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10 Things You Need To Remind Yourself Of To Begin A Brighter Day

10 Things You Need To Remind Yourself Of To Begin A Brighter Day

Sometimes, it’s hard to know what’s needed in order to begin your day in the best way possible. Doing exercise, checking your emails, not checking your emails, having a shower, sleeping in, having a light breakfast, having a full breakfast…the list goes on and on until it’s an unmanageable mess and you can’t decide what to do one way or another.

Want to know how to begin your day? We’ve compiled some of the best things to do and remind yourself of to make sure you begin your day on the right note and keep having a great, bright, and positive day.

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1. Remember that it’s a brand new day

Upon waking up, a positive way to begin your day is to simply acknowledge the fact that this is a brand new day, unlike any you will ever have again or will have ever had previously. Some days, the bravest thing we can do is wake up and face the world, and it’s made much easier by the fact that every day is the chance to do something right, to be the best version of yourself you can be. You can work towards those goals of yours, those dreams, and you can achieve anything you want in those same hours as are available to everyone else. Begin your day with the knowledge of that fact and go forth into a brighter day feeling indestructible.

2. Have a proper breakfast

One of the best ways to begin your day is to actually sit down and have a proper breakfast, rather than rushing around and either skipping the meal altogether or grabbing something on the go. Wake up early and carve out the time for a breakfast that will act as the proper fuel for your day ahead. There’s something incredibly satisfying about sitting down with a full and enjoyable breakfast you can eat and savor—a full English, some yogurt and honey, scrambled eggs, orange juice—whatever really attracts your taste buds in the morning, and if you want to have a brighter day, go ahead and enjoy a piece of the day entirely for yourself.

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3. Spend time in the sun

Or just generally outside, if preferable, because let’s be honest, the weather isn’t always pleasant. The point is that if you want to begin your day in a positive manner, you should spend time outside in nature or at least in fresh air. Numerous studies have shown that spending time out in nature, or even living close to nature, can positively affect a person’s physical, mental and spiritual well-being. It’s advisable for everyone to try and spend a little time with nature, even if it’s only for five minutes during a lunch break. Go sit out in a park or take a walk in a forest. It’ll be reinvigorating and rejuvenating and will help you continue your day.

4. Check your emails as little as possible

We’re all experts at checking our emails at numerous, regular intervals and often it proves to be such a disruptive time-vampire that it can make even the process of beginning your day much more broken. One of the best ways to have a brighter day is to make sure that you’re not constantly running back and forth from the altars of Outlook and Gmail. A lot of the time you won’t be needing something specific and it’ll be wasting time for the sake of wasting time, purely out of habit. Limit yourself to checking your emails every half hour, or even better, every hour. You’ll feel more freedom and will enjoy having more time and focus throughout the day.

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5. Smile at everyone

Smiling is good for you. It’s a scientific fact that smiling helps improve positive feelings, mental health, and has plenty of physiological benefits, even if you start off faking that smile. Let’s face it, the world can suck a lot of the time, but putting a smile on your face can be the perfect way to begin your day on the right foot. Smiling encourages positivity and also helps affect other people. Several studies have shown that smiling at other people makes them much more likely to smile back, a reciprocal gesture developed to foster social inclusivity through our millennia of evolution. Essentially, smiling and smiling back helps you feel more positive and generally better, something we’re designed to do. What better way to begin your day?

6. Read something good

Begin your day by reading something good, something that makes you smile or makes you think, because nothing will wake up your mind and inspire you to have a great day more than reading something you love or that interests you. Reading widens your horizons, focuses your mind, and enlightens you to new ideas, new thoughts, and new stories that can help positively shape you. Read a chapter of a novel, read a magazine article that caught your eye. Read it on the bus to work, read it during your lunch, and use it as a break and as a way to have a brighter, better day.

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7. Have something sweet

Having something sweet might not be the best idea first thing in the morning (see tip 2 for some breakfast suggestions, because three donuts does not a good breakfast make) but planning a treat throughout the day is a perfect motivator to help you begin your day. It doesn’t even have to be sweet—treat yourself to something nice and that is guaranteed to make you happy and smile. Keep it in your back pocket and make it a part of your schedule so that you get to begin your day in a positive way and with at least one treat set for later.

