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10 Unusual Routines That Will Bring Joy To Your Life

10 Unusual Routines That Will Bring Joy To Your Life

We can’t always travel the world or win a million bucks. The secret is finding the unusual, small routines that will bring you joy every day. Here are 10 that can indeed make a big difference in your overall attitude and enjoyment throughout the day.

1. If you need time for yourself, tell people “I’m busy” – it’s a legitimate excuse.

“In a world of distraction and competing demands, mental focus is a scarce yet precious commodity. If you want more of it, you will have to be intentional about getting it.”
– Michael Hyatt

It’s easy to get so caught up in pleasing people that you forget to take care of yourself. Take the time you need to make sure your health doesn’t suffer on account of others demanding your attention.

2. Once you get off work, stop checking your email – rarely is anything so dire that it can’t be left until the morning.

“BIF stands for “before I forget” and refers to emails sent on evenings or weekends out of fear of forgetting a to-do or follow-up. This sets a mutual expectation of 24/7 work hours and causes a plethora of problems.”
– Tim Ferriss

Unless you own a business, your evenings are your own – this is time for your family, your friends and yourself. Stop letting work interfere with your personal life.

3. Give yourself permission to buy any book you want at any time – it’s an investment in you. Now read them.

“If a man empties his purse into his head, no man can take it away from him. An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.”
– Benjamin Franklin

Reading might be one of the most important things you can do to better yourself. It’s the wisdom of brilliant minds condensed down to a $20 and 2-day commitment. Give yourself that luxury because ultimately, it’s an investment.

4. Drive with the windows down and the music up. If people look, just smile and start dancing.

“You’ve gotta dance like there’s nobody watching, love like you’ll never be hurt, sing like there’s nobody listening, nd live like it’s heaven on earth.”
– William W. Purkey

How long has it been? Let your hair down, stick your head out and watch yourself break into a smile. There’s nothing quite like it, and it’s the simplest way to feel free and let loose.

5. Leave a note on a napkin with a large tip – you’d be surprised how much that means.

“We are most alive when we are loving and actively giving of ourselves because we were made to do these things.”
– Frances Chan

This may mean paying an extra $10 – that you can afford – for a meal that doesn’t quite warrant that amount of a tip. But you may have just made someone’s night. Let them know that someone cares and appreciates their service.

6. Get plenty of rest each night – it’s crucial to your health, sanity, productivity and attitude.

“A good night’s sleep has immediate effects on our productivity, and, best of all, it can even help us keep our other resolutions.”
– Sendhil Mullainathan, professor at Harvard

Sleep is more important than people give it credit for. It’s your body’s way of cleaning the mind. Anyone who believes sleep is for the weak, is misguided in their understanding of your body’s limits and needs.

7. Write down your thoughts for 10 minutes a day – it helps you formulate cohesive thoughts.

“Once we get those muddy, maddening, confusing thoughts [nebulous worries, jitters, and preoccupations] on the page, we face our day with clearer eyes.”
– Julia Cameron

It’s not much – just 10 minutes – but it trains your mind to put feelings and thoughts into tight little packages that can be better understood by the reader and yourself. You might be surprised what you find out about yourself!

8. Create uninterruptable routines for the first hour of the day.

“Morning is an important time of day, because how you spend your morning can often tell you what kind of day you are going to have.”
– Lemony Snicket, “The Blank Book”

Mornings are crucial – they dictate your attitude, your perceptions and your energy for the day. Give yourself the gift of a predictable, enjoyable, rejuvenating morning routine. No stress. No screens. No interruptions.

9. Doodle. In meetings, over dinner, during a movie, at the park… just doodle.

“The very act of creating a Doodle necessarily engages the mind. Doodling IS thinking, soldiers, it’s just thinking in disguise.”
– Sunni Brown

Doodles are a great way to visualize your conscious and subconscious thoughts and put your mind in a trance-like state that fosters creativity and innovation. It’s not just for children – whip out that pen in the next board meeting and let your calm creativity take over.

10. Quit whatever doesn’t add value to your life.

“The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.”
– Hans Hofmann, Introduction to the Bootstrap, 1993

Why waste precious hours of your life on activities that don’t add value to your life? Make room for the things that matter by eliminating the things which don’t. Simplicity is a freeing way to live.

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Last Updated on December 10, 2019

5 Smart Reasons to Start Journal Writing Today

5 Smart Reasons to Start Journal Writing Today

Here’s the truth: your effectiveness at life is not what it could be. You’re missing out.

Each day passes by and you have nothing to prove that it even happened. Did you achieve something? Go on a date? Have an emotional breakthrough? Who knows?

