The Action Mindset

The Action Mindset

While watching some motivational videos on YouTube, I came across a simple idea that was echoed across several different creators, all of which were videos on motivation and productivity, but not necessarily the exact same specific topic. They all spoke of this action mindset where the most important thing is that you act on the impulse to do something. You need to make sure these acts are ones of productivity or moves towards your goals but the second you feel that little impulse you’ve got to act now.

Mel Robbins, Author of the 5 second rule, also echoes this thought. You’ve got about 5 seconds to act on your impulse before your mind will start talking you out of it. When your alarm goes off, if you don’t jump out of bed in those first 5 seconds, you’re not getting out of bed and you’ll hit snooze.

A helpful hint that seems to be key to this action mindset is to commit to a very small increment of time. If your goal is to practice guitar more, make a promise to play for 15 minutes per day and actually do it. The idea isn’t that you only need 15 minutes of practice per day to become a rock god, but it’s much easier to start when you know it’s a very small increment of time you’ve committed to. Likely, you’ll end up spending more than those 15 minutes practicing anyway. The same goes for running. If you want to start running more, just commit to ten minutes of running or going around the block. You’ll likely run farther now that you’ve made the effort to leave the house, but even if you only ran for ten minutes, that’s ten minutes you’ve got in the bag.

For myself, I’ve been wanting to start meditating daily, but i fall into the trap of telling myself that i don’t always have the time, or that i could be spending my time better than just sitting on the floor meditating. When i stopped to think about it though, a typical meditation session for me can be anywhere from 5-20 minutes and the guided meditations I like tend to only run about 10 minutes at most. It’s been much easier for me to tell myself that I can afford to spend ten minutes a day on something to will help me be in a better mindset throughout the day. Putting this idea into practice has already made a huge difference in my daily productivity and I find I feel more accomplished at the end of the day because I find I actually start more tasks because I genuinely feel I have the time to start.

Image from twipu.com

The most important thing is to just start, which can feel impossible sometimes because it’s not always clear how to start. If you want to become a musician, it’s fairly straight forward, you have to start playing. If you want to become a photographer, you’ve got to pick up a camera and start shooting or learning how to use the settings on your camera. I really like the quote from Nick Sommers which is ” If you knew success was a certainty, what would you attempt to do?”. As someone who’s always in my head and trying to plan everything before even beginning to start, I often don’t actually put those ideas into action, this could be a fear of failure or just a fear of the unknown. We can get in our own way by simply wanting to think about every little potential problem before we even begin, but this will keep us from ever doing anything. Thinking about writing a book won’t get your book written, planning a video won’t get that video made. Of course planning is a helpful step, but your first step should be to start. No matter how bad the attempt is, you’re already closer to your desired end product by simply starting.

Image from quotefancy.com

How To Go On A Social Media Detox

How To Go On A Social Media Detox

If you’re like me, you may have started to notice you spend an awful lot of time online and on your phone. For some people being on social media is a very hard habit to kick. I’m not suggesting getting rid of social media entirely, (I love Instagram way too much for that!) But sometimes it’s good to take a break. It’s well known the negative impacts social media can have on our mental health and how we view ourselves, so why not take a little break every now and then and come back in a clearer head space?

I’ll be honest, I had absolutely no intention of stopping my social media usage until a friend of mine suggested we both go one full month without logging on to any social media sites. The idea wasn’t to avoid the internet all together but to stay off sites like Facebook ,Instagram , Twitter, Reddit, etc. When I would check the screen time app on my iPhone, it routinely told me I had spent over eight hours per day on my phone, yikes!

So how do you start a social media detox of your own?

  1. Delete the apps

Most of the time we aren’t even aware that we’ve clicked on the app before it’s too late and we’ve been scrolling through our feeds for who knows how long. I myself find I’m constantly flipping through apps without even noticing. If you delete the app off your phone you don’t have to worry about accidentally clicking on it and ruining your progress. This also holds you more accountable if you do decide to go back on the app, you have to physically download it again and sign back in. Deleting the app gets rid of some of the temptation but you’ll be surprised how much you still go to click on it even when it’s not there.

2. Try to spend more time off your phone or computer so you’re not thinking about the things you might be missing online.

FOMO is real! During the first few days of deleting my Instagram I could feel myself worrying about if I was missing out on information or photos of my friends. I still used my phone quite regularly and it make things really difficult. I realized that I spend more time on my phone in general than I was comfortable with, So along with not being on social media I found it helpful to spend minimal amounts of time on my phone as well. I didn’t avoid my phone at all, especially since it’s my only means of communication right now, but I made the effort to intentionally put it down in a different room and only come back to check on it periodically. The difference this made for my day to day life has been huge.

3. Do the things you’ve been meaning to do that you normally don’t have time for.

Without my phone to slow me down, I’ve found a very large chunk of time I have to be productive. I’ve been able to do all my errands that I leave myself for the week in only a day or two, leaving me with several hours per day I can spend on whatever I want. It felt really boring at first as I had absolutely no idea what to do with myself, I essentially gained six hours per day of free time! Crazy I know. This has allowed me to spend more time outside and I’ve been able to spend much more time on personal projects like reading and music.

