How I Doubled My Business And Took 3x More Vacation – 5 Simple Tactics (Part 3)
In the first post of this series, I shared with you the five keys that changed my life from drudgery and stress to fun and engaging.
- See clearly
- Live 80/20
- Love routine
- Talk to yourself differently
- Ask for help
In Part 1 of this series, I showed how writing down your vision for the business you want to build gives you laser-like clarity in your decision-making.
In Part 2 of this series, I showed you how truly living the 80/20 rule frees up so much time to do more or to have more fun.
In this article, I want to show you to take that decision-making to a higher level and free up hours of time in your days and weeks so you can fully live the life you most desire.
I used to have terrible bright shiny object syndrome. I could never stick to a plan or finish anything. There was always something that distracted me and got me off course.
As a result, I rejected routine as the path of mindless drones, doomed to a life of dull, repetitive behaviors.
Then I started reading about super-successful people. And they all had routines.
I started implementing simple routines in my life and discovered they set me free.
Routines are just automated or pre-determined patterns of behavior. Like when Mark Zuckerberg decides to wear only gray t-shirts and jeans. He is automating his wardrobe choice each day.
When you automate certain behaviors you free yourself from having to think about them.
Science shows you have only so much capacity for decision making during the day. If you use it up on mundane choices early in your day, you deplete your ability to make good decisions later on.
Think of it as a point system. You only have, say, 100 points per day for decisions. If you use 5 points on deciding what to eat for lunch, you lose those points you could have used for a money-making decision.
That’s why Mark Zuckerberg wears the same kind of clothes each day. He doesn’t want to waste precious points on what to wear.
I discovered that when I make a routine out of my day, I am able to be creative and productive for an entire day.
My typical workday routine looks like this:
- 5am – get up, get a glass of lemon water, a cup of coffee and a protein muffin. Open my computer and watch a training video or read a business book.
- 6am – work on my top 3 most important tasks for the day
- 8am – breakfast and shower/get dressed, make my bed. Breakfast is always one of two meals. The choice is made the night before.
- 9am – Finish working on top 3 most important tasks for the day
- 10am – check email and answer or add to task list. Work on task list for the day.
- 12pm – workout
- 1:30pm – lunch. I have 3 or 4 different lunches I typically eat and what I’m having is decided the night before.
- 2pm – appointments, calls and finish task list
- 4pm – nap for 30 minutes. Yes, I take naps.
- 4:30pm – check email again and finish up final tasks
- 5:00pm – plan for the next day
- 6:00pm – dinner, family time, friend time, etc.
(Note: I take frequent breaks to walk around and stretch during the day. I also don’t work every day. I alternate in rest days as necessary so I can travel and explore. Also, I don’t have a lot of calls/appointments as I apply the 80/20 rule to people who want my time. That means many days my afternoons are mostly free for friends, family and hobbies.)
When I stick to this routine, life is easy and I get everything done that is important for driving my company forward.
When I deviate from the routine, things get messy and I find myself falling behind and feeling stressed. If I get off track, I go back to my strategic plan and my 80/20 to remind myself what is really important.
How you can use this for yourself:
- Make a list of behaviors you want to incorporate into your life
- Make a list of meals you want to eat
- Set aside a day on your calendar for meal prep
- Take your list of behaviors and organize them by priority
- Put a time frame on each behavior. Match your priorities to your natural energy levels. If you are a morning person, put your highest priority items first in your day. If you are an afternoon or night person, put your highest priority items later in your day.
- Commit to sticking to your routine for one solid week. You can download this free Daily Success Checklist to keep you organized.