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Category: Routines

How to Make a Morning Routine

How to Make a Morning Routine

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Mornings can be hard, for everyone, even those of us who like to wake up early. We can stumble around in the morning putting out fires as we go and just barely making it through the rest of our day. A bad morning can change our whole day. There is a cure for this and it’s called a morning routine! In this post, I’ll go through the steps to making a morning routine that will work for you.

What Things Can Happen The Night Before?

Last week, I made a post about How to Make an Evening Routine. There is a reason that it came first. There are so many things that you can do the night before to make your morning easier. A few of those are setting clothes out for the next day or planning your breakfast. It depends on what will make your morning easier. Make a list of things that tend to throw you off in the morning and see if any of them can be done the night before.

What Are The Most Important Things?

This question goes two-fold. One is the things you need to do in the morning and the other is the things that are truly important to you. Ask yourself what your important things are. Make a list of all the things that have to happen. I need a shower every morning; it’s my number one priority. Then make a list of the important things in your life. For me, having time to eat breakfast and relax before my day begins is important. For you, it might be quiet time before your kids get up.

What Are the Least Important Things?

Maybe it’s your season of life or your priorities, but there are things that simply aren’t important to do right now. Take those things out of your morning routine. It might be to move them to a different part of your day or it’s a bad habit that shouldn’t be in your life anyways. If you are a parent of little children, having time to read might be something to plan for when they take their nap, not in the morning when they wake up early. You might have the tendency to snooze your alarm a lot. Working on a way to limit this is an important part of the routine.

Create a Realistic Morning Routine

Write out the typical routine that you are doing right now. Use the things you’ve just read to either alter your routine or make a completely new one. Move the appropriate things to your nighttime routine, star the things that need to happen every morning even if you are running late, and evaluate anything that doesn’t need to be there anymore. I can’t tell you the right routine to make, but think about how you work and what you will be willing to do. The point of this is to make a routine completely unique to you.

Be Gentle

This is a rundown of my current routine. I know that I need to have simple mornings and trying to do a lot of intense things right away is only going to make me resentful. I get my tea and breakfast ready the morning before and since I work from home, setting out my clothes isn’t necessary (though it might be for you.) Remember that this is the first draft. If you are noticing that the routine isn’t working, go ahead and tweak it. And if you fall off the wagon, don’t be too hard on yourself. You are never going to be perfect, you can only do your best.

If you want a more in-depth way to create a morning routine, please check out Crystal Paine’s Make Over Your Mornings course. I loved the course and it informed this post. Tell me how your routine benefits you! What are some ways you have improved your mornings? What secrets do you have to combat hard mornings?

How I Schedule My Day as a Virtual Assistant

How I Schedule My Day as a Virtual Assistant

One of the joys of being a virtual assistant is that I don’t have a boss. There is no one looking over my shoulder as I go about my days, I’m in charge of my own time. I’m going to tell you the way I spend my days as a virtual assistant.

Morning

I’m usually out of bed by 8:00. I’ll usually shower, eat breakfast, and plan out my day. I use three things to structure my day. First, I look at my to-dos in my OmniFocus. Then I add the things I want to get done into my bullet journal so I can see them all on one page. Then I use Google Calendar to map out how long I want things to take throughout my day. This also reminds me of any appointments I might have. Usually, this step takes me about 10 to 15 minutes.

Business Work

I use the first hour of my day, from 9-10, to work on my own business. I’m still in the process of finding clients, so it’s important I prioritize this, which is why it’s the first thing in my day. I usually check my email and send any emails I need to. I also source clients and brainstorm improvements I can make to my current business plan. Once I have the number of clients I want, I’ll move this to later in the day or make it fewer days in the week. Until then, it will continue to be in the most important slot in my day.

Client Work

I then do client work. The duration of this is different every day depending on what I currently need to accomplish for my clients and potential clients. It’s hard to generalize since each day is different, but I prioritize based on deadlines and work hard during my client’s time. I want to get the most amount of work done while I’m on their dime.

