then jump into the first task that I planned for that day.
6. Win the day lists.
Every day I take 3-5 tasks from my to-do list and I put them in a special section titled, "Win the Day." These are the 3-5 tasks that have to get accomplished that day for me to feel like I've had a successful work day. I start my day with those tasks and go from there. That way, if I finish them up early I can either ride the productivity momentum and knock a bunch of other stuff out or I can go to the gym, go on a hike, make out with my fiance', or catch a movie. Basically, I can play for a bit.
7. Unplug for dinner time.
I always had a friend or two growing up whose parents wouldn't let you call them during dinner time. It was just not allowed, that was family time. In a world where I phones house our lives, it can be difficult to have an uninterrupted moment in time. Our house practices unplugged dinner time. In my dreams this is a full hour where we truly connect to one another and get so carried away in conversations about what we hope for our lives that we forget our phones exist. In reality it's a tiny bit awkward and one of us usually bolts for our phone before the others are even finished eating. That makes me sad, but, we are practicing because presence is important.
8. Wash your face. (or some other nightly ritual)
I've been trying for years to find a nightly routine that truly brought me into a state of relaxation and primed me for sleep. I pretend to drink hot tea for a while, I tried reading, and I've even tried meditation videos. But, it wasn't until I started washing my face that I got it. True confession: up until recently my skincare routine was just scrubbing my face with a warm washcloth when I was in the shower. But, I recently started practicing a morning and nightly habit of washing my face. It's relaxing, it's quiet (I don't get a lot of quiet), it's slooooow paced ( I'm always looking for more slow paced) and it's a tiny reminder to love on myself each day.
9. E-mail hour.
If you read my blog about how I manage my e-mail inbox than you know about this already, if you haven't, you can check it out here. (I go a lot more in-depth into this there.) But, I only require myself (and in fact, I encourage myself) to check my e-mail at the beginning and at the end of my work day. This allows me to stay focused on the tasks at hand and not spend the entire day in reactionary mode. It also gives me a plan so that I don't find myself ghosting on my clients and forgetting to respond to e-mails. If I must give up one of those time slots for responding, I choose to do the end of the day. This is because I am at the top of my game in the morning. I have more energy to offer my clients at that point of the day.
10. Prepare for health.
On my best days I prep my lunch in the morning, I pack healthy snacks, and I schedule in when I will move my body that day. I keep a packed bookbag with my gym clothes that I put in the back of my car. This allows me to pop into the gym in the middle of the day. I've found that the more prepared we are to have a healthy lifestyle the easier it is to make that happen. And having a healthy lifestyle is one of the easiest way to prevent burning out in our work life!
If you are feeling a bit lonely and out of sorts in business right now, you may be a good fit for my partnership program. I'm partnering with 10 businesses for the next quarter to help them work through their systems, become more productive, less lonely and enhance their confidence. It's great for you if you are wanting to take your business to the next level, need more free time or want to turn your side hustle into your full-time career. Read more about it here.