Do You Know Your Optimal Routine Zone?

People have certain times of the day that they work best. They get more done and are more focused. For some, they do better in the mornings. For others, afternoons are their most productive. While others still, are night owls and can produce the most during these hours. These productivity times can be considered a person’s optimal routine zone.

What is your optimal routine zone? Are you a morning person or cringe at the thought of getting up early? Do you have vampire blood in you where you do your best work at night?

Whatever you find to be your optimal routine zone, set your tasks to work during these times. Do as much of your work as possible during this optimal zone. Structure your day so that you can accomplish your most challenging tasks at this optimal time.

Working during this optimal time doesn’t mean you should do nothing when you are outside of those zones. Your boss will likely not take too kindly if you slack off. Instead, you should use this time for activities that are not as taxing, such as making phone calls or other non-stressful activities.

Sometimes, you will have no choice but to do more of the heavy lifting during your “off times.” If this happens, you’ll have to make the best of it. Another problem is that you may be working in a job that does not coincide with your optimal zones. That’s a tough situation, and you may have to think about trying to adjust or to move on to opportunities where you can work during your optimal times.

If your job involves being creative, this concept of optimal zones is going to work in your favor. For instance, if you are a writer, try to do most of your writing during these times. You can use the other times to answer emails, post on social media, or check out forums related to your writing. If you are writing for a blog, try writing several posts in your zone and schedule them as if you have written one per day, etc.

Increasing your productivity is knowing your advantages. When you discover what your optimal work zones are, and use them effectively, it follows that you will increase your productivity. Your manager will notice this, and it could help you when asking for a raise or getting a promotion. It will also give you the satisfaction of a more fulfilling job.

Become a Negative-Thinking Turnaround Factory

Negative thoughts bombard your life. They are all over the television. The news or your favorite television shows contain negativity. You face it at work and even at home. You will see enough of it online as well. It invades your life.

What if you could picture your brain as a factory that takes negative thinking as input and processes it to churn out positive thoughts? Perhaps this seems a bit abstract as you are not indeed a factory. But, if you can think in these terms, you may be able to combat the negative thinking.

On your transition to factory status, you need to stop yourself from overreacting to what people say. When someone says something you don’t agree with, take a moment to consider what they are saying. When you get annoyed at others, you stop listening to them and only want to get your point across as to why they are wrong. Instead, after he or she speaks, take a moment and consider what the message is.

The next stage is to try and see the other person’s point of view. If you have a difficult time doing this, calmly ask questions of the person making the statement. You can say that you don’t understand the reason for the statement and would like to know more about why they said it.

You don’t have to agree with the other person, even after you start to process what they say. But, the act of listening and considering their point of view will transform you. You may start to challenge your belief system. Sometimes, you can get so focused on a belief even when the reason why you feel that way has changed. When you start to question your beliefs, you will consider what others have to say more openly. The process will help you turn negative thoughts into positive ones.

Negative thoughts seldom lead to believing in oneself. You will end up challenging what everyone says as wrong if they don’t agree with your way of thinking. You will become bitter towards others and eventually towards yourself. You won’t believe that anything is possible because you shoot down every suggestion. This type of thinking doesn’t make people happy.

When you start to open yourself to others, you will learn more and be accepting of different beliefs. You will become enlightened when this happens.

Learn How to Make Mistakes

A big reason why you don’t trust yourself is you are afraid to make mistakes. It’s a common situation for many people. However, it could be holding you back in your success. When you learn how to make mistakes, you will be ready to start trusting yourself.

You may have heard people say that nobody is perfect. You should make it a rule to live by because it’s a true statement. When you make mistakes, you learn from them. That is what makes them so valuable. Of course, if you don’t learn from them, you will be doomed to making the same mistakes repeatedly. That’s why you have to do a post-mortem of your actions and evaluate where you made your mistakes.

If you try too hard to avoid mistakes, you end up making more of them. That is because no one is perfect. You simply cannot avoid mistakes and you shouldn’t.

Sometimes, the mistakes that you make will make people angry with you. It’s a part of life. If this happens, you first have to determine if your mistakes truly affected those people. If it didn’t, they have no right to call you out on them. If it turns out that your actions did affect them, do what you can to rectify the situation. A simple apology may be all that is needed.

Just as you would like others to forgive you when you make mistakes, be forgiving of others when they make mistakes, and it affects you. It’s not fair to expect others to forgive you if you aren’t willing to do the same. It’s okay to get angry in certain situations. But, open your heart and let them make amends.

Once you give in to making mistakes, you will find it a freeing experience. You will no longer need to put too much pressure on yourself to avoid them. Another factor to consider is that mistakes can lead to positive unintended circumstances. Just look at sticky notes by 3M. The researchers at the company set out to create a strong adhesive that resulted in a weak one. Someone at the company took the idea and used it to create the sticky notes product. There have been many instances of mistakes that lead to alternative solutions. These would not have happened if they were trying to avoid the mistakes.

