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8 Ways to Start Your Work Day off Right

Published 27 August 15 11:10 AM

 8 Ways to Start Your Work Day off Right

You don’t have to be a morning person to start your work day off right. All it takes is a little bit of planning and motivation. Instead of saying “Just five more minutes,” envision everything you can achieve if you wake up and arrive at work earlier.

If mornings just aren’t your thing or you need more than just a mocha latte, try one or all of these 8 tips to start your work day off right. No matter what shift you work, this advice can apply to you.

1. Prepare ahead of time – There’s nothing worse than running around in the morning, trying to do a million things at once. That’s why your best bet is to avoid the morning rush by preparing the night before. Make sure your lunch bag, backpack, etc. is packed and ready to go before you even wake up. Instead of mulling over what to wear when you’re already running late, pick your clothes out the night before. Then you won’t be frantically searching through drawers or crawling on the closet floor trying to find the right top or a missing shoe.

If you have kids, ask them the night before if they need lunch money or your signature for a school trip. Even after all this preparation, calamities may still ensue, but at least you’ll have some tasks out of the way.

2. Wake up early – We all have the best intentions the night before, but when morning comes, that snooze button is oh so tempting. But it is very important that you wake up with plenty of time to spare.

If you have difficulty waking up in the morning, you may want to invest in an alarm clock for heavy sleepers. There’s an alarm clock that forces you to do a certain number of bicep curls, while another alarm clock rolls and bounces around the room until you finally catch it. 

The earlier you wake up, the more time you have for relaxing, completing household tasks and planning out the day ahead. So, remember to set your alarm and go to bed early so you’re less likely to press that snooze button. 

3. Squeeze in some exercise time – All too often, we save our exercise time for the end of the day only to have it pushed back to tomorrow. But what if you exercised at the start of the day? It doesn’t have to be anything intense. You could do 15 minutes of yoga, stretch with exercise bands or maybe go for a short run. You could even have someone join you for some accountability. It all depends on what works for you. Whatever activity you end up choosing, it’s sure to have you feeling energized afterwards and, therefore, more productive throughout the workday!

4. Sit down and eat breakfast – What better way to start your day than sitting down for a healthy, balanced breakfast? Instead of eating at your desk, in the car or skipping breakfast altogether, eat a nice breakfast while sitting on your porch or deck. If outside isn’t an option or the weather’s awful, find a favorite spot indoors, whether it’s at the kitchen table or in a reading nook. Take this time to relax and contemplate the day ahead. Or even better, pick up a book you’ve been meaning to read or talk with family or roommates. You’ll be in a great mood before the workday has even started!

5. Make a to-do list – When you have a lot on your plate, smaller tasks tend to slip through the cracks. That’s why it’s always a good idea to create a to-do list first thing in the morning so nothing is overlooked. Jot down the list in a notepad or planner and keep it with you all day long in a tote bag or purse. Make sure to prioritize your tasks, paying special attention to tasks that have closer deadlines or greater importance. This checklist will allow you to keep track of all you’ve accomplished while also helping you plan out tomorrow’s tasks.

6. Be nice to those around you – You’ve most likely heard the saying, “One kind word can change someone’s entire day,” and it’s 100% true. Even if you wake up with a killer headache or have a ton of meetings later that day, make an effort to be nice to others. It’s amazing how much a smile or a “Good morning!” can help your mood and the moods of others.

If you live with someone, you could compliment their appearance or bring them a cup of coffee. Not only are they more likely to repay in kind, but it will also have you feeling more positive about the day ahead.

7. Leave for work early – This may sound like a no brainer, as there’s always traffic or bad weather to consider, but it’s very difficult to achieve. Something always comes up in the morning, and before you know it, you’re running late and rushing for the door. It’s as if time is always against you. 

Beat the clock by setting up a morning routine and try to stick to it as best as possible. Think about what tasks take you the longest and figure out how you can complete them faster or maybe do them another time. The earlier you leave for work, the more traffic you’ll avoid and the more time you’ll have to get settled when you first arrive.

8. Start with difficult tasks – For most people, the best time to get stuff done is first thing in the morning. Your brain is fresh and alert after a good night’s sleep, and you’re not recovering from a post-lunch food coma or post-meeting anxiety. So, why not use this time to tackle the hardest tasks? With the tough stuff out of the way, you won’t be scrambling to finish everything at the end of the day.

The start of your workday doesn’t have to be all bad. Try these 8 work tips and you’ll be getting off to a much better start.

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