8. Use a to-do list

To-do lists are the new kind of social accessory that everyone seems to be carrying around with them, or at least the people I know. To-do lists are extremely useful, however, and they can certainly help you begin your day on a bright and positive note when utilized right. Preparing a to-do list the night before can be extremely beneficial, as it allows you to assess your goals for the day, state your objectives and determine which tasks need accomplishing. It also provides some much-needed mental space; once you’ve jotted everything down, it’s safe and on paper or electronically stored. Use that to-do list to begin your day right so that you wake up happier, more at ease, and in a much more relaxed state, allowing you to have a bright day.

9. Have fun plans

Getting off of work gives a rush of euphoria that nearly everyone feels, and one of the best ways to begin your day is to ensure you have some awesome plans lined up for when you get off work or finish all your duties for the day. Don’t get me wrong, it doesn’t have to be base jumping or dinner with Beyoncé, but having something positive, fun and enjoyable waiting for you at the end of the day can make the beginning of your day infinitely easier. Make a date with yourself for an evening of reading, TV, and takeout; go out dancing and drinking with some work colleagues and friends; go see a film on a date; absolutely anything! It ensures you can begin your day with a positive end goal and a treat at the end of things to make it all worthwhile.

10. Get plenty of sleep

Lastly, the best way to begin your day brighter and happier is to get plenty of sleep. Yes, I know there’s a culture of ‘let’s see how little sleep I need to function’ and wearing your three hours of sleep like a badge of honor, but getting such a small amount of shut-eye can lead to a multitude of health problems and a complete shutdown of any sense of healthy productivity or well-being in general. The best way to begin your day? Make sure it’s been preceded by a good amount of restful sleep so you can ready yourself for a productive and brighter day.

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Chris Haigh

Writer, baker, co-host of "Good Evening Podcast" and "North By Nerdwest".

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Published on April 16, 2019

How Self Care Can Help You Live Your Best Life

How Self Care Can Help You Live Your Best Life

When was the last time you did something for yourself?

Whether it was deciding to treat yourself with a little something or travel for some R&R, how often do you practice self-care?

Well, as good as above sounds, there’s a common misconception that many of us have about self-care: that it’s only about indulgence and enjoyment.

However, self-care goes far beyond indulgence. It’s actually about respecting your mind and body, understanding its limits, and being able to take care of every part of yourself, in a holistic way.

And, you really don’t have to go to extreme measures or do anything specific–like meditating or following a plant based diet–in order to practice self-care. You just have to make sure that what you’re doing is in your best interests.

So how can you make that happen?

Below are a few proven methods that will help you become a better version of you. Follow through with these regularly and you’ll be well on your way to living your very best life.

Listen to Yourself

The bulk of self-care is knowing yourself.

This means knowing your body’s limitations, and being in tune with your feelings, emotions and thoughts. So it’s important, then, to know who you are and what you want to do in life, in order to truly say that you know yourself. 

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What is your purpose?

Have you ever thought about this question?

Your purpose doesn’t have to remain the same throughout your life. What you found a purpose in at age 19 would likely be different at age 49.

In your current situation, think about the different roles that you have – as a working professional, a spouse, a partner, a parent, etc.

Do you feel like you are fulfilling your purpose through any of these roles?

All you have to do is ensure that what you’re chasing is meaningful to you; this will bring focus and motivation as you strive to achieve your goals.

If you have your purpose defined, then that’s awesome! You know what drives you and why.

But, if you don’t feel like you have a purpose nailed down, it’s good to start by asking why.

For example, why are you working in your particular job or industry? If the reason is vague or unclear, then your motivational energy will be the same. In which case, you may find yourself not having a direction for where you’re headed in life.

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If you’d like to learn more about finding your purpose, then I recommend you check out this article:

How to Get Motivated and Be Happy Every Day When You Wake Up

Seek Out Continuous Education

Now, this may seem less common when you think of self-care, but lifelong learning is incredibly useful and an important component of taking care of yourself.

It’s Super Practical

Lifelong learning is extremely practical these days and does not require as much effort as it may have in the past. Long gone are the days when you could only find information on something by visiting a library. In this day of the internet, anything you can imagine is at your fingertips.

