Habits…Your life today is essentially the sum of your habits. How in shape or out of shape you are? A result of your habits. How happy or unhappy you are? A result of your habits. How successful or unsuccessful you are? A result of your habits.
What are habits? Habits are the small decisions you make and actions you perform every day. According to researchers at Duke University, habits account for about 40% of our behaviors on any given day.
So how can your habits help you cope with COVID-19 and navigate this new normal?
What you repeatedly do (i.e. your habits) ultimately forms the person you are, the things you believe, and the personality that you portray. And for most of us, our new normal is very repetitive since we are home all day everyday. Because of that, our habits are more important now than ever. It is easy to slip into repeating bad habits, but we encourage you to set yourself up for daily success with some of the habits below.
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- Determine your daily to-do’s – Write your top 3 goals for the day. This will require less mental energy and less unexpected stress. Think about the 3 results you want from the day. If you accomplished nothing but those three things all day, you would still feel like you had a successful day.
- Create a daily routine: A simple daily routine can help the days not blend together. Getting up around the same time each day, taking a shower, and getting dressed can start your day with a sense of normalcy. Morning routines can help you start your day calm and in control. There are less distractions in the morning. Less obligations come up and you have a better chance of being able to focus on yourself.
- Set reasonable goals >and stay focused on your goal(s). Set yourself up for success, not failure. Do you really think you are going to clean out the entire garage in one day? Think about how realistic a goal is before diving in head first.
- Start small – remember that bite-size tasks can help accomplish your goals and feeling accomplished can help you stay motivated to tackle bigger goals or projects.
- Get organized – Clean-up your space. Seeing too much stuff makes your brain slower, like a computer with too many apps open.
- Create a dedicated work space – Make sure you have the necessary supplies available, such as a laptop, books, papers, and pens. This helps create more productivity and less ‘floating’. Make sure this dedicated workspace is not in your bedroom. Working in bed or from your bedroom can mess with your sleep, and we all need sleep now more than ever.
- Signal when you’re working. A closed door, a sticky note — anything will do. This can help prevent avoidable distractions throughout the day. If you have kids, have them create a “do not disturb” sign. This will get them involved and also help them know when you are working.
- Take frequent breaks. Try 5 minutes every half hour, or 10 minutes every hour. This will help increase your focus and recharge your energy battery.
- Set a “cut-off time”: You need to decompress! Disconnect from work, the internet, social media or news consumption. We cannot thrive with constant stimulation. Try to set a daily alarm for accountability. One of our team members has given her phone a bedtime of 8pm. She puts her son and her phone to bed at the same time.
- Create Joy – Choosing at least one pleasant project for the day can help create balance and shift your mood and give you something to look forward to. If possible, have a different activity or project for different days of the week like “Facemask Friday” or “Taco Tuesday”. This will help keep variety and also help you keep track of what day it is :).