Doing one of my favorite things: morning planning and happy time. More on this below.
We're comparing ourselves to others and even comparing past and current successes. I try not to let the pressure get to me but before my recent day-cation I was frustrated to near-tears from working so much and making so little for it during my current transition to a new blog/brand name. (I'm making less than minimum wage if I were to really sit and count the hours? Which I won't, too demoralizing.) It's hard for everyone right now. Yet when I'm in my work-groove writing, making, and creating everything's natural. Zen. And I know I'm making the right choices and sacrifices.
Here are some exercises I vow to follow to become more productive and more secure. I hope you'll join me and leave any suggestions you might have in the comments. Let's help each other get better! I hope to share progress on these steps on the blog.
Vow 1) Make a Killer Schedule and Stick to it: Frustration and exhaustion can be cured by making and sticking to a schedule. Schedule ALL the things. I even plan to schedule time to cook and freeze healthy meals ahead of time with friends/family to maximize productivity.
Vow 2) Work Harder in Less Time to Get Shit Did: Let's vow to set aside dedicated time and cracking away to get things done ASAP. Don't get distracted by social media, your house mess, nada! Set a timer and really knock out tasks fast and efficiently.
Vow 3) Set Aside Happy Time for Yourself: Now that you have more time because you're better scheduled and work was done in less time... get to crafting, traveling, relaxing with a book or video games, and spending more time with friends/family. You must recharge to work better later.
Vow 4) Sleep!: I ironically give you this advice as I'm typing this article at 11:59 AM and intend to pack some orders and do a little organizing before bed...to arise early and get some work done at my part time vegan kitchen job. Don't be like me, sleep so you're healthy and productive. I'm taking melatonin (natural hormone) to help get back into a healthy sleep cycle.
Vow 5) Establish an Un-Rushed "Morning Happy Time": When you're sleeping more you can arise early! Leaving for work in a rush starts your day in a frenzy. Get up earlier and spend some time with loved ones over tea or sit with our journal and take notes. I miss this part of the day (my fav, been so busy I've skipped it) and plan to re-establish it. When I worked an office job I'd wake up extra early to avoid traffic, sit at my desk with my tea, check e-mails and get situated. It makes the rest of your day smoother to start relaxed instead of frazzled. (Try listening to your favorite music while you're at it. Setting my Pandora to the Prince and Michael Jackson stations does the trick for me!)
I like a combo of inspiring photo-books and self-improvement reading. Can't wait to make time for reading stacks of books.
Vow 6) Start Detailed Journaling/Planners: I try to keep a journal for my business/work-out/healthy eating progress, planning and ideas. Writing it all out is meditative, I love experimenting with different types of journaling. Do you have any to recommend? I love the "Morning Pages" recommendation in The Artist's Way, you simply purge all your thoughts good or bad into your journal in the morning to clear your mind.
Vow 7) Treat Yo Self: I have big time buyer's remorse, but working hard non-stop without stopping to treat yourself is extremely draining. Stop to do something you love, buy yourself something nice (even if it's cheap or thrifted) every now and then. It raises morale.
I'm always making new tableaus. It's not perfect yet but the journey is relaxing and keeping things fresh/attractive keeps me working happy.
Vow 8) Get Organized and Keep Home Clean/Attractive: Not knowing where everything is kills time and work flow. Know where all your supplies are, establish rules to keep your home/work-space clutter free, and surround yourself with objects that inspire.
Vow 9) Daily Improvement: Stay up-to-date in your field and read books on self-improvement. Take notes and apply them. I'm working on Wake up and Live and The 7 Habits of Productive People.
Vow 10) Count Your Blessings Daily, Keep Positive: You're reading this now so you've yet to shed your mortal coil. You're alive; rejoice! Stay positive instead of self-critiquing yourself into an inertia slump. Maybe write what you're grateful for in your journal daily.
Bonus: Always gravitate toward doing exactly what you want to do. (Exercise to find what that is here). You may not be able to do so immediately, but life's too short not to work hard toward it.
Take these vows with me and exhaustion will be no more. We'll the energy and positively we need to conquer work and tasks and make that money! Security, here we come.
Planning on taking these steps with me? Do it! For real. Let's get shit done so we can relax and stop stressing. I would love any tips you have, do share in the comments. It's been crazy lately, but I'm determined to make it better.