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10 Evening Habits Of Highly Successful People

10 Evening Habits Of Highly Successful People

We all know that early birds get more things done by making the most out of their mornings and setting the day right for successful completion of all goals and tasks. But what about the evening habits? Successful people not only have healthy morning habits, but they also know how to finish off their day right. They all have particular habits, so here are the top 10 that can help plan a more productive tomorrow:

1. Going into mindfulness

Every entrepreneur knows the importance of being “mindful”, which means they know how to stop their verbal thinking. This is the chatterbox in the mind that reminds them of the of the bad experiences they had today, the business meeting they have tomorrow and that personal issue they still need to take care of later. Some people find it useful to meditate, listen to some relaxing music and tune into their own world. Simply laying down and focusing on your breath and body is a significant stress reliever.

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It is crucial to know how to unwind after a long working day, and the best way to do it is by going into a “non-verbal thinking” mode. Simply stop the little voice in your head and actively work in being present in every given moment.

2. Read a book

Successful entrepreneurs read daily. They all know the importance of educating themselves every single day in order to achieve better results in their professional and personal lives. Reading will not only make you more likely to succeed, but if you do it before going to bed, it can really help you to reduce stress and progressively calm you down. It is also really useful for improving your creative cognitive thinking.

3. Unplug from social media

At the end of each working day, the most important thing is to switch off distractions such as social media, emails and messaging to create some time for yourself. Do something you love every night before you sleep. Go to bed earlier, take a bath, go to that Zumba class you were postponing for so long, or spend quality time with the person you love. You will only thank yourself when you stop wasting your time on social media and start tending to yourself and the people you cherish.

4. Organize the following day

Having a well-written plan can really benefit the tasks you have set for the day. It is really difficult to remember all the things you need to do, so why not write them all down in a journal or a to-do list? Successful people know the importance of a well-planned day and this allows them to enjoy themselves in the evening. So before you go to bed, grab a planner or a notebook and write down your 3 most important goals for tomorrow. Be honest with yourself in setting the right amount of time to achieve each individual goal.

5. Spend time with family

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Life is not all about work- we all need to enjoy ourselves and spend quality time with the people we love. Successful people know how to make time for their family and loved ones. Going for a walk, playing a game with your kids or just enjoying a movie night, can all be really great bonding exercises to strengthen and reinforce your close relationships.

6. Get a workout

After an 8-hour-day, it is crucial you go out and get your body moving. I am sure you have heard this many times, but exercise can really benefit your body, mind, spirit, and boost your self confidence to help you maintain a healthy lifestyle. In order for you to be more productive in your endeavours, you need to make sure you include a little workout in your routine.

7. Be grateful

Being grateful and appreciative of all you have in your life is the key to creating more abundance and success. Take time in your day to appreciate everyone you have by your side and all the things you have accomplished. You can never truly be happy or successful if you are not first thankful for the things you already have. When you are truly grateful, you are more positive and optimistic and you start attracting more things and situations to be grateful for.

8. Connect to oneness

The concept of oneness basically means that we are connected with every human being in this world, and we are part of the same source. So every night take a moment and try to connect with yourself, your spirit, your mind, and your body. Meditation and yoga are really helpful for that because their routines introduce a series of breathing exercises that help you connect to your untapped energy. It helps you quiet your mind, relax your body, and after practising for some time you might be able to feel more connected to the world outside your own.

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9. Create your art

If you are a night owl and you like getting things done in the evening, this could be the best time of your day to work on some art. If you love painting, why not try creating something meaningful? Spend some time on developing, improving and finding your passions and true life purpose. By creating something artistic, you might even discover some hidden talents.

10. Go through your long and short term goals

Successful people all know how to visualize their goals. Try to have a 5 or 10 year plan with some short term goals that include some weekly and even monthly milestones. Another technique you can use, is to write your goals down and go through them often. This will simply reinforce your desire to achieve them, promote inspiration and the motivation to pursue them.

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Featured photo credit: Elon Musk – The Summit 2013/Heisenberg Media via flickr.com

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Filiz Mehmedova

Writing Blogger

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Last Updated on July 17, 2019

The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain)

The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain)

What happens in our heads when we set goals?

Apparently a lot more than you’d think.

Goal setting isn’t quite so simple as deciding on the things you’d like to accomplish and working towards them.

According to the research of psychologists, neurologists, and other scientists, setting a goal invests ourselves into the target as if we’d already accomplished it. That is, by setting something as a goal, however small or large, however near or far in the future, a part of our brain believes that desired outcome is an essential part of who we are – setting up the conditions that drive us to work towards the goals to fulfill the brain’s self-image.

