Sometimes a person can feel life is getting you down - you don't feel productive, or there's not enough hours in a day to do everything you need. You might not feel motivated to get up in the morning or to go to work anymore, and sometimes one might ask oneself "Is this all there is to life?"
I have decided to write down a few tips that work for me. You should not change who you are, but you can make some small adaptations to you lifestyle which will result in a better you. You can start with mastering one step at a time, and ultimately you should aim to master all of them. These steps should help you to fit more hours in a day. It can be a roadmap to a better life quality, and might help you feel a bit more passionate about life.
- Try and master these steps gradually. I like to say that sudden change is not lasting. Slow change is okay as long as you know the progress is for good.
Step 1 Follow a healthy diet.
This is not a weight loss diet, or any special diet. This should just be a diet with some good nutrition. The better you feed your body, the better it will perform, and you will feel less exhausted. It might even help reduce stress. Eat at least three fruits a day, and at least one meal a day with 2 or more vegetables. Try to cut on refined food, and eat more whole wheat (or whole seed) products with a low glucose index (Low GI). This will help your body absorb the energy more gradually throughout the day, so you won't suffer from a burst of energy followed by sudden fatigue. To reduce your craving for sweets, snack on fruits and raw veggies. Drink at least two liters of water a day to increase hydration. This will also help you think more clearly. If you follow a busy schedule, take some good vitamin supplements.
This should help you feel less exhausted by the time you get home from work at the end of the day, and might be the first step towards better productivity.
Step 2 Wake up early.
Waking up earlier will automatically help you fit more hours into a day. For some people (like me), waking up early is worse than a nightmare. To help you wake up early, go to sleep earlier where possible. Don't eat too much sugar before going to bed, especially chocolates. It also makes waking up the next morning more difficult. Wake up early enough so that you can do something productive in the morning before going to work, and without rushing off to work, but also be careful not to sacrifice on sleep either. You should get between 6 - 8 hours of sleep everyday. Do something like washing the dishes, read a book/newspaper, do some exercise or anything that will make you feel you've done something productive.
Step 3 Do some exercise.
Join a gym, or make use of your gym membership, or just do some basic exercises at home. Try to do an outdoor activity at least once a week, such as hiking, cycling, jogging or any outdoor activity you enjoy.
Step 4 Take one day a week just to rest.
Choose a day to rest. For most people following the Christian faith, this is usually on Sundays. For people following the Jewish faith, it is on Saturday. Whichever day you choose, make it a day of rest. You don't need to be religious or a follower of any particular faith. Use this day to relax with family and friends. Take a nap, and let the chores wait (they won't go away, promise). Force yourself to take some time off.
Step 5 Get organized.
Don't clutter. Try and live a simple life. Keep your desks and chairs or any open space clean and open. This will save you a lot of time and frustration searching for stuff that "you know was there but can't seem to find it now". Keep your spaces open so that it's easy to move around. Where possible, it shouldn't be a chore reaching for places you use to store or organise your stuff. One of the main reasons I clutter my desk is because it's too much of a hassle to reach the places where should store my stuff, so it's just easier to leave it on a desk.
Step 6 If you think of something you should do, do it immediately.
Don't leave stuff for "later", because it might never get done. Pack away your groceries as soon as you get home after shopping. Wash your dishes after each meal, organise your administrative work (bills, invoices, etc) as soon as you receive them. Things can get out of control very quick when you take your eyes off it.
Step 7 Get out.
Go to the movies, eat out, visit 24 hour coffee shops at 2:00 AM. Don't make a habit of it or overdo it, but do something fun every now and then.
Step 8 Rearrange.
Move around your furniture, and rearrange some routines. As they say, "a change is as good as a holiday".
Step 9 On days off from work, get up and get ready for the day.
Take a shower, get dressed, make your bed, etc. Don't lay in bed till lunchtime. Some people can, but others feel kind of depressed when they get up and see half the day gone with everything just laying around. Do whatever works for you, but do something that makes you feel good.
Step 10 When traveling, stop to see something interesting.
If you are a frequent traveller, make some time to stop and see or visit something interesting. These are the moments you'll remember.
Step 11 Laugh and be happy.
This is actually one of the easiest steps, and most overlooked ones. Like the doctor says: "Laughter is the best medicine".
- Don't try to attempt all these steps all at once and think that everything will be okay. The journey towards a better life will take some time and self-discipline. With self-discipline and gradual adjustments you can make lasting changes.