Table of Contents
20. Create a morning routine
The best way to start your day is with the right morning routine. This helps keep your mind clear of distractions and decision making. You should save your mind for critical items while working and not worrying about what to do when you wake up.
Set your alarm for the same time, exercise, eat breakfast and shower before work to get your body ready, while leaving your mind ready to tackle work later.
19. Preparation for the next day
Before you can start your day, you should be preparing for it the day before. As you are getting ready to leave work, put together a to do list of the things you will tackle tomorrow. This will help get those items off of your worry list as you know they will be taken care of the next day.
This will allow you to rest easily at night and will help you clear your mind as you relax after a long day of work. If you do not prepare this list you will be left with worry and stress of all the things left to do.
18. The right work environment
It is important to keep your work environment comfortable and personalized. The more you can make your work environment a positive place to be, the happier you will feel. Try to get some natural light and ventilation in the space.
If you can’t do that, spruce it up with some plants or even a desk aquarium to make it feel more comfortable. Make sure your chair is good and you are maintaining a good ergonomic workstation.
A part of the environment is the ability to limit distractions. When it comes time to focus you need to keep your mind on the task without distractions. When you stop your focus for even just a split second, it could take a few minutes to gather your thoughts once again.
Try to work away from the break areas, or if you are out of the office, avoid the coffee shops. If you really need to get work done, head to a private area or the library to keep your focus.
To help with distraction, also try to schedule your daily tasks early. Set aside time for checking in with coworkers and for time to focus on tasks as well. The more you know what your day will entail, the less stress you will have for the tasks left to be completed.
Use tools like Outlook or Asana to list tasks left to do and when they need to be done by so you can plan ahead to schedule enough time to get them done.
While you are scheduling, don’t over-commit. While you can schedule your day, there will always be things that come up you didn’t plan on, so make sure you leave time on your calendar to handle critical items.
Don’t commit to too many meetings, in fact try to cut them out altogether as they are usually unnecessary and a general waste of time. If something needs to be discussed, meet with only the required people and keep in on task.
14. Take Breaks
Throughout your day, you might have every minute scheduled, but you need to make sure you have some break time scheduled. You will find your productivity increasing if you can take a few 15 minute breaks throughout the day to refocus your energy.
On these breaks, don’t just sit around looking on the internet, get out and take a walk, breath in some fresh air and get your body moving. This will help your blood circulate and you will feel refreshed for the rest of the day.
13. Know your priorities
When you are setting your commitments and schedule, make sure you understand what is really a priority. That extra meeting to discuss reports may not be as important as putting in that extra time of quality control.
You shouldn’t lose sight of the big picture and you need to understand what is truly important to the task and what is just “filler” time.
12. Take it one step at a time
You can’t just change everything at one time and expect to realize the benefits right away. Don’t change everything at once and get overwhelmed. Instead, try making one small change a week until you are ready to add something else.
In not time you will find that everything you are changing adds up to the overall improvement of your work life and you are able to manage it better.
11. Take advantage of your commute
If you are like most people, you have to commute to work. Rather than using that as a waste of you day, take advantage of it.
If you sit in your car in traffic everyday, grab some good podcasts or audiobooks and learn something throughout your commute. Use your time to find inspiration or learn a new skill that you can use at work.
If you commute on the train or bus, bring some documents with you and try to get some work done at this time. It will help you catch up and even spend less time in the office.
10. Look up from the monitor
If you work on a computer all day, the best thing you can do for your mindset, as well as your eyes, is to just look up every once in a while. Glancing up every so often allows your mind to reset every once in a while, but more importantly allows your eyes to rest.
Staring at a computer all day will hurt your eyes and can cause headaches which will reduce your productivity throughout the day.
9. Take a nap
Seriously. If you are at a place that would allow this, take a few minutes to take a nap. After a big lunch you will feel tired, so what better way to recharge than to take a nap.
Rather than forcing yourself to push through the tire, or grabbing another cup of coffee, that 15 minute nap will give you more energy and keep your mind focused.
8. Don’t check your email
Email can be a huge distraction and is often times unnecessary. Many people use it as if it were a form of instant communication, but it is not really meant to be that way. The great thing about email is shouldn’t be expected to answer right away.
This give you the opportunity to schedule times when you will open and answer your emails, leaving you free of that distraction throughout the day. Soon enough, coworkers will realize that if it is an emergency, they need to pick up the phone.
7. Track everything to learn
The best way to learn what works best for you is to keep track of it. Keep a log of everything you do throughout the day and analyze it later. Look for time wasters or stressors and try to eliminate them.
The only way to identify these things is to track everything and periodically review it to ensure you are being efficient and keeping a stress free day.
6. Find inspiration
Find and remember the answer to why you are working. Find your inspiration that will get you up every morning to drive through the commute and spend 8 to 9 hours a day at work.
Maybe you are doing a greater good for other people, or you are providing for your family. Whatever your reason is, keep it as your inspiration throughout the day.
5. Snacks (healthy)
It is important to keep a healthy routine at work and this includes snacking. As you go through the day, you might get tired or even hungry and your productivity goes down. Snacking will help give you energy and keep your mind focused.
Make sure it is a healthy snack though, as eating something unhealthy will only make it worse for you throughout the day by making you even more tired later.
4. Take your family to work
If your inspiration is your family, see if you can take them to work every once in a while. Whether your family is your children or even your dogs, by connecting them to work, you get rid of the separation of the two and it will help keep you inspired to work harder.
This helps the family understand why you are gone all day as well, and can even be a fun part of their day.
Be conscious about your breathing throughout the day. During stressful times, you might find yourself holding your breath for a few seconds. It is important to take some deep breaths every once in a while to relieve some tension and get more oxygen to your brain.
The more you breathe, the better you will function and your productivity will increase.
While you don’t want to have unnecessary meetings, it is still important to check in with your coworkers every once in a while. I don’t mean just idle gossip or time-wasting discussions, but just checking in and being human.
You spend more time with your coworkers than your family, so you should get to know them. Chances are, the more you get to know them, the more you will like them, making work a better place overall.
Take everything you have applied here and just repeat it. The hardest part of consciously having a better work day is not making the changes, but keeping the habit.
Always remember what you want and repeat it every day, all day. The repetition will soon become second nature and you will soon find you are living the perfect work day everyday.