As we have moved firmly in to the year 2015, I wanted to share one simple life-change that has completely revolutionized how I get things done.
I wake up early.
Now, if you have known me for more than five years, I know what you are thinking...
"You never woke up early!"
"You always stayed up late to get things done!"
Yes, you are right...I used to be that way. In the last three years or so, between a combination of marriage, age and a higher workload; I began to take my mornings seriously. I could no longer wait until 10AM to get creative (or 10PM for that matter), because I simply could not get everything finished. By waking up early, starting my day with a simple routine, and getting to work; my life has been less stressful and much more productive.
Go to Bed Early
Once again, this used to be the thing I did least. I bet you fellow creatives know exactly what I'm talking about.
"But I just can't get creative until it's late! That's when the juices flow."
Well, since I made this life-change, I can't say that I agree. Looking back, I believe a lot of those "creative moments" were simply me being tired and settling for what I had done.We also get more rest by going to bed early, and we need our rest. Sure, we all have to work late from time to time, but by forming habits of "early to bed, early to rise;" we start our mornings off fresh and ready to produce.
Wake Up Earlier Than You Have Too
If I wanted too, I could sleep until 7:45am and still make it to work on time. What time do I aim at getting out of bed? 5:30am. Yep, two hours before I have too. Why do I do this? In a simple thought: to wake my mind up. By waking up hours before I get to work, my mind is fully alert and active by the time I fire up my computer. No needing the work coffee, or cooler talk...just getting to work.
Have a Morning Routine
I am a person of routine. I like order to my day. I like order to the way I eat my food. I like routine. Having a morning routine does a couple of things. It helps to get your mind moving long before you begin working. It also gets your body acclimated to the early mornings.
Although I don't always accomplish these things, my morning routine goes as follows:
- Work Out
- Pour Coffee
- Read Devotional/Bible Reading
- Plan my Day using a Day Sheet
- Eat Breakfast with my wife
- See her off to her job
- Read a chapter of my current book
- Get ready
- Head to work
Every morning, it is my goal to get all of this done before I leave for work. This routine has allowed me to stay on top of what I need to do every day. By planning my day, I know exactly what to do when I get to work. I've had a healthy breakfast, stimulated my body and mind, spent time with my wife and had devotion. This routine has made a world of difference for me.
Make Yourself Work
As I made this transition, I found it to be just that, a transition. At first, I had trouble reading and comprehending in the morning. I still didn't feel motivated to work on a project. But over time, it became easier to focus. I found it more stimulating to work on a project in the morning than the evening or at night.
It took some time, but ultimately, getting up early has changed the way I work for the better! What are some life-changes you have made that have allowed you to be more creative or productive?
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