As I sit here contemplating on the many clients I have empowered through this journey with creating a routine and finding work/ life balance in their lives releasing burnout and moving forward in their success. I found the information below to be the most beneficial.
Creating a routine that works and following it every day is an excellent way of becoming the best version of you. A successful routine gives you a laser like focus from the second you wake in the morning till you go to sleep. Assuring you have time allotted to complete the priorities that are most important to you in your life moving forward outlining a strategy for the future to be the greatest version of yourself.
Personally, I begin my day with 16oz of lemon water as researchers say we are all dehydrated when we wake each morning and allowing our bodies to hydrate with lemon water provides many well-known benefits for me those benefits are helping with digestion, aids in hydration, weight loss, prevents oxidation, provides an antioxidant boost, and acts as a detoxifying agent.
Then I follow a rigorous routine with the foundation outlined below. Establish a successful routine that works best for you. Beginning each day with:
Gratitude is the perfect way to begin each and every day. Studies show the many benefits an individual receiving when practicing gratitude on a daily basis:
“The Science of Gratitude” (2018) indicated in its study the following benefits:
For the individual(s): increased happiness and positive mood to more overall satisfaction with life, less likely to experience burnout, better physical health, better sleep, less fatigue, lower levels of cellular inflammation, greater resiliency to stress, and encourages the development of patience, humility, and wisdom.
For groups and teams(s):
Practicing gratitude increases social behaviors, strengthens relationships, may help employees’ effectiveness, and increase job satisfaction.
In uncertain times having a grateful attitude can be essential for success. In fact, it is precisely under crisis conditions when we have the most to gain by having a grateful perspective on life. Gratitude has the power to energize us in creativity grounding us on our overall perspective in life. It provides the power to heal when you are broken and in times of despair gratitude has the power to open your mind and bring hope.
A most recent study in 2020 showed that regularly practicing gratitude can help ease symptoms of anxiety and depression.
A simple meditation of gratitude can be completed in as little as 3 minutes. I like to use Aura.
We all know the most successful of people all exercise in some way shape or form and many of these leaders are the best in their class at what they put their mind to. When it comes to exercise, the best time of day to get in a workout session is one that you can do consistently. Everyone is different. I for one enjoy first thing in the morning and variety in my workout routine, from running, to my Peloton you can find me @Michele_Lee_, and under #ackprofessional, off on my road bike, walking the road, hiking, yoga, barre, or weight training and at times swimming but those are on the hottest of days. Variety is the name of the game for me when it comes to exercising. The “right” time depends on factors like your preference, lifestyle, and body.
While there is not a one-size-fits-all answer, I prefer the morning workout that provides many different benefits.
If you are on the fence about starting a morning workout routine, consider the following benefits.
Less distractions leading to a successful workout
Morning workouts typically mean you are less prone to distractions. When you first wake up, you have not begun tackling the day. You are also less likely to get phone calls, text messages, and emails or be boggled down with interruptions from the family.
Fewer distractions will lead you to complete a successful workout. Plus, its likely you have more energy to put into the workout first thing in the morning. If you have children try to set your schedule to workout prior to them waking up.
Inspire healthier food choices
An early morning workout could set the tone for a healthier day choosing healthier meals and food choices throughout the day.
A Brigham Young University study suggested that morning exercisers may have less of an appetite throughout the day which can potentially help with weight loss.
Anthony Hackney, a professor in the department of exercise and sport science at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill says working out in the morning when your stomach is empty is the best way to burn stored fat, making it ideal for weight loss. It is mainly due to the body’s hormonal composition in the morning that it is set up to support that goal.
“In the early morning hours, you have a hormonal profile that would predispose you to better metabolism of fat,” Hackney says. People naturally have elevated levels of cortisol and growth hormone in the morning which help with the body’s metabolism so you will “draw more of your energy from your fat reserves,” Hackney says.
Even if you are not a morning person and hate early workouts first thing in the morning can quickly become second nature. Studies in the Journal of Physiology on exercise found that exercising at 7 a.m. can shift your body clock earlier, meaning you’ll feel more alert in the morning and get tired earlier in the evening, potentially priming your body to a schedule for a good night’s rest.
More energy throughout the day
By exercising early, you may feel more energized throughout the day.
A regular morning routine is excellent for boosting energy and reducing fatigue. When you work out, oxygen and nutrients travel to your heart and lungs improving your cardiovascular system, endurance, and overall stamina.
Physical activity also improves focus and concentration, regardless of when you do it. But if you have trouble focusing during the day, a morning workout might be just the ticket.
A 2019 study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine found that morning exercise improves attention, visual learning, and decision-making.
Less stress and better mood
Exercise is a natural remedy for stress. During physical activity, your brain makes more endorphins, which in turn provides the “feel-good” neurotransmitters behind a runner’s high. It also doubles as a distraction from anxious thoughts lowering anxiety.
Morning exercise is a great way to start the day on the positive note. You will feel a sense of accomplishment, giving you an optimistic outlook going about your day.
Now that you have the positives on beginning an exercise routine for the morning hours. Let’s move forward in creating your routine.
Eat a healthy breakfast
The fuel you consume in the morning has a significant effect on your ongoing performance throughout the day.
