It may seem like a simple, even inconsequential question, but how you get ready for the day sets the stage for everything to come. While advance preparation isn’t all that difficult, it does require a mindset and diligence to ensure you do it every day.
Here are some of the best ways to ready yourself to greet the day – any day, not just work, school or special occasions.
- Get a Good Night’s Sleep – This is absolutely paramount. You can’t run on empty, and going without sufficient sleep is like trying to coax extra miles out of a gas tank that’s already on fumes. Whether you believe you can get away with 4-5 hours of sleep or less, you’re only kidding yourself. Aim for a good 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night and you’ll awaken well-rested and ready to take on the world.
- Put Some Nutritious Food in Your Body – Just as adequate sleep is a prerequisite for tackling the day ahead, so is making sure you eat nutritious food before you set out. This doesn’t need to be a full breakfast, but simply downing coffee won’t cut it. Aim for some protein, fruit and whole-grain product. That will keep your energy up and tide you over until lunch. While you’re at it, make sure you hydrate throughout the day. Water is the body’s best friend, so drink plenty of it.
- Remember to Take Your Supplements – While eating well-balanced meals is a good practice, the fact is that you may need to take additional vitamins and minerals or other supplements to get what your body needs. Women, in particular, need folate and everyone can use Vitamin B-12. Whatever your supplement regimen, be sure you’re consistent with it.
- Plan Ahead – If you know you’ve got a big presentation to make the next day, put the appropriate amount of time in beforehand. Ditto if you’re about to go on a long trip. Trying to take care of last-minute details, well, at the last minute, will only add stress to your day, increase the likelihood of forgetting something important or cause you to rush through details that shouldn’t be compromised. On the other hand, carefully planning out the day will help you feel more organized and on top of things.
- Schedule Free Time – If what you’re anticipating is a solid day of nonstop tasks or activities, that’s going to wear you down very quickly. Even if the day is routine, consisting of nothing out of the ordinary, it’s important that you bake in or schedule time to do whatever you like. Meditate, go for a walk, read a chapter in a book, tend to your social media or chat with a friend. Everyone needs a little down time, especially when life tends to get in the way.
- Be Sure to Pace Yourself – Even with a plan for the day and schedule free time, the tendency to overdo it is always there. You want to hurry through this or that project or task so you have extra time for yourself. Or the boss is demanding that you take on yet another hot project and you need to leave on time to do something with your family. If you go at a breakneck speed, however, you’re going to falter, make mistakes, not finish on time, or disappoint yourself and others. Factor in the necessity to pace yourself and you’ll get where you need to be in one sane piece.
- Be Willing to Say No – You don’t need to feel obligated to say yes to everything others ask of you. It’s not that you don’t want to help out or that you’re selfish, but have some self-consideration. There are times when you will be able to lend a hand, and say so, but this may not be the time. Be willing and firm enough to say no and mean it.
- Adopt a Hopeful Outlook – You can’t predict what’s going to happen during the course of the day, but you do have the power to choose how you deal with what does. To this end, it’s helpful to adopt a hopeful outlook. Whatever happens, you’ll find a way to deal with it, proactively and effectively. How you view life is how life will treat you. Be positive and optimistic and you’ll be rewarded.
- Surround Yourself with Like-minded People – If you want to really sail through the day, easily overcoming obstacles and vigorously pursuing your goals, another tip is to be with people who share your ideals, interests and other commonalities. There’s nothing like group enthusiasm to encourage creativity, getting things done and finding a sense of purpose and fulfillment.
- Begin (and End) the Day with Gratitude – We each have a limited amount of time on earth. Whatever that turns out to be is an unknown, which can be scary if we let it bother us. What we can do, however, is be grateful for each and every day we have. That’s why it’s important to say thanks and acknowledge our gratitude each morning and again at night. In each instance, gratitude sets us up for the day ahead.
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