Does your daily routine feel like a grind? If so, it may be time to take a step back and look at things from a new perspective. Some creatives call this "checking your mental hygiene" (think of it as giving your mind a quick cleanse).
Our lives are most fulfilling when we feel passionate about our work and find pleasure in simple things. Here are five empowering routines used by the happiest and most productive people:
When you have to buckle down and get work done, block out a few hours and schedule it on your calendar. Before you start, free yourself from distraction by starting motivation ritual, such as enjoying coffee with classical music or an energizing smoothie. Waking up before sunrise to attack projects is another common motivator that successful people use. Find a ritual that makes you feel inspired.
When our work is appreciated, we work harder. At the end of a long day, acknowledge a triumph – even if it is a small one. Write down what you did well or something you learned that day. The path to high achievement is made one step at a time. Tracking your progress is an excellent way to maintain a healthy perspective.
Don't hole yourself in a corner office the entire day. Make sure you get some fresh air — have a refreshing drink or take your dog out for a walk. A good walk can conjure creative energy or give us mental rest. Experiencing a brief change of environment can positively influence our mental health. Often, when we are the least focused on a problem, the solution will suddenly come to us while we are doing something else.
When we appreciate how much the little tasks contribute to the big picture, we value these tasks differently. Knowing how the smallest actions will assist a larger goal makes doing those small things more enjoyable. There is a difference between doing something because it has to be done and doing something because you recognize the significance.
A good night's rest can bring clarity and give us more mental agility to solve problems and pursue creative solutions. Each time Thomas Edison encountered a problem, he would famously roll a few marbles in his hand as he nodded off in a chair. When he started to fall asleep, the marbles would fall out of his hands and onto a tin sheet that would wake him up. He claims that some of his most genius ideas came to him in this way. Sleep is a powerful tool. There's a reason why people use the phrase, "Sleep on it."
While it is easy to be critical of ourselves, we need to appreciate the hard work we do and the positive impact it has. When we are passionate about our daily pursuits and set aside time to stretch our creative muscles, we can experience more fulfillment. If you identify your motivating triggers, appreciate little tasks and take a long walk, you will be amazed by all the great ideas that come to you.
Elle Kaplan is the founder and CEO of LexION Capital, a fiduciary wealth management firm in New York City serving high-net-worth individuals. She is also the chief investment officer and founder of LexION Alpha.
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