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15 Daily Habits That Will Make You Happy And Successful

15 Daily Habits That Will Make You Happy And Successful

The world has changed greatly over time and still continues to change today. However, some things remain the same, such us key habits for lasting happiness and success. If you are interested in achieving happiness and success, then you should know some of the key daily habits of truly happy and successful people that have timeless application. Here are 15 of the top daily habits of successful people that can make you truly happy and successful if you apply them in your own life.

1. Plan ahead

In today’s fast-paced life, not many people plan ahead. Those who do think through and plan their days ahead of time set themselves up for true happiness and success. Set clear, actionable goals for the day (and the future) and you will give your chances of success a real boost.

2. Visualize success

Don’t just plan ahead. Visualize your own success and victory to remain focused, motivated and to keep going no matter what. Think about what it will feel like to achieve your dream and acknowledge that more will be achieved during the process of reaching the dream than the actual act of reaching the dream. That is how to keep your dreams alive.

3.   Go where the action is

Don’t shy away from challenges. Challenges give you the opportunity to apply yourself, learn and be part of something wonderful that might make a difference. Truly happy people are not those who hide behind closed doors in times of war, but those who pick up their swords, go where the action is and give it their best shot. It’s much better to try and fail, than fail to try.

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4. Trust your abilities

Everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses, as well as different creativity levels. Truly happy and successful people understand their weak points and also fully believe in their strong points. This allows them to seek help and guidance when they need it and offer the same when they can. Show trust and confidence in yourself and your abilities daily by boldly tackling what needs to be done. It is through self-belief and confidence that you establish routines that push you to success and happiness.

5. Work hard

Hard work and persistence are secret ingredients for lasting success. If you work harder than everyone else and give it your best shot each day, success will come to you eventually and you will enjoy it. The fruits of hard labor are the sweetest.

6. Go home at the end of the day

Some people make a habit of regularly sleeping somewhere else other than home after a long day at work. Don’t do that. Go home to your family every day to set the right example and prove you care and respect your family. Of course, sometimes you might have legitimate reasons not to go straight home at the end of the day, but don’t make excuses for sleeping outside.

7. Get enough sleep

It has lately become fashionable to say people need sleep, but millions of people still don’t get enough sleep today. Your body needs sleep not just for rest and relaxation, but also to prevent sleep disorders like daytime sleepiness that can severely interfere with your ability to perform daily activities that bring happiness and success. Get an average of eight hours of sleep a night for adequate rest and relaxation and to ensure you wake up each morning refreshed and re-energized for the day ahead.

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8. Wake up early

Wake up early at the same time before 6 am daily. The large number of truly happy and successful people who are proud early risers proves that this sleep routing works. If you want to give yourself a head start on the rest of the world, then you must become an early riser yourself.

As the Dalai Lama says, “Everyday, think as you wake up, ‘today I am fortunate to have woken up, I am alive, I have a precious human life, I am not going to waste it. I am going to use all my energies to develop myself, to expand my heart out to others, to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all beings, I am going to have kind thoughts towards others, I am not going to get angry or think badly about others, I am going to benefit others as much as I can.”

9. Exercise daily

Exercise is not only good for your heart and your physical fitness, but also for pumping more oxygen to the brain and improving your brain power. Truly successful and happy people know this and make a habit of exercising daily. Whether it is short jogs in the morning before work or CrossFit workouts in the evening after work, exercise daily to boost your overall well-being, happiness and success.

10. Wear clean, appropriate clothes

Whether it’s a full office outfit like a navy blue suit for bankers, casual attire like jeans for department store attendants or comfy pajamas for home workers, what you wear matters a lot. It can affect how you feel about yourself and the way you perform your duties throughout the day. Wear clean, appropriate clothes every morning to get in the right mindset and facilitate productivity, depending on your work and plans for the day.

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11. Read every day

Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body. Whether it is reading the daily newspaper in the morning or a favorite novel in the afternoon, reading widely and regularly sharpens your mind and broadens your perspective. It helps you understand and appreciate the intricacies of life a lot more.

12. Spend quality time with loved ones

Quality time is giving someone your undivided attention. It can be your spouse, kids, parents or close friends, but spending quality time with loved ones talking and listening to each other strengthens your bond and allows you to  know one another better. It unites you and brings a lot of happiness. Do this regularly and you will feel truly loved, connected and happy in life.

13. Show kindness to other people

As much as 99% of the people you see out there are strangers. But, the majority of these strangers are good and decent people. Show love, concern and kindness to them whenever possible. A simple hello to the person in the elevator with you can make their day. Helping that elderly lady cross the busy road is simply nice and humane. When you show kindness daily you not only make new connections, but also make your own day brighter.

14. Forgive someone new each day

Don’t hold grudges. Grudges weigh you down and hinder your happiness and success. Just forgive and move forward. In fact, forgive someone new every day. If you can’t find someone new to forgive, forgive yourself for things you did (or didn’t do) before you go to bed. It will take the edge off and help you overcome resentment, which steals your time and energy.

