Whether you’re an athlete, business professional, military service member, student, or something else completely, it is up to you to create your own success. Here are a 5 ways that help me keep track of my progress and ensure that I am creating winning situations one after another! Let's dive in!
1. Refine Your Morning Routine
There’s nothing better than waking up and starting the day off with a solid morning. For most this includes a good quick workout and a well-balanced breakfast. After sleeping a sound 7-8 hours, I lace up my shoes and go for a run. Not only does a morning workout energize you for your day, it kicks your metabolism into gear, too.
If you are one who grabs a protein bar and skips eating a quality breakfast, you might want to change up your morning routine. According to the Cleveland Clinic (2017), it was shown that eating a well-balanced breakfast increases energy throughout the day and decreases risk of heart disease; this is under the assumption that your breakfast has lean protein [chicken, turkey, low-fat dairy], soluble fiber [oats, beans, fruits, and vegetables], and healthy fats [avocado, olive oil, other nut-based oils]).
By adding a workout of some sort to your morning routine and eating a well-balanced breakfast, you are going to set yourself up for success right from the beginning! Evaluate your mornings and challenge yourself to develop a routine that works for you!
2. Make A Daily Checklist
For most of us, there are a million things that we should be doing, but where do we start? Ever since I was in college starting back in 2013, creating a small list of 5-10 items that needed to get done has helped streamline my work for the day. These items are written down on a piece of paper so that it you are able to visualize and organize your actions. I highly suggest writing down a few tasks that will support your short-term goals and some that will support your long-term goals. You can write them down in order of importance if you’d like, but you don’t have to.
An example of a daily checklist could look something like this:
-Take out the trash
-Meal prep 3 days of meals
-Read 20 pages of my textbook/book/homework
-Review/update client plan
-Adjust training plan
-lay out clothes for tomorrow
-pack lunch for tomorrow
See how simple that is? It doesn’t have to be daunting, so give it a try!
3. Maintain Laser Focus
There's music blaring in the background, Netflix playing your favorite show, twenty different tabs open on your web browser, you’re texting or looking at Instagram photos, and you’re eating a snack…all while trying to get your checklist done. Creating a checklist as previously mentioned is only effective if you maintain laser focus on the task at hand. Would you rather spend 1 hour doing 10 things, or 10 minutes? I think we’d all agree that our time is precious, so let’s talk how to dial our focus in!
Reducing the number of distractions and allocating time to complete a specific task will allow you to streamline your work and be more efficient. Turn off the TV, put your phone in another room on your charger, minimize or close those other tabs, turn down the music, and start looking at the thing you need to do. Let’s say you need to finish writing an article for school or work: open up Word, set a time limit, and just start working. Stay focused on the task at hand by minimizing outside distractions.
4. Disconnect and Be Present
If you’re like me and enjoy watching YouTube videos or scrolling through Instagram/Facebook catching up on the lives of your friends and family, that's fine (shoot me a follow and I’ll show some love back @toddphysique). Just keep in mind that there is an entire world around you happening in real time that you are missing out while looking down. It is important to disconnect from your phone, the internet, and electronics all together, and truly be present with all 5 senses to what's happening now!
Fortunately, this is easy for me: my wife and I have an adorable pup named Sami and we take her for a walk and we play at the dog park. It’s great exercise, it’s great family time, and we are present with each other!
I challenge you to put your phone down for short periods throughout the day and see how much you can accomplish when you’re not staring at a screen (which isn’t good for your eyes anyways!). Disconnect and be present!
5. Prepare for Tomorrow
You’ve probably heard that failing to prepare is preparing to fail, or something along those lines, right? I would agree that this statement is somewhat true! Every evening after I’ve eaten a nice dinner and I’m relaxing with the family; I take 10 minutes to think through what I need to get done during the next day. I think about it and if something important comes to mind I either write it down as part of tomorrow’s checklist or take care of it before bed. Doing this has saved me a lot of time and stress the next day, try it out!
Creating success takes work, but it doesn’t have to be long, hard work. The 5 steps of refining your morning routine, making a daily checklist, maintaining laser focus, disconnecting and being present, and preparing for the next day, have all created success for my personal and professional life. I hope you use these steps and develop your own winning situations!