Apparently, the brain cannot distinguish between things we want and things we have. Neurologically, then, our brains treat the failure to achieve our goal the same way as it treats the loss of a valued possession. And up until the moment, the goal is achieved, we have failed to achieve it, setting up a constant tension that the brain seeks to resolve.

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Ideally, this tension is resolved by driving us towards accomplishment. In many cases, though, the brain simply responds to the loss, causing us to feel fear, anxiety, even anguish, depending on the value of the as-yet-unattained goal.

Love, Loss, Dopamine, and Our Dreams

The brains functions are carried out by a stew of chemicals called neurotransmitters. You’ve probably heard of serotonin, which plays a key role in our emotional life – most of the effective anti-depressant medications on the market are serotonin reuptake inhibitors, meaning they regulate serotonin levels in the brain leading to more stable moods.

Somewhat less well-known is another neurotransmitter, dopamine. Among other things, dopamine acts as a motivator, creating a sensation of pleasure when the brain is stimulated by achievement. Dopamine is also involved in maintaining attention – some forms of ADHD are linked to irregular responses to dopamine.[1]

So dopamine plays a key role in keeping us focused on our goals and motivating us to attain them, rewarding our attention and achievement by elevating our mood. That is, we feel good when we work towards our goals.

Dopamine is related to wanting – to desire. The attainment of the object of our desire releases dopamine into our brains and we feel good. Conversely, the frustration of our desires starves us of dopamine, causing anxiety and fear.

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One of the greatest desires is romantic love – the long-lasting, “till death do us part” kind. It’s no surprise, then, that romantic love is sustained, at least in part, through the constant flow of dopamine released in the presence – real or imagined – of our true love. Loss of romantic love cuts off that supply of dopamine, which is why it feels like you’re dying – your brain responds by triggering all sorts of anxiety-related responses.

Herein lies obsession, as we go to ever-increasing lengths in search of that dopamine reward. Stalking specialists warn against any kind of contact with a stalker, positive or negative, because any response at all triggers that reward mechanism. If you let the phone ring 50 times and finally pick up on the 51st ring to tell your stalker off, your stalker gets his or her reward, and learns that all s/he has to do is wait for the phone to ring 51 times.

Romantic love isn’t the only kind of desire that can create this kind of dopamine addiction, though – as Captain Ahab (from Moby Dick) knew well, any suitably important goal can become an obsession once the mind has established ownership.

The Neurology of Ownership

Ownership turns out to be about a lot more than just legal rights. When we own something, we invest a part of ourselves into it – it becomes an extension of ourselves.

In a famous experiment at Cornell University, researchers gave students school logo coffee mugs, and then offered to trade them chocolate bars for the mugs. Very few were willing to make the trade, no matter how much they professed to like chocolate. Big deal, right? Maybe they just really liked those mugs![2]

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But when they reversed the experiment, handing out chocolate and then offering to trade mugs for the candy, they found that now, few students were all that interested in the mugs. Apparently the key thing about the mugs or the chocolate wasn’t whether students valued whatever they had in their possession, but simply that they had it in their possession.

This phenomenon is called the “endowment effect”. In a nutshell, the endowment effect occurs when we take ownership of an object (or idea, or person); in becoming “ours” it becomes integrated with our sense of identity, making us reluctant to part with it (losing it is seen as a loss, which triggers that dopamine shut-off I discussed above).

Interestingly, researchers have found that the endowment effect doesn’t require actual ownership or even possession to come into play. In fact, it’s enough to have a reasonable expectation of future possession for us to start thinking of something as a part of us – as jilted lovers, gambling losers, and 7-year olds denied a toy at the store have all experienced.

The Upshot for Goal-Setters

So what does all this mean for would-be achievers?

On one hand, it’s a warning against setting unreasonable goals. The bigger the potential for positive growth a goal has, the more anxiety and stress your brain is going to create around it’s non-achievement.

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It also suggests that the common wisdom to limit your goals to a small number of reasonable, attainable objectives is good advice. The more goals you have, the more ends your brain thinks it “owns” and therefore the more grief and fear the absence of those ends is going to cause you.

On a more positive note, the fact that the brain rewards our attentiveness by releasing dopamine means that our brain is working with us to direct us to achievement. Paying attention to your goals feels good, encouraging us to spend more time doing it. This may be why outcome visualization — a favorite technique of self-help gurus involving imagining yourself having completed your objectives — has such a poor track record in clinical studies. It effectively tricks our brain into rewarding us for achieving our goals even though we haven’t done it yet!

But ultimately, our brain wants us to achieve our goals, so that it’s a sense of who we are that can be fulfilled. And that’s pretty good news!

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Featured photo credit: Alexa Williams via unsplash.com

Reference

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