We’ve all heard the adage, “Everyone has the same 24 hours in a day.”
This cliché is often the topic of discussion in how successful people become so, and the not-so-successful people stay not-so-successful.
Terri Savelle Foy shared the following quote at a conference I attended*, attributed to Mike Murdock: “The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine.”
*This tip is a freebie-don’t ever stop learning. The not-so-successful often stop learning as soon as they finish school.
I would dare to say that the most successful of people have developed tremendous habits that dominate their day. This isn’t to say you have to be a rigid individual, but many people find a great amount of freedom in developing and sticking to a routine schedule.
Schedule your shower, your breakfast, your commute, your projects, your email, your exercise, your recreation. Schedule your “do nothing/do whatever” time. Schedule homework and study time with the kids.
Schedule it all.
But please understand, this doesn’t just happen overnight and you magically wake up 20 pounds lighter with a full bank account.
Tell me someone who got it perfect the very first try…
This applies to anything and everything. Be bold enough to try, and to fail, and to LEARN, and to try again.
John Maxwell states, “The greatest failure is in times of suffering, when we don’t learn the lesson.”
Failure is a given in life. I’m learning to embrace this more and more…still have a long ways to go, but accepting the fact and moving forward anyways is a tremendously empowering feeling.
Remember the snowball effect: start small, very small, and over time, with work and effort and more work and effort you can build something great and big.
So let’s get back to habits and scheduling.
What’s one thing you need to improve in your life? Seriously, just start with one thing.
Need more vegetables in your diet? Eat one serving at breakfast (yes really, start your day with a victory), and do this for 21 days.
Make that habit stick, then move on to another habit.
As for the scheduling, take 5-10 minutes each evening or at the end of your work day and plan out the next day. I highly doubt it goes exactly as planned, but it gives your direction. That’s huge in being productive. And it WILL get better, and easier. Practice makes permanent. Keep practicing.
Do this for 21 days and see what happens. I dare you to.
I would bet you get more work done in less time.
You’ll prioritize the important stuff and spend less time mulling over or stressing over the insignificant.
Prepare with purpose.
My real life example includes the following: write out my schedule for the next day – set out the clothes I’m going to wear (to work, to exercise, to sleep-all of it), fill a water bottle and put in the fridge so it’s ready as soon as I wake up, know exactly what I need to do in the morning before leaving the house, read, go to bed.
Boring, I know.
But it works.
Consistency is always king.
In exercise, you have to be consistent.
In eating healthy, you have to be consistent.
In work, you have to be consistent.
In meaningful relationships, the same applies.
Some things you have to do every day. Eating seven apples on Saturday night instead of one a day just isn’t going to get the job done. -Jim Rohn
Don’t major in minor things. Focus on the big rocks in your life. These are what will transform you into a successful person (this term is absolutely relative-find what it means to you).
I quote a lot of people, but Jim Rohn may be my all-time favorite. He defines success as “a few small disciplines, repeated every day.” As for failure? “A few small lapses of judgement, repeated every day.”
How are you making each and every day count?
I’d recommend planning ahead and then getting to work.
Live. Love. Lift.