But what you do know is that you don’t want to make the same mistakes that you’ve made in the past.

Our lives are full of hidden gems of knowledge and insight, and the most recent events in our lives contain the most useful gems of all. Do you know why? It’s simple, those hidden lessons are the most up to date, meaning they have the largest impact on what we’re doing right now.

But the question is, how do you get those lessons? There’s a simple way to do it, and it doesn’t involve time machines:

Journal writing.

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Improved mental clarity, the ability to see our lives in the big picture, as well as serving as a piece of evidence cataloguing every success we’ve ever had; we are provided all of the above and more by doing some journal writing.

Journal writing is a useful and flexible tool to help shed light on achieving your goals.

Here’s 5 smart reasons why you should do journal writing:

1. Journals Help You Have a Better Connection with Your Values, Emotions, and Goals

By journaling about what you believe in, why you believe it, how you feel, and what your goals are, you understand your relationships with these things better. This is because you must sort through the mental clutter and provide details on why you do what you do and feel what you feel.

Consider this:

Perhaps you’ve spent the last year or so working at a job you don’t like. It would be easy to just suck it up and keep working with your head down, going on as if it’s supposed to be normal to not like your job. Nobody else is complaining, so why should you, right?

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But a little journal writing will set things straight for you. You don’t like your job. You feel like it’s robbing you of happiness and satisfaction, and you don’t see yourself better there in the future.

The other workers? Maybe they don’t know, maybe they don’t care. But you do, you know and care enough to do something about it. And you’re capable of fixing this problem because your journal writing allows you to finally be honest with yourself about it.

2. Journals Improve Mental Clarity and Help Improve Your Focus

If there’s one thing journal writing is good for, it’s clearing the mental clutter.

How does it work? Simply, whenever you have a problem and write about it in a journal, you transfer the problem from your head to the paper. This empties the mind, allowing allocation of precious resources to problem-solving rather than problem-storing.

Let’s say you’ve been juggling several tasks at work. You’ve got data entry, testing, e-mails, problems with the boss, and so on—enough to overwhelm you—but as you start journal writing, things become clearer and easier to understand: Data entry can actually wait till Thursday; Bill kindly offered earlier to do my testing; For e-mails, I can check them now; the boss is just upset because Becky called in sick, etc.

You become better able to focus and reason your tasks out, and this is an indispensable and useful skill to have.

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3. Journals Improve Insight and Understanding

As a positive consequence of improving your mental clarity, you become more open to insights you may have missed before. As you write your notes out, you’re essentially having a dialogue with yourself. This draws out insights that you would have missed otherwise; it’s almost as if two people are working together to better understand each other. This kind of insight is only available to the person who has taken the time to connect with and understand themselves in the form of writing.

Once you’ve gotten a few entries written down, new insights can be gleaned from reading over them. What themes do you see in your life? Do you keep switching goals halfway through? Are you constantly dating the same type of people who aren’t good for you? Have you slowly but surely pushed people out of your life for fear of being hurt?

All of these questions can be answered by simply self-reflecting, but you can only discover the answers if you’ve captured them in writing. These questions are going to be tough to answer without a journal of your actions and experiences.

4. Journals Track Your Overall Development

Life happens, and it can happen fast. Sometimes we don’t take the time to stop and look around at what’s happening to us at each moment. We don’t get to see the step-by-step progress that we’re making in our own lives. So what happens? One day it’s the future, and you have no idea how you’ve gotten there.

Journal writing allows you to see how you’ve changed over time, so you can see where you did things right, and you can see where you took a misstep and fell.

The great thing about journals is that you’ll know what that misstep was, and you can make sure it doesn’t happen again—all because you made sure to log it, allowing yourself to learn from your mistakes.

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5. Journals Facilitate Personal Growth

The best thing about journal writing is that no matter what you end up writing about, it’s hard to not grow from it. You can’t just look at a past entry in which you acted shamefully and say “that was dumb, anyway!” No, we say “I will never make a dumb choice like that again!”

It’s impossible not to grow when it comes to journal writing. That’s what makes journal writing such a powerful tool, whether it’s about achieving goals, becoming a better person, or just general personal-development. No matter what you use it for, you’ll eventually see yourself growing as a person.

Kickstart Journaling

How can journaling best be of use to you? To vent your emotions? To help achieve your goals? To help clear your mind? What do you think makes journaling such a useful life skill?

Know the answer? Then it’s about time you reap the benefits of journal writing and start putting pen to paper.

Here’s what you can do to start journaling:

Featured photo credit: Jealous Weekends via unsplash.com

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