Other Work

During the remaining part of the day, I get my odds and ends done. I usually spend time working on my proofreading course and on this blog. I also babysit three days a week, so I spend time with a baby most afternoons. These odds and ends are less important to get done, so I put them later in the day.

Fun

Around 4 or 5 I usually complete my day and then I can do things purely because I like them (though I do enjoy my job quite a bit.) Usually, that means crocheting in front of the TV (the show I’m watching right now is NCIS.) I also enjoy baking and hanging out with my friends. It’s whatever I want to do. Since I don’t have set hours in an office, I need to make sure I’m not always hustling and have time to relax.

Nightime

I start my bedtime routine around 9:00. I have a pretty strict evening routine. I shut down my computer, tidy my house, layout my breakfast for the morning, and brush my teeth. I usually get to sleep around 10 or 11. I know that I need a lot of sleep so I try to get to bed as early as I can.

This is a general idea for my day. Every day is a little different and I can bend this day however I need to, would like, which is one of the greatest perks of being a virtual assistant. If becoming a virtual assistant is something you want to look into check out this article by Gina Horkey. If you have any questions, just leave a comment. I always respond.

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10 Things That Make Me Happy Right Now

10 Things That Make Me Happy Right Now

Sometimes, things get hard. We get lost in the things we have to do and how much time we have left to do them. It’s tough when things don’t go the way we expect. I invite you to put those things aside and let yourself have a quiet moment to think of ten things that make you happy right now. Here are the ten I came up with.

  1. My Cat Hazel
  2. Birds on my Feeder
  3. Hiking
  4. Crocheting
  5. Axel
  6. Reading Helpful Blogs
  7. Ed Sheeran Pandora Radio
  8. Podcasts (my favorite podcast is My Favorite Murder)
  9. Running
  10. Plants

Even this little activity can help you to remember that everything in life isn’t hard and not everything is life makes you mad either. Some things are just there to make you happy.

What is your list of ten?

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4 Reasons to Set Goals for Yourself

4 Reasons to Set Goals for Yourself

I have a lot of goals in my life. Some are related to being a virtual assistant others are related to this blog and still others are in my personal life. I am a very goal orientated person. Not everyone is this way, and for a while, I wasn’t either. Having dreams and plans doesn’t mean they are going to be accomplished; I realized that I needed goals in place to help me stay on the path to all I wanted to do. Not everyone has gotten to the point where they realize they need to make real and actionable goals. Here are a few reasons why you should.


Goals Give You Direction

I know that when I think of all the things I want to get done in my life I go into panic mode. There are so many things I would like to accomplish and simply not enough time to get them done, at least not all at once. Setting up specific and actionable goals for yourself fights this feeling of panic. You have a list of the goals you want to concentrate on and, hopefully, a plan to get them done.

Helps You Plan

By writing down the goals you want to concentrate on, you are creating a plan. It may be as simple as when you feel like working on one of them, you do. It could also be as complicated as writing very specific steps to accomplishing those goals. It doesn’t matter which end of this spectrum you fall closest to, it matters that you can see the end goal and you work towards it. It’s one of the great things about creating goals and accomplishing them.

Moves You to a Better Life

Goals often start out as dreams. They can be little or large, but they are something you want to accomplish to make your life better. This is a huge motivator and can push you to devote more time to the goals that are most important in this stage of your life.

Shows You What is Important

The best thing that goal setting can do is show you the most important things in your life. By sifting through all the things you want to be doing and picking just a few to work on at the moment, you are showing yourself what is truly a priority in your life. I know that is something that always makes me feel better.

Achieving a lot of the things you want in life is completely possible. I won’t lie and say that I don’t have days where I feel crushed by the huge number goals I have, but I do feel more grounded when I can look at my goals and know which ones I’m concentrating on. Take some time today to think of what’s attainable for you now and what you want to work towards.

 

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