Staying away from high-sugar, high-fat breakfasts and instead try oatmeal, smoothies, fruit and yogurt parfait, or even lighter simple celery juice.
Consider good carbs and fiber plus some protein. Those foods will give you energy and satisfy your food cravings while setting the stage for good decisions all day. What is best for you.
Take a cold plunge or shower
This one may seem a little extreme, but many people swear by taking cold showers each morning. I for one never enjoyed the cold until I learned of this method. Now I will sit in the snow barefoot and all and do yoga in the yard on snowy days. It is similar to athletes who take cold plunges. Providing many health benefits. Consider the Win Hof method of breathing, cold therapy and commitment.
Benefits of this method are reducing stress levels, greater cold tolerance, faster recovery, enhanced creativity, stronger immune system, increased energy, better sleep, heightened focus and determination, improved sports performance, and increased will power.
Tony Robbins plunges in every morning. He’s convinced that it is essential for maximum productivity.
You can begin with just 2 minutes each day with Win Hofs How to Use Cold Showers to Take Control of Your Mind and Body.
Commit to specified working hours and life balance
Whether you are working remotely or in the office. Set your working hours. This can be challenging for many people especially those that have a family and small child but is essential for success whether you are an executive, or an administrative employee assuring you are not burning yourself out at both ends causing burnout and providing work/ life balance. Commit to a set schedule of working hours and then prioritize your work schedule accordingly.
Commit to the schedule for working hours assures you stick with that schedule. Take breaks during work. Whether you are working remotely or working from an office, taking regular breaks will help to improve your concentration, boost your mental health and energy. Don’t suffer from digital eyestrain from staring at our digital devices and computer screams most of the day. Avoid it by making sure you are hydrating with water and your eyes are blinking often. Try moving your eyes away from the computer screen and focusing on something at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes.
Communicate if you are a leader your policy on those that reach out to your after working hours and provide your guidelines on what constitutes an emergency, and you can be interrupted for after those hours and what can be emailed and responded to before your next scheduled meeting and those items that require an outcome prior to when you meet to those items that can realistically wait for the 1:1 meeting. Provide your expectations to each of your direct reports. Determine what requires an immediate response. Organize your space at the end of each working day and disconnect.
Take an opportunity to review your calendar for the next day and prioritize on a weekly basis whether professionally & personally; outline what goals you would like to have completed that week providing time in your schedule for you to do so.
Get work/ life balance even when working home remotely.
Set time each day for what is most important to you
Make sure your family time and the items that are most important to you are on your schedule. Such things as the children’s sports, recitals, teacher conferences, make time to be there. Life is short, time is fast.
Inspire yourself with what is most important to you in this life being sure those items are prioritized accordingly and the others that are less important to you are set aside for times you have the “extra” time if that time so exists to do so.
Set the goals you want to accomplish this week, this month, 6 months from now, one year from now, however long you need to assure you have the time necessary to accomplish your goals that you have set out to achieve.
Decide on an evening ritual
In the evening, make it a priority to let go of the workday and focus on yourself and your family. Unless there is an important matter requiring your immediate attention that you have control over. Disconnect your mind away from the stress and responsibilities of the day and focus on you and the family (if this is relevant to your situation) everyone is different.
Evenings are best for decompressing and left for enjoying time with those you love and planning and preparing for the next day. Use this time to complete what is needed for you and your situation.
Examples for an evening schedule:
If your day is not going as planned, consider how you can make tomorrow even better than today.
Read a book, join a book club.
Chat with family and friends.
Plan meals for the next day (if you don’t have your own personal chef).
Meditate on gratitude and happiness. Mindfulness
Self-care and beauty routines.
Reflect on your daily achievements and successes.
Review the goals you have established for yourself and where you are today where you want to be tomorrow, next month, a year from now. 5 years then 10 years.
Consider the values you have for yourself and those you want to instill in your life and incorporate into your schedule.
Coming up with a set of your values can be challenging but is extremely important to you and the life you want to lead successfully. Your values are the things that are important to you in life, so generally it would be natural to say that it would be easy to implement them and live by them. Yet, many of us do not always live by our values consistently. For example, do you or someone you know been in any of these situations?
A friend or colleague said or did something that you strongly disagreed with, but you did not confront the belief and speak up and later regretted not doing so?
You set goals for yourself or your team but failed to meet them?
Your life or career has not worked out to what you expected?
What you want to achieve in life does not seem “practical” and is out of reach for you and conflicts with what you are really accomplishing in your life?
You are so busy pleasing everyone else that you truly do not know what your values are in life or in your business?
Still unsure? Define the values that are most important to you, for you to live life with your integrity consider these questions:
What is most important to you in life?
If you had a career and did not have to worry about money, what would that career be?
When you read new stories or hear news what type of stories inspire you?
What do you want to change about the world and about yourself?
Make decisions according to your values and beliefs and implement a routine that works for you, your life, your career, and your integrity.
Be the best version of you professionally & personally. Outlining the path to your success.
Looking for more ways to live life within your integrity implementing an efficient strategy for you to obtain your goals in life and leadership most effectively having work/ life balance and future success? Building a culture of integrity in your life and leadership? Visit Ack Professional. The premier Leadership and Life strategist designing the life you envision professionally & personally for your integrity and success.