This video resurfaced on my Facebook feed this week. The topic of the video is 10 life lessons from basic SEAL training, delivered by Admiral William H. McRaven. What I loved about this video is life lesson #1 . . . . start your day off by making your bed.
Will making your bed really set your entire day off on the right foot? Why will making your bed set your day off on the right foot? It’s a success. It’s a completion. It’s motivating. It feels good to start the day with things in order.
When I’m working with my organizing and coaching clients, I encourage them to start the day with something that will make them feel good, accomplished, and motivated to take on the world . . . or possibly just cleaning the house.
What else do I encourage to help my clients start their day off with energy?
- Start the night before. Planning the next day the night before can be very helpful in getting the morning started right. Look at your calendar and see what’s ahead of you. Put out the clothes you plan to wear. Make a list of the three most important items on your “to do” list. If possible, pack lunches. Whatever you can do the night before will help keep your busy morning on track.
- Take some time to meditate. Before I started meditating, I had this vision of sitting on the floor, cross-legged, in total silence, with incense burning in the background. Well, that just sounded like too much work for me. So I started small, and have stayed there. I meditate four to five times a week for 10 minutes. I’m not a neuroscientist so I can’t explain how it works, but meditating physically changes the brain.
- Get dressed and put on your shoes. Yup, just the simple act of getting dressed and putting on your shoes tells your brain it’s ready to take on the day. Personally, there’s a big difference in my ability to motivate myself if I’m in “go out in public” clothes vs “hangin’ out and having another cup of coffee” clothes. How about you?
- Get a little exercise. I know we all don’t have time to hit the gym for an hour first thing in the morning, but most of us have time for a brisk 15-20 minute walk. (Well, those of you that have little ones at home probably don’t, but you get lots of exercise chasing after them, right?) If you can’t fit in 15-20 minutes, take 30 seconds to do some stretching. Even that small amount of time is enough to wake your body up.
- Eat something. Again, most of us choose not to get up early enough to have a sit-down breakfast. But that doesn’t mean we can’t eat something healthy, even if we are on-the-go. My morning staple is oatmeal cupcakes. The recipe I use makes 24 cupcakes and only takes about 40 minutes (the recipe says 25, but I’m clearly not that fast). I freeze them and 1:00 in the microwave later, I’m out the door!
What do you do to ensure your mornings start off on the right foot?
National Association of Professional Organizers, Seattle Chapter Vice President
Institute for Challenging Disorganization:
Level I Certificates earned in Chronic Disorganization; ADD; Client Administration; Time Management; Mental Health; and Hoarding.
Level II Specialist Certificates earned in Chronic Disorganization and ADHD.
Coach Approach for Organizers
Graduate of the Comprehensive Training Program: Coaching Essentials; Strengths-Based Coaching; Brain-Based Coaching; Life and ADHD Coaching; and Organizer Coach Integration
Graduate-level training: Body-Based Coaching; ADHD Coaching Competencies