I've always been and probably always be a morning person. I'm one of those really irritating people that choose to get up super early as I tend to function the best before the days properly begun. Within reason of course, though, there are no 4 am starts here and I generally tend to wake up naturally at 6 am. As I work from myself and I'm the one in charge of how productive I'm going to be that day I have a few things set in stone that I always do to make sure my days are as productive as possible. And I thought I'd share them with you today incase you're in need of some productivity inspiration as I know I'm always on the hunt for tips that could help.
In general, my body wakes up naturally at my desired time but I still like to set an alarm to make sure my sleep pattern stays on track. Sometimes when you're all warm and cozy in bed it's all too tempting to hit snooze and get 9 minutes more [I will never understand Apple's snooze period] but whenever I do whenever I actually wake up I always regret it because I feel way worse than I would have done if I just got up when my alarm went off the first time. Getting out of the snooze habit is hard but something I've found helps me feel way more awake and ready to get on with my day. Here's a scientific study on why snooze is so terrible for your sleep pattern.
PLANNING THE NIGHT BEFORE
Technically this isn't something that I do in the morning but it is always something I do the night before, no matter how tired I am and how much I want to crawl into bed I will always write my to-do list. I'm big into planning, this isn't something new but there is just something about writing my to-do list the night before and waking up and already knowing what I need to do that helps my day so much. I don't have to faff around in the morning trying to work out what I need to do and I can just get stuck straight into work. And it's not just with my to-do list either I will do this with things like preparing what I'm going to wear, what I'm going to eat and if I need to run any errands. It not only helps me feel more organised but it also helps me manage my time a lot better too.
HAVING TIME TO WAKE UP
Having time to actually feel awake in the morning is something I've really treasured over the years. Even when I didn't work for myself at various jobs and at university I would always get up earlier than I needed to so I had time to do the things that help me feel awake in the morning. So things, like making breakfast and eating it in my own time, doing my skincare routine and getting dressed, are all things I like to do in the window of time I have before I start my workday. I know that having that time isn't an option for so many people but if it is then embrace it as there is nothing worse than starting the morning off in a huge rush.
DOING THE DIFFICULT TASKS FIRST
When you have something written on your to-do list that isn't something that fills you with excitement it's all too easy to avoid it. Getting it out of the way first might not seem like the most thrilling way to start your day but getting those dreaded tasks out the way first is always a relief. And then you can get on with the things that you do enjoy and this is something that doesn't just have to be saved for work it can be transferred to all things especially housework etc.
Obviously, it's safe to say that I don't work in the nude, although I probably could if I so desired but I'd be running a risky game taking pictures that's for sure. And if you don't work for yourself at home then you have to get dressed obviously, but if you do then you will know the temptation to stay in your dressing gown all day. And if that's something you want to do then you can because ultimately it doesn't affect your work day at all and you don't have to wear a suit to be productive. But something that I've found over the years that getting dressed, even if it just into some leggings and a cosy jumper having some sort of uniform can make all the difference to your productivity levels. Getting into those clothes signifies the start of my workday and then when I can get changed into my favourite sweatpants then that tells my brain it's the end of my work day and it makes switching off so much easier.
I typically don't start my work day properly till around 10/11 even though I'll always do a few e-mails and admin after I've had my breakfast at around 7 am. But something I'm really into at the moment is exercising in the morning, the time I either go out for a walk with my dog or go to the gym changes all the time but I've found that if I move around in the morning it makes a huge difference to my day. And this isn't something that's for everyone and I'm never going to be a 5.30 gym goer that's for sure but at around 8 getting out for an hour really changes the outcome of my day. I feel more switched on, better at making decisions and my brain feels so much more focused than if I just sit at my desk for hours in a morning. I also find if I get out in the morning then I won't put it off which is all too tempting to do when it gets to mid afternoon. Exercise or just getting out is something that's made a huge difference to my mental health over the past year especially and it's something I really treasure.
What are your favourite AM habits for a productive day?