Discipline is the key to freedom. Without discipline, you live a disorganized and frantic life full of unnecessary stresses and pent-up anger. It may be hard to evaluate your own life so try taking a look at someone else’s. Think about a person you know who is always complaining about not having enough time in the day. Those who claim to not have enough time in the day do not live in a parallel universe consisting of only 12 hour days, they are just horrible at time management. We all share the same 24 hours each day and those who use their time wisely find success much easier.
Getting a great start to your day leads to better productivity and time management. This is why we’ve stressed the importance of developing and following a well thought out morning routine. As each day has a beginning and end, so should the cycle of our routines. If you begin your day great, you should too end your day great too. Implementing these routines into your life are what help you to better manage your time so you can begin to experience absolute freedom.
A standard model does not exist for these night time routines so get creative and figure out what works best for you. Below are tips to get you started:
Write in a Notebook:
Not sure what to write about? Doesn’t matter, grab yourself a nice Moleskine notebook, pick up the pen and begin writing. Let your mind wander and free write about your day, random thoughts, or ideas you need to put down on paper. This way, you will begin writing and throughout your process of free writing, you’ll be able to discover what works best for you. The key is consistency, your future self will later thank you for it.
Break Away from Technology:
I knew I had a problem. As I laid in bed one night crafting a snarky tweet about insomnia, I immediately realized for the last hour I’ve done nothing else but stare at my phone. Let he who is without late night #insomnia tweets cast the first stone. Trust me when I say that I am both a victim and survivor. Now that I keep my phone far away from my bed at night, the effects on my overall mental state have resonated.
Read a Book:
Again, put down the digital technology and pick up a book. Drop the Nook or tablet too. Science proves reading helps to reduce stress and combat insomnia along with many more mentally beneficial effects. Reading a book before bed will lead to a better night sleep and at least for me, very vivid dreams.
Review & Assess:
This can be mental or doubled up to be used as an objective for writing in your notebook. Take the time before bed to reflect on your day, both the positives and the negatives. What did you do right, what could you have done better? What did you accomplish, what did you not accomplish and why did you not accomplish? How can you accomplish it tomorrow to not let that task drag on another day? Focus on identifying your weak points with the plan to make them stronger.
Prepare for Tomorrow:
Most importantly, make sure you are prepared for the day ahead. If you’re prepared tomorrow the night before, think about the time hack you’ve already created for yourself. Instead of wasting morning time scrambling to make breakfast, looking for shirts, socks and ties, you can now use that extra time to better enhance your morning routine helping to achieve a better flow. Once you’re ready for tomorrow, then it’s time to focus on tomorrow’s schedule and prioritize tomorrow’s tasks. Planning a to-do list at night will significantly help you to be more productive as you are no longer pressured by the passing minutes of the day.
Everyone is different and some believe their current unmanaged system works. All I can say is personally, being open to new ideas has significantly changed my life and how I work. I accomplish more work in less time and unnecessary stress no longer bogs down my day. If you’ve had success from a similar routine, let us know!