You don’t need to physically go to a learning institution to learn. You can watch Youtube videos to learn new skills, take online courses to earn a degree, and scroll through an endless amount of articles, books and journals from reputable news and informative sites.

When you’re constantly pushing yourself to learn and take up new things, your mental health also improves. Research shows that an active and engaged mind is responsible for diminishing age-related memory loss and improves overall cognitive abilities.

Your Confidence Will Skyrocket

You’ll also have improved self worth as it teaches you to step outside of your comfort zone, which will undoubtedly improve your confidence.

You’ll also connect better with others by expanding your knowledge base. Learning exposes you to a multitude of new ideas and perspectives that you may have otherwise never considered. This also increases your adaptability. Whether it’s at work or just wanting to adapt to society, your peers, and loved ones, life long learning prepares you to take on new challenges.

You’ll Be More Desired in the Job Market

Another obvious reason for continuous education, is that your employability will also increase.

With the ever changing economy, and huge influences from technology, social media, science etc., job descriptions today are moving targets. Assignments and roles change so quickly in response to changing business demands, it becomes a Herculean task to keep a job description database current.

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In years past, stability was a characteristic of the world of work. Procedures, information, jobs, and organizations were established and provided continuity. Education was completed in the first 14 to 22 years of one’s life, followed by a long career occasionally punctuated by short-term job training.

Today, however, jobs, companies, and technology are disappearing and being created simultaneously. To remain current and maintain a competitive advantage in the human capital marketplace, an individual is challenged to continually learn.

People return to school at every age to enrich their skills and knowledge for their current positions. Some even prepare themselves for new jobs or career changes, moving them forward into new opportunities and technology.

We can be assured that we will be challenged to continue to learn new tasks and information throughout our lives. Successful careers belong to flexible, curious learners who are prepared for opportunities because they know themselves and where they make their best contribution. As Peter Drucker, the father of modern management stated,

“Knowledge is choice.”

Lifelong learning also increases social awareness and perspective. To genuinely understand and empathize with others, increase social awareness, and foster strong interpersonal relationships, it’s important to seek out new perspectives. Enhancing the skills that positively impact emotional intelligence can bring even greater happiness and success, both personally and at work; and, this is all part of self-care.

Improve Your Habits (Both at Work and at Home)

Now, the last piece of advice I want to introduce to your self-care regimen, is to improve your habits.

Habits define who you are, and are built up over time. You are what you eat is a great example of this. If you make it a habit to eat foods that nourish your body, rather than make your body feel bad, then you will be much healthier overall.

Good Habits Allow You to Reach Your Goals

Since habits dictate your days and nights, such as waking up every morning to get to work before a certain time, or brushing your teeth before bedtime every night, they play a major role in whether we do or do not reach our goals.

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When you form habits that allow you to progress towards your goals, you’re automatically living a purposeful day, everyday.

Habits Make Your Time a Priority

How do you spend your free time? Do you opt to lounge on the couch watching Netflix passively, or do you engage in activities that support your purpose in life?

It’s natural to waste a lot of time during the day, but fostering good habits will make you set a pattern for how you spend your time and give you the choice of what you choose to spend your time on. By improving your habits, you’ll find that you can be a LOT more productive. When you create good habits, you become more efficient with your time and a lot less is wasted.

This in essence creates an overall positive influence on your life, allowing you to treat your mind and body well, which is why improving your habits are so important to self-care.

Your Well Being Comes First

We live in such a fast-paced society, where we are often so caught up in our work, families, maintaining our social lives, our studies and everything in between. It’s an understatement to say that life can get a little overwhelming at times.

If you’ve ever watched the safety video onboard a plane, you’ll know that they always ask for a parent or adult to put on the safety mask first, before tending to the child. This may sound selfish, but the fact is that if you truly want to ensure the child’s safety, then your safety needs to come first so that you can protect and care for the child without complications from your end.

The same goes for self-care. We need to ensure that our well being is priority, so that we can be the best for the people around us.

Listening to yourself, practicing lifelong learning and improving your habits are steps that you can take to ensure you’re constantly in the best state of mind, alongside the indulgence and rest that you reward yourself with.

Featured photo credit: Photo by Raychan on Unsplash via unsplash.com

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