11 simple actions to set up your day for success
Positive thoughts with positive actions will never create negative results. Yes! Take a moment to read that again: Positive thoughts with positive actions will never create negative results.
Making positive thoughts and actions a part of your daily routine will lead you to successful, happy days —and those happy days will become happy weeks, months, years, and ultimately, your happy life.
And those daily actions don’t have to be complicated, costly or challenging. Focus on just one day at a time, one step at a time.
Need some ideas? I have found that these 11 things have radically changed my life:
1. Start your day with five minutes of meditation. When facing a very busy (and noisy!) day, a quick meditation gives you a dedicated time for silence. Cultivating meditation as a daily practice can create powerful shifts in your life. (Trust me, I could go on and on about meditation but that will have to be another post!)
2. Read a daily affirmation or devotion. Wise words foster a positive mindset. A daily affirmation works in two ways: to educate and to inspire you. Two of my favorites are Gabrielle Berstein’s Spirit Junkie App for your phone or Marianne Williamson’s book A Year of Miracles.
3. Plan your meals for the day. Happiness is not just a product of your mental state but it also your physical well-being. Taking some time to plan your meals for the day ensures you fuel your body with the nutrients and vitamins it needs, even if you’re on the go. Eating regular, balanced and delicious meals is one of the most important things you can do for your health, both physical and mental.
4. Write down five things you are grateful for. A gratitude journal is not a new concept, but its impact on your outlook is incredible. Write in your journal by splitting the page: one side says “Thank you” and the other “You are welcome” (For example, “Thank you for my family”—“You are welcome”). This format creates an inner dialogue and cultivates a deep gratitude that you can carry with you throughout the day.
5. Go on a morning run or walk, or practice yoga. Physical activity clears your mind to start the day with a clean slate. You generate tons of energy, as well as a sense of accomplishment (your workout is already done!) before you conquer the workday. Bonus points if you get moving outdoors!
6. Eat a filling breakfast full of delicious fruits, grains and proteins. We hear it time and time again, but that’s because it’s true: breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Breakfast is the base to how we start our day. Put your health first.
7. Take a walk during your lunch break. Fresh air and a change of scenery will do wonders for your state of mind. A short walk gives you time to reboot and recharge, so you’re ready to face whatever comes your way. And motion creates emotion, which means that a walk can help you work through how you’re really, truly feeling.
8. Hone your focus management—not time management. Throughout the day, we can be so distracted by our phones, computers, texts, emails and social media. With this constant buzz, there is no such thing as time management anymore. Instead, think about “focus management.” Block off a period of time to focus on one task with no distractions. Then take a five-minute break to check email, social media and texts or simply relax. Move to the next item of focus and continue this cycle throughout the day. You will be most efficient—and amazed at how much you accomplish.
9. Practice visualization for five minutes each day. Like your daily meditation time, set aside five minutes to envision positive moments or outcomes. Bring to mind feelings of happiness, people congratulating you, specific smells and sounds. Move beyond strict visualization by assigning emotion to these thoughts. Resist thinking of “how” something will come to be and focus on the experience or achievement itself.
10. Read or journal before bed to unwind. Make the hour before you go to sleep a sacred time. Turn off all electronics and TVs and engage in a quiet, reflective activity, like reading or journaling. This peaceful time allows you to slow down at the end of a busy day and prepare your mind and body for a restful night’s sleep.
11. End with three wins from the day. Reflecting on three positive points from the day is a wonderful way to recognize how great your day was! In the hustle and bustle, we often forget those amazing moments, overlook their significance and fail to appreciate them. Think about your successes and accomplishments of the day, uplifting interactions and instances of beauty, awe and delight. Of course, you can have more than three! It’s also fun to do this exercise with your family or friends.
I would love to hear your ideas too. What do you do in your daily routine to create successful, happy days?