I’m an early riser. I usually get up somewhere between 5:30 and 7 AM. I love the smell of coffee in the morning, as the coffee machine is always programmed to go on at 5 AM, so all I have to do is pour the coffee in my favorite cup. Although it’s a normal cup, that didn’t cost more than $8, it means the world to me, as it has the logo of our copywriting agency printed on it and a special message: Once you make a decision, the Universe conspires to make it happen.
So I start the day remembering that there are no limits to anything I want to accomplish and that I will fulfill my goals at some point.
Then I open my notebook. It’s filled with thoughts, dreams, plans and sometimes anger. The latter comes when motivation drops and I start losing my way for a bit. But then I realize that motivation isn’t something that lasts forever – this is why we need habits. And the notebook is what keeps me focused on these habits, and on my goals.
#1 I begin the day by either writing down three good things that happened the previous day or three things I am thankful for
We always complain about what we’re NOT happy. We’re always thinking that if we accomplish one goal or another, we’ll live a better life and we’ll be much pleased with it. But once we manage to do that, the feeling of joy only lasts for a few days, as we start turning our attention to even bigger goals. So, as we race towards them we’re never fully content with our lives.
While setting and achieving goals is important, real happiness comes from realizing the things you have NOW, in the present, and from being thankful for them. So I keep a track of them by writing three or more in the notebook each day and sometimes I go back and read them all, just to remember the good things that happened in my life.
#2 I begin the day by reading my goals and bucket list
As I said above, a lot of pages of the notebook are filled with my thoughts, dreams, and plans. I go over them daily and envision the end results, as I learned that there’s no better way to keep myself focused on my goals. It’s one of the best habits to start your morning with because not only that it helps you remember why you are doing what you’re doing, but you’ll also get glimpses of motivation from this.
#3 I begin the day by planning the tasks that I have to complete that day
I have two notebooks in fact. The second is strictly for tasks, and it’s split in two halves:
- weekly tasks
- daily tasks
While I usually plan the next week during weekends, I set daily tasks in the morning, while drinking my coffee. My trick here is to set a bigger number of tasks than I could normally complete, as this will give me a sense of urgency and make me work faster than usual. You won’t get much from the writing below, as it’s in Romanian, but the idea stays the same.
Now, don’t think that I always finish in one day everything that I planned. In case some tasks remain unfinished, I move them to the next day and add a star next to them. It sometimes happens that I don’t do the task the next day either (what can I say – we all procrastinate from time to time), so I add a second star to it. Once the task gets to two stars I can’t delay it anymore so I start that workday with it.
Planning the day ahead is the best way to get organized and stay on track. Before I started doing this, I completed about 50% of the work that I finish now. It’s important that in the first month you add the tasks somewhere you can see them. Once one is complete, cut it from the paper. It’s going to give you a good feeling of accomplishment. This will motivate you to get more done.
Final note: this are not some habits that I invented and you’ve probably read about them on other blogs. But I wanted to share them with you as they had a positive influence over me. I feel that the way you start the day is really important and usually dictates how the rest of it will go.
Secondly, I wrote this article because I wanted to let you know me a little bit better and find out more about who the person behind the screen is.