If you want to be successful in life, you cannot be unhappy and unhealthy every day. Working all day is possible, but if you can’t enjoy it, you will burn out and break down eventually. Even if you do enjoy it, there’s only so much your body can take. But this body is all you have, so treat it well – only then will it carry you to success and further, so you can live your life on your terms.
This post contains material from my book 20 Habits to be a Superwoman – you can check it out if you want more.
Waking up consistently
“You’ve got to get up every morning with determination if you’re going to go to bed with satisfaction.” – George Lorimer
Waking up consistently (and earlier), especially if combined with a morning ritual, can drastically improve your life. Not just your productivity, but your overall well-being and happiness, too! And if you have sleep problems, even those might get better.
Our bodies rely on schedules. The sun goes up every day at (about) the same time, which used to be an anchor for our internal clock. But if you get up at different times every day and sleep in often, it’s confusing your body.
Don’t worry – I’m not saying you have to go from getting up at 10 am to getting up at 5 am, run for an hour, meditate, do yoga, drink 10 liters of water and work for six hours before breakfast at 7 am.
If you have to get up at a certain time every day to go to work, that’s good. But do you really, or is the snooze button your best friend in the morning? Because guess what, that little button is the devil. If you can barely drag yourself out of bed every morning, start by setting a time a little earlier than necessary. If you have to get up at 7:40 or you’ll be late, set the alarm to 7:30 and disable the snooze button.
It’s hard at first, I know. In the beginning, I used to lie there and wonder if it’s all worth it. You have to push through that and just get up. After a week or two, you’ll notice that it becomes easier, over time even natural.
If you also go to bed at about the same time every day, your quality of sleep will improve because of this consistency, so you won’t even be as tired anymore. Make sure to sleep 8 hours every night whenever possible, and you’ll be full of energy and focus every morning.
Over time, you can even begin waking up a bit earlier to get something done in the morning. I found that I’m actually more focused and productive now that I get up earlier than I used to. I love the feeling of having worked for an hour and finishing my workout by the time I usually got up. Overall, I certainly get more work done and sleep better every day. But yeah, dragging myself out of bed and into the shower is still hard.
You know the feeling when you just don’t have any energy the whole day? I had this quite often. Getting up earlier has actually improved this, too. When possible, I used to sleep and stay in bed until I felt well rested. I usually was tired again in early afternoon. Now I get up even if I feel tired as hell, but once I’m fully awake, I feel full of energy until the evening.
If possible, apply the consistent sleep schedule on weekends, too. Not necessarily at the same time, but get up without sleeping in or snoozing the alarm for three hours. Set your alarm to whatever time you need, but get up at that time.
The important thing is staying consistent, with a clear rule when you get up. That helps your body anchor its circadian rhythm. Basically, our bodies follow a rhythm that affects everything from how we feel, our metabolism and even our hormones. Getting up at regular times improves our body’s ability to function by anchoring it in such a rhythm instead of working against it. It also helps your mind be focused and sharp. Starting the day with an act of succeeding over your desire to sleep in. Start the day proving yourself and the world that you are stronger than that.
Your Action Plan
To start building this habit, you need to find a time that you can get up at every day. Don’t attempt getting up at 7:00 if you’ve been sleeping in until noon every day – start small. Pick a time and stick to it. Every weekday, you get up at this time. Partied late the day before? Tough luck, girl, get up!
This will help you build consistency and discipline as well as anchoring you to that routine. Once it becomes a habit, you can start getting up earlier.
Additionally, going to sleep at about the same time every day makes it easier to get consistent sleep. If you get up at 7:00 every morning, going to bed between 11:00 pm and 12:00 am makes it a lot easier to get up than going to bed between 10:00 pm and 3:00 am!
“Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.” – Mother Teresa
A genuine smile has so many benefits, it’s hard to list them all. Before I even get to the benefits in professional and personal life, I want to start with what’s most important: Smiling makes you happy.
Simply the act of smiling – whether you have something to smile about or not – makes your brain release dopamine, endorphins, and serotonin, the hormones that make you happy. It can also lower your heart rate and decrease blood pressure. All of that by simply smiling.
Additionally, if someone smiles at you, your orbitofrontal cortex is activated, which is responsible for feeling good and rewarded. We also tend to mimic the emotions of those around us, especially of those looking directly at us. So if someone smiles at you and you automatically smile back, it’s like an espresso shot of good mood for the brain.
By smiling, you make yourself feel good and put your body in a positive state, but at the same time, make other’s feel good, too. Not only does that improve all kinds of personal relations (relationships, friendships, professional relationships, even interactions with strangers), it also makes you more interesting and attractive both for dating-related topics and for a professional impression. People who (genuinely) smile a lot are usually considered more friendly and open, but also more intelligent, confident and more successful. Remember to smile a lot if you ever apply for a job again! (Just try not to overdo it and look creepy…)
Smiling whenever you can is a great habit to pick up that will become completely natural to you. Not only will it make you happier, but it directly improves your interaction with other people and how much those people like, trust, respect, and value you.
Of course, only smiling is not quite enough. That friendliness should be backed up by how you talk to people and interact with people. Simply greeting people with a warm smile when they walk into the room or talking positively instead of negatively reinforces that friendly impression. If you spread positivity with both your smile and behavior, you will be the lighthouse of happiness in other people’s life and doors of opportunity will open for you wherever you go.
Your Action Plan
Start small: Whenever you feel stressed out or sad, find a quiet place where you can just smile for 30 seconds. You might feel like an idiot, so find a place where no one sees you.
Then, start smiling intentionally whenever something nice happens – even something as simple as walking outside on a beautiful day. Pay attention to nice things and smile.
Then, begin smiling more at other people – whenever you greet someone, for example. Make it a habit to smile and laugh, and you will spread good mood wherever you go.
These are just two of 20 Habits that will transform your life and make you happier, healthier and more successful! If you want to know more, check out 20 Habits to be a Superwoman.