Those are some of my tips for a social media detox. I’m only about half way through my one month, so i’ll be sure to update once I’ve actually completed it. Have you done a social media detox? How did you feel after? or are you planning to do a detox? Tell me everything in the comments below!

My productive morning routine

I’m a morning person by nature. I grew up in a household of morning people so I really didn’t have much of a choice in the matter. Mornings offer you something no other time of day can; a fresh start. Once you open your eyes it’s the beginning of a new day full of new possibilities and the chance to do things differently than yesterday. Although I myself am a morning person, most of the people in my friend circle and my co-workers are not. They look at me like I’ve grown a second head when I tell them I wake up at 6 AM by choice. The night owls in my life tell me they could never imagine getting up early and actually enjoying it. I’ll let you in on a secret though, anyone can become a morning person with the right habits. This isn’t to say being a morning person is better than being a night owl, far from actually. I believe we all have a preferred time of day and for me, that’s morning. Unfortunately sometimes our lives don’t line up with how our ideal day would play out which is why I’m sharing with you how I manage my mornings to show you how you can also become a morning person.

Get enough sleep

Getting enough sleep is probably the number one thing people struggle with on a daily basis. For many years I struggled with insomnia and getting any sleep at all was a victory most nights. The average adult needs 7-9 hours of sleep per night. This can be a tricky feat if you’re waiting until late at night to get work done or studying out of the way. I have found the most success when I go to bed early, preferably around 10 PM so that I can wake up at 6 AM the next morning. I know what you’re thinking, that’s way too early to go to bed! It might seem like it at first but once you start getting up early you’ll find you have just as much time in the day as you did when you stayed up late. For anyone who isn’t used to getting to bed early i recommend going to bed a half hour earlier each night until you get yourself to bed at a time that works best for you.

Don’t Snooze!

This is a trick I learned from Mel Robbins in her book The 5 Second Rule. From the time your alarm starts going off you have about 5 seconds to act before you’re just not going to get out of bed. Of all the times I’ve hit the snooze button, there’s very few that left me actually feeling well rested compared to when the alarm first went off. If you’re a serial snoozer like I am, the best advice I can give is to get that alarm as far away from your bed as possible. If you have to physically get out of bed to turn your alarm off you’re much more likely to just stay up. For those of you who need your phone near you in cases of emergency or to listen to something to help you sleep, I highly suggest investing in an alarm clock and no longer setting alarms on your phone. You’d be amazed how much time you can waste in day just hitting the snooze button over and over, never actually feeling any more rested. If you’re interested in learning more about Mel’s 5 Second Rule which works with way more than just your alarm, you can find it here.

Get Dressed

There’s something about getting dressed that signals to your brain that now it’s time to wake up and get things done. Typically I will lay my clothes out the night before so I don’t have to try and come up with an outfit idea when my brain is still half asleep. This also helps me come up with cute outfits without having to do all the trial and error because I’ve already done that the night before. Even if you don’t plan on going out anywhere, putting on comfy clothes that aren’t pajamas will still do the trick.

Breakfast

You know what they say, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. After 8 hours of sleep your body is going to be severely dehydrated and hungry. After you get dressed it’s time to give your brain some fuel. You’re not going to get your best work done if you’re running on empty. I like to start with some water while I’m making my breakfast which usually consists of bacon and eggs or oatmeal. Your breakfast doesn’t need to be complicated or Instagram worthy as long as it’s giving your body some nutrients. This way you’ll avoid getting “hangry” before lunch and you’ll be able to focus on the task at hand.

Set up your work space

Now that you’re all fueled up, it’s time to start thinking about doing some work. For me, this is when I grab my computer from the bedroom and set it up in my dining room. This is a place where I know I can sit down and do work without any distractions like TV. There’s lots of light coming through the windows which helps me feel more alert while I work. After I’ve got my computer set up I’ll throw on a playlist that helps me focus and stay motivated. I try for more mellow playlists and ones that play songs I don’t know the words to so I can focus on the task at hand. After my desk and music are set up, this is when I’ll take the time to make a cup of tea or coffee to keep with me while I work. You want to make the experience as enjoyable as possible, after all doing work really isn’t a punishment and you’ll feel amazing once you’ve got a few tasks knocked off your list!

Review your tasks

If you read my other post on productivity you’ll know I’m a firm believer in writing out your to-do list the night before. Ideally in this step you will have the to-do list you made the night before sitting in front of you. This is the time I take to re-assess what I’d like to get done today and the order in which I think it makes most sense to complete the tasks. I suggest getting the most difficult task out of the way first if you can. Once you get the tough job out of the way everything else feels like a walk in the park. This way even if you only manage to get one thing checked off your list you’ll feel a huge sense of relief.

Now it’s time to get to work! I hope this gave you some ideas on how you can use the morning to increase your productivity and have some fun while you’re at it. Remember to take some breaks and celebrate the little victories as you go. How do you stay productive? and are you a morning person or a night owl? let me know in the comments.