Success doesn’t come easy, in fact there’s a saying about it: “The only way to guarantee success is with hard work.” That fits for anything you want to achieve. Do you want to be financially secure? Do you want to be a better athlete? Do you want to lose weight? Do you want to be a better parent. For every one of your goals in life you will have to work hard to achieve that goal. But, working hard doesn’t have to seem difficult. In fact, with a little prep and consistency, you can nail your goals before you even get up in the morning. Here’s a few ideas how!
Planning ahead is actually my favorite advice for people who feel like their mornings start on the losing end. It’s amazing how many people begin their morning in a race and end the last couple hours lounging on the couch doing nothing but watching TV.
So, how about you equalize some of your time and spend thirty minutes each evening preparing for the next day. A few easy tasks you can do the night before are:
- Lay out your clothes for the next day.
- Prepare your meals for the next day.
- Start the dishwasher before you go to bed.
- Throw a load of laundry in the washer before bed and swap it to the dryer when you wake up.
- Shower and shave the night before.
- Do a ten minute cleanup of your home.
Trying to do as much as you can the night before to prep for the next day will allow you to wake up and take your time as you get ready in the morning. This leads to less stress and the ability to take control of your life.
Do you remember when you were a kid and wanted to head off to Nashville with guitar in hand? Or, how about your dream of becoming an athlete. Well, just because you have more “Adult” duties now doesn’t mean that you need to put your dreams and passions aside. Whether you always wanted to write a novel, learn a new instrument or become an amazing chef, take time for yourself to pursue that passion. Even just thirty minutes a day to dream and go after that dream will put you in the right direction. After all, aside from hard work, pursuing your dream is the next best way to being successful.
Seriously, this isn’t always easy. Staying positive, for many people, is a near impossible task. But, if you can train yourself to do so, then there will be few things in your life that can keep you from being successful. Like everything else in life you’ll have to work to stay positive. Your life is filled with ups and downs. But, the goal is to try and turn those downs into manageable or positive thoughts. A few ideas:
- When something bad happens, try thinking “How will this event affect me a year from now?” From someone cutting you off on the way to work to someone getting in the “15 items and under” line with a cart of groceries, these small things will not affect you in a year. In most cases, they don’t actually affect you at all, unless you let them.
- Do something unexpectedly nice for someone. Have you ever bought a gift card at Starbucks and asked the cashier to give it to the next person in line? Then walk away to see the reaction from a distance. Being the anonymous giver can do wonders to boost your spirits. Don’t believe me? Give it a try.
- Try to look for the positive. You burn your dinner forcing you to eat ice cream instead. Bummer there, right? When someone is rude to you, then you know how you don’t want to treat others. When someone does something nice for you, take the time to thank that person. Smile at a stranger and say hi.
- Avoid being stagnant. It’s hard to be successful if you spend several hours a day watching TV. How many times have you thought back and said to yourself, “If I just spent twenty minutes cooking instead of watching TV I’d feel a lot better.” Obviously, cooking can be replaced with a bunch of things. Being stagnant causes you to feel lazy, which over time can become a habit — and not a good one.
- Live healthy. You don’t have to go crazy and change your life overnight, but clean eating, walking more, drinking more water, and exercise can change your entire outlook on life. Simple changes such as walking with your kids to the park, light yard work, and eating smaller portions will help you build good habits and help you feel better which is a nice cocktail for success.