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10 Habits To Make You Happy and Productive Every Day

10 Habits To Make You Happy and Productive Every Day

Beautiful girl sitting on a lawn in a summer garden

    What makes you different from other people are the habits you have and practice daily. What you do every day from the morning until the evening has such a significant influence on the way it will shape you as a person and help you live a happier life. By having a particular routine you write your own page for each day. If you want to feel more productive with the work you do and satisfied after each task done, you really need to think what you are doing in order to accomplish your daily goals. By including a few of these habits, you will feel more fulfilled because these habits work from me every day and keep me motivated to achieve even more!

    1. Wake Up Early

    If you want to have more time to achieve the things you set for the day, just wake up an hour earlier. You decide what to do with the extra minutes you have every morning – you can spend it to have a delicious breakfast, pick up your clothes, and get ready or dance on your favorite music. Whatever it is, just put some time aside to do the things you love before you kick off for the day!

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    2. List the things you are grateful for

    Writing a few things you are thankful for in your journal will create a positive and fulfilling start of the day. It is so important from time to time to stop and really think and appreciate what you have in your life. Being grateful opens up your heart to be more grateful and attract even greater things in your world. Happiness is in the little things such as giving appreciation and showing gratefulness to yourself and the people you love.

    3. Go through your goals for the day

    If you really want to be productive each day, you must read or think through the main things you have to accomplish daily. Try to set a few main targets and really focus on achieving them instead of putting too many and having the trouble to go through all of them. Be really honest with yourself how much you can achieve for one day. Do feel fulfilled with yourself if you achieve even one main goal for the day! Start with something small and constantly add to the list and eventually you will manage to handle more things daily once you get more practice.


    4. Pack a healthy snack for work or school

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    Healthy body = Healthy mind. In order to create more stuff every day, you need to have enough energy for that. And you can get that essential energy only if you eat something nutritional and healthy. Replace the chocolate with a banana if you want something sweeter and bring some salty nuts if you need to satisfy your cravings for salty food.

    5. Switch off your wifi or your phone and be present

    Going offline throughout the day is so important to be more productive and happy with yourself. Social media tends to get us distracted and we cannot really achieve the goals for the day if we are not truly present. Try to put your phone away for about 30 minutes and tell yourself that you will only focus on your work for that time. You can celebrate after that with a 5-10 min short break online and then – do the same for the next half an hour or more!

    6. Take a short walk or exercise

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    If you tend to sit for most of the time while you are at school or work, taking a short walk during lunch break could be really beneficial for you! We spend so much time indoors that we forget the importance of doing any physical activity and having fresh air. Taking a walk can clear your mind, boost your energy and well-being and recharge your batteries for the rest of the tasks you need to accomplish!

    7. Read a few pages from a book

    It is so essential to spend time every day on self-growth and self-education. There are so many books out there on various topics such as health, happiness, successful relationships and personal development. For example by reading a spiritual book daily you will add up to your positive thinking and attitude towards yourself and the outside people or by reading a skill-orientated book you can learn or enhance an asset.

    8. Write your goals for the next day

    Before going to sleep write down your goals for the next day. This will really help you organize tasks for tomorrow and give you satisfaction that you have a well written plan for each day of the week.

    9. Prepare your lunch for tomorrow 

    You would ask why this will make me happy and productive? It will make you so because packing your own food for school or work will help you create a useful habit for you to take better care of your body and health. Prepare some nutritional lunch that will give you the energy you need to create more and be more productive and satisfied with yourself. If you do prepare it the night before you will also have more time for yourself in the morning and you will not need to rush around your place to leave on time.

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    10. Go to sleep with positive thought

    Think of a few amazing things that happened today. By doing this you will sleep with a positive mind and grateful heart and will be even more excited for the following day that will bring more and more exciting things. To help yourself to fall asleep with a positive thought you can listen to some meditation music, write down your thoughts in a journal or simply thank yourself for giving your best that day. Do not forget to appreciate yourself at the end of each day too, you are doing your best in order to be happy and productive every day!

     

    Featured photo credit: Girl on a lawn/ Josef Seibel via flickr.com

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    Filiz Mehmedova

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    Last Updated on July 8, 2020

    How to Prevent Decision Fatigue From Clouding Your Judgement

    How to Prevent Decision Fatigue From Clouding Your Judgement

    What is decision fatigue? Let me explain this with an example:

    When determining a court ruling, there are many factors that contribute to their final verdict. You probably assume that the judge’s decision is influenced solely by the nature of the crime committed or the particular laws that were broken. While this is completely valid, there is an even greater influential factor that dictates the judge’s decision: the time of day.