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15. Repeat what works for you

When you find what work for you, repeat and strive to do it better. Similarly, review and change what doesn’t work. This is perhaps the most important advice you should take away today. As Aristotle said, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence is not an act, but a habit.”

Featured photo credit: Kris Krug via flickr.com

More by this author

David K. William

David is a publisher and entrepreneur who tries to help professionals grow their business and careers, and gives advice for entrepreneurs.

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Published on January 16, 2019

How to Effectively Manage a Heavy Workload at Work

How to Effectively Manage a Heavy Workload at Work

We’re all busy, but sometimes we go through periods where the work piles up and it seems like it might never end.

You might have such a heavy workload that it feels too intimidating to even start.

You may have said yes to some or too many projects, and now you’re afraid you won’t be able to deliver.

That’s when you need to take a step back, take a deep breath, and start looking at what’s working and what’s not working.

Here’re 13 strategies you can use to get out from under your overwhelming workload:

1. Acknowledge You Can’t Do It All

Many of us have a tendency to think we can do more than we actually can. We take on more and more projects and responsibility and wear numerous hats.

We all have the opportunity to have and take on more work than we can reasonably expect to get done. Unfortunately, our workload is not static. Even now, while you are reading this article, I’m guessing that your inbox is filling up with fresh new tasks.

To make real, effective progress, you have to have both the courage and resourcefulness to say, “This is not working”. Acknowledge that you can’t do it all and look for better solutions.

At any given time in your life, there are likely many things that aren’t going according to plan. You have to be willing to be honest with yourself and those around you about what’s not working for you, both personally and professionally.

The more you exercise your ability to tell the truth about what’s working and what’s not working, the faster you’ll make progress.

2. Focus on Your Unique Strengths

Whether you’re an entrepreneur, a leader or working as part of a team, every individual has unique strengths they can bring to the table.

The challenge is that many people end up doing things that they’re simply not very good at.

In the pursuit of reaching your goals or delivering a project, people end up doing everything themselves or taking on things that don’t play to their unique strengths. This can result in frustration, overwhelm and overwork.

It can mean projects taking a lot longer to complete because of knowledge gaps, or simply not utilizing the unique strengths of other people you work with.

It is often not about how to complete this project more effectively but who can help deliver this project.

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So, what are your unique strengths that will ensure your workload is delivered more effectively? Here’re some questions to help you reflect:

  • Are you a great strategist?
  • Are you an effective planner?
  • Is Project Management your strength?
  • Is communication and bringing people together your strength?
  • Are you the ideas person?
  • Is Implementation your strength?

Think about how you can bring the biggest value to your work and the projects you undertake.

3. Use the Strengths of Your Team

One of the simplest ways to manage your workload effectively is to free up your time so you bring your highest level of energy, focus and strengths to each project.

Delegation or better teamwork is the solution.

Everyone has unique strengths. It’s essential to think teamwork rather than working in isolation to ensure projects can be completed effectively. Besides, every time you give away a task or project that doesn’t play to your unique strengths, you open up an opportunity to do something you’re more talented at. This will empower both yourself and those around you.

Rather than taking on all the responsibilities yourself, look at who you can work with to deliver the best results possible.

4. Take Time for Planning

“Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe”. – Abraham Lincoln

One hour of effective planning could save hours of time. Rather than just rushing in and getting started on projects, take the time to map everything in.

You can take the time to think about:

  • What’s the purpose of the project?
  • How Important is it?
  • When does it need to be delivered by?
  • What is the best result and worst result for this project?
  • What are the KPIs?
  • What does the project plan and key milestones look like?
  • Who is working on this project?
  • What is everyone’s responsibilities?
  • What tolerances can I add in?
  • What are the review stages?
  • What are the challenges we may face and the solutions for these challenges?

Having absolute clarity on the project, the project deliverables and the result you want can save a lot of time. It also gets you clear on the priorities and timelines, so you can block out the required amount of time to focus and concentrate.

5. Focus on Priorities

Not everything is a priority, although it can often feel, in the moment, that it is.

Whatever you’re working on, there is always the Most Urgent, Important or Most Valuable projects or tasks.

One tool you can use to maximize your productivity and focus on your biggest priorities is to use the Eisenhower Matrix. This strategic tool for taking action on the things that matter most is simple. You separate your actions based on four possibilities:

  1. Urgent and important (tasks you will do immediately).
  2. Important, but not urgent (tasks you will schedule to do later).
  3. Urgent, but not important (tasks you will delegate to someone else).
  4. Neither urgent nor important (tasks that you will eliminate).

James Clear has a great description on how to use the Eisenhower Matrix: How to be More Productive By Using the Eisenhower Box

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    The method I use with my coaching clients is to ask them to lay out their Top Five priorities for the day. Then to start with the most important priority first. At the end of the day, you review performance against these priorities.

    If you didn’t get everything accomplished, start the next day with your number one priority.

    If you are given additional task/projects during the day, then you will need to gauge their importance V the other priorities.

    6. Take Time Out

    To stay on top of a heavy workload, it’s important to take time out to rest and recuperate.

    If your energy levels are high and your mind and body is refreshed and alert, you are in more of a peak state to handle a heavy workload.

    Take time out of your day to go for a walk or get some exercise in. Leave early when possible and spend time with people who give you a lot of energy.

    In the background, it’s essential to get a good night’s sleep and eat healthily to sharpen the mind.

    Take a look at this article learn about The Importance of Scheduling Downtime.

    7. Maintain a Healthy Work-Life Balance

    Maintaining a healthy work-life balance can be tough. The balance we all crave is very different from one another.

    I’ve written before about 13 Work Life Balance Tips for a Happy and Productive Life. Working longer and harder doesn’t mean achieving more, especially if you have no time to spend with the people that matter most. The quality of who you are as a person, the relationships you have, the time you spend in work, deciding on what matters most is completely within your control.

    Work-life balance is about finding peace within yourself to be fully present, wherever you are, whether that be in the office or at home, right now. It’s about choosing what matters most and creating your own balanced life.

    If you feel there is not enough balance, then it may be time to make a change.

    8. Stop Multitasking

    Multi-tasking is a myth. Your brain simply can’t work effectively by doing more than one thing at a time—at least more than one thing that requires focused attention.

    So get your list of priorities (see earlier point), do the most important thing first, then move to the next item and work down your list.

    When you split your focus over a multitude of different areas, you can’t consistently deliver a high performance. You won’t be fully present on the one task or project at hand.

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    If you allocate blocked time and create firm boundaries for specific activities and commitments, you won’t feel so overwhelmed or overworked with everything you have to do.

    9. Work in Blocks of Time

    To keep your energy up to produce your best results it’s essential to take regular breaks.

    I use the 60-60-30 method myself and teach it to my coaching clients.

    Work on a project for a sustained period of 50 minutes.

    Then take a 10-minute break. This could be taking a walk, having a healthy snack or just having a conversation with someone.

    Then continue to work on the project for a further 50 minutes.

    Then take another 10-minute break.

    Then take a complete 30-minute break to unplug from the work. This could be time for a proper lunch, a quick bit of exercise, reading or having a walk.

    By simply taking some time out, your energy levels stay up, the quality of your work improves and you reduce the risk of becoming burned out.

    10. Get Rid of Distractions

    Make an estimation on how many times you are distracted during an average working day. Now take that number and multiply it by 25. According to Gloria Mark in her study on The Cost of Interrupted Work, it takes us an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to return to the original task after interruption.[1]

    “Our research has shown that attention distraction can lead to higher stress, a bad mood and lower productivity.”

    Distractions don’t just take up your time during the distraction, they can derail your mental progress and focus for almost 25 minutes. So, if you are distracted 5 times per day, you could be losing almost 2 hours every day of productive work and almost 10 hours every week.

    If you have an important project to work on, find a space where you won’t be distracted, or try doing this.

    11. Commit Focused Time to Smaller Tasks

    You know sometimes, you need to simply tackle these tasks and take action on them. But there’s always something more pressing.

    Small tasks can often get in the way of your most important projects. They sit there on your daily To Do list but are often forgotten about because of more important priorities or because they hold no interest for you. But they take up mental energy. They clutter your mind.

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    Commit to spending a specific period of time completing all the small tasks you have on your To Do list. It will give you peace of mind and the space to focus more on your bigger priorities.

    12. Take a Time Audit

    Do you know exactly where your time is going each day? Are you spending too long on certain projects and tasks to the detriment of bigger opportunities?

    Spend a bit of time to analyze where you are spending your time. This insight will amaze you and give you the clarity to start adjusting where you focus your time and on what projects.

    You can start by taking a piece of paper and creating three columns:

    Column A is Priority Work. Column B is Good Work. Column C is low value work or stuff.

    Each day, write down the project or task and the time spent on each. Allocate that time to one of the columns.

    At the end of the week, record the total time spent in each column.

    If you are spending far too much time on certain types of work, look to change things so your focused time is in Column B and C.

    13. Protect Your Confidence

    It is essential to protect our confidence to ensure we don’t get overwhelmed, stressed and lose belief.

    When you have confidence as a daily resource, you are in a better position to problem solve, learn quicker, respond to anything, adjust to anything, and achieve your biggest opportunities.

    Confidence gives you the ability to transform fear into focused and relaxed thinking, communication, and action. This is key to put your mind into a productive state.

    When confidence is high, you can clearly see the possibilities at hand and create strategies to take advantage of them, or to solve the challenges you face each day.

    Final Words

    A heavy workload can be tough to deal with and can cause stress, burnout and ongoing frustration.

    The key is to tackle it head on, rather than let it go on and compound the long-term effects. Hopefully, you can take action on at least one of these tips.

    If it gets too much, and negatively affects your physical and mental health, it may be time to talk to someone. Instead of dealing with it alone and staying unhappier, resentful and getting to a point where you simply can’t cope, you have to make a change for your own sanity.

    Featured photo credit: Hannah Wei via unsplash.com

    Reference

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