    In 2012, a research team from Columbia University[1] examined 1,112 court rulings set in place by a Parole Board Judge over a 10 month period. The judge would have to determine whether the individuals in question would be released from prison on parole, or a change in the parole terms.

    While the facts of the case often take precedence in decision making, the judges mental state had an alarming influence on their verdict.

    As the day goes on, the chance of a favorable ruling drops:

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      Image source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

      Does the time of day, or the judges level of hunger really contribute that greatly to their decision making? Yes, it does.

      The research went on to show that at the start of the day the likelihood of the judging giving out a favorable ruling was somewhere around 65%.

      But as the morning dragged on, the judge became fatigued and drained from making decision after decision. As more time went on, the odds of receiving a favorable ruling decreased steadily until it was whittled down to zero.

      However, right after their lunch break, the judge would return to the courtroom feeling refreshed and recharged. Energized by their second wind, their leniency skyrockets back up to a whopping 65%. And again, as the day drags on to its finish, the favorable rulings slowly diminish along with the judge’s spirits.

      This is no coincidence. According to the carefully recorded research, this was true for all 1,112 cases. The severity of the crime didn’t matter. Whether it was rape, murder, theft, or embezzlement, the criminal was more likely to get a favorable ruling either early in the morning, or after the judges lunch break.

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      Are You Suffering from Decision Fatigue Too?

      We all suffer from decision fatigue without even realizing it.

      Perhaps you aren’t a judge with the fate of an individual’s life at your disposal, but the daily decisions you make for yourself could hinder you if you’re not in the right head-space.

      Regardless of how energetic you feel (as I imagine it is somehow caffeine induced anyway), you will still experience decision fatigue. Just like every other muscle, your brain gets tired after periods of overuse, pumping out one decision after the next. It needs a chance to rest in order to function at a productive rate.

      The Detrimental Consequences of Decision Fatigue

      When you are in a position such as a Judge, you can’t afford to let your mental state dictate your decision making; but it still does. According to George Lowenstein, an American educator and economy expert, decision fatigue is to blame for poor decision making among members of high office. The disastrous level of failure among these individuals to control their impulses could be directly related to their day to day stresses at work and their private life.

      When you’re just too tired to think, you stop caring. And once you get careless, that’s when you need to worry. Decision fatigue can contribute to a number of issues such as impulse shopping (guilty), poor decision making at work, and poor decision making with after work relationships. You know what I’m talking about. Don’t dip your pen in the company ink.

      How to Make Decision Effectively

      Either alter the time of decision making to when your mind is the most fresh, or limit the number of decisions to be made. Try utilizing the following hacks for more effective decision making.

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      1. Make Your Most Important Decisions within the First 3 Hours

      You want to make decisions at your peak performance, so either first thing in the morning, or right after a break.

      Research has actually shown that you are the most productive for the first 3 hours[2] of your day. Utilize this time! Don’t waste it on trivial decisions such as what to wear, or mindlessly scrolling through social media.

      Instead, use this time to tweak your game plan. What do you want to accomplish? What can you improve? What steps do you need to take to reach these goals?

      2. Form Habits to Reduce Decision Making

      You don’t have to choose all the time.

      Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but it doesn’t have to be an extravagant spread every morning. Make a habit out of eating a similar or quick breakfast, and cut that step of your morning out of the way. Can’t decide what to wear? Pick the first thing that catches your eye. We both know that after 20 minutes of changing outfits you’ll just go with the first thing anyway.

      Powerful individuals such as Steve Jobs, Barack Obama, and Mark Zuckerberg don’t waste their precious time deciding what to wear. In fact, they have been known to limiting their outfits down to two options in order to reduce their daily decision making.

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      3. Take Frequent Breaks for a Clearer Mind

      You are at your peak of productivity after a break, so to reap the benefits, you need to take lots of breaks! I know, what a sacrifice. If judges make better decisions in the morning and after their lunch break, then so will you.

      The reason for this is because the belly is now full, and the hunger is gone. Roy Baumeister, Florida State University social psychologist[3] had found that low-glucose levels take a negative toll on decision making. By taking a break to replenish your glucose levels, you will be able to focus better and improve your decision making abilities.

      Even if you aren’t hungry, little breaks are still necessary to let your mind refresh, and come back being able to think more clearly.

      Structure your break times. Decide beforehand when you will take breaks, and eat energy sustaining snacks so that your energy level doesn’t drop too low. The time you “lose” during your breaks will be made up in the end, as your productivity will increase after each break.

      So instead of slogging through your day, letting your mind deteriorate and fall victim to the daily abuses of decision making, take a break, eat a snack. Let your mind refresh and reset, and jump-start your productivity throughout the day.

      More Tips About Decision Making

      Featured photo credit: Kelly Sikkema via unsplash.com

      Reference

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