Permit yourself to make mistakes which will help you to trust yourself.

Being Appreciative Can Lower Your Stress

Did you know that when you appreciate the small items in your life, you are less likely to be stressed out? It makes sense when you think about it. People who are high-strung will get upset about every little item. They don’t appreciate these aspects, and it causes them to blow up at every opportunity they get.

Contrast this with people who appreciate the small things. They aren’t going to let little situations bother them. In fact, it’s those little things that they learn to enjoy and embrace. For instance, at work suppose there is a problem with the shipment of an order.

The high-strung individual is going to blow things out of proportion and yell at everyone to get it fixed. The appreciative person is going to calmly figure out how to solve the problem and work with people to make the situation right. They will also think it’s not that big of a deal and is happy to have the job they have.

Who would you rather associate with, the high-strung person who doesn’t appreciate anything or the person that appreciates everything? It’s likely you chose the appreciative person. This person will also be able to handle major issues since he or she is at ease handling the minor ones.

It is true that appreciative people have lower stress than people who are not. However, this is not a way to reduce stress completely. Appreciative people still need to eat correctly and exercise well. These people are probably already doing that because they love life and want to prolong it. Even if there is room for improvement in that area, appreciative people will quickly adapt because they have the right attitude.

If you are hot-headed about every little item, it’s time to reevaluate this stance. Be grateful for what you have and who you have. When you take the time to be grateful, you will start to relax as a byproduct of this change. You’ll stop jumping to conclusions, and you’ll look for ways to solve problems in a relaxed manner.

You can also use exercise and relaxation techniques such as meditation and massage. Keep trying different ways to relax but above all, be appreciative of your entire life. Others will be attracted towards you as they key off your positive energy. They will also be more willing to follow your lead.

Life Coaches Can Help You Deal with Adversity

When you discover a good life coach, they can help you with several aspects of your life. They will show you methods to overcome aspects of your life that are holding you back. They can also help you when you face adverse situations and can give you the guidance you need to help you pick up the pieces and get back on track.

They may start by teaching you to be positive and use techniques such as affirmations to retrain your brain to think positive thoughts. That is one of the biggest means to deal with adverse situations. It won’t prevent you from dealing with them, but it will help you focus on what is important.

You need to practice these affirmations for them to be effective. It’s not a casual exercise that you do whenever the mood strikes. Make it a daily habit. Your mentor will know if you are not practicing them.

Prepare for your life coach to be truthful. The truth hurts, but it may be what you need to get past your situation. When you get caught up in blaming others and not taking responsibility, they will be quick to point this out to you. A good coach will present it in such a way that you will come to the conclusions yourself. And that makes it easier for you to accept and counter the action.

When you decide to use a life coach, don’t blame them if it doesn’t work out. That is, of course, assuming you chose a qualified coach. It’s not difficult to find a good coach if you take the right steps. Ask friends and family. Do a bit of digging to learn about their background.

Coaches are going to encourage you to step outside your comfort zone. Most coaches will use this to help the people they coach break away from bad habits and form new ones. It is called a comfort zone for a reason. It will be awkward, and at times, you may get angry at their suggestions.

If the adversity you are dealing with is from the result of a traumatic experience, a life coach may not be qualified to handle such a deep situation. In this case, seek out a professional who has qualified in that area. You can still choose to use the life coach for other aspects of your development.

Stop Relying Too Much on Others

If you have difficulty trusting yourself, the problem may be that you are too dependent on others. When this happens, you tend to let the situation grow and become further dependent on more and more people. That presents a problem when called upon to handle situations on your own.

Have you ever let someone else take over a part of your job? While you may feel a temporary relief when this happens, you could be setting yourself up for future failure. The reason why it happened is that you didn’t trust that you could do the job yourself.

The above scenario often happens when you are asked to do something outside of your comfort zone. Perhaps, your boss wants to test how you will handle a situation that is new. He or she gives you an assignment knowing that you have never dealt with it before.

It’s natural to ask others for help when you find yourself in unfamiliar territory. There is nothing wrong with doing this. However, if you simply let others solve the problems or handle the situations for you, you cannot grow from this. You will never develop the trust in yourself to handle new situations. Your manager will see that you, in essence, passed the assignment onto someone else, whether directly or indirectly. Your manager will not look kindly on this development.

When presented with something that you haven’t experienced before, maintain a positive attitude. Always be willing to try even if you make mistakes. The mistakes are the tools for you to learn. When you do make those mistakes, ask what you did wrong. Over time, those mistakes will get less and less, and you will begin to trust that you can handle the situations.

A subtle consequence will result from trying something new. You will prove that you can handle new tasks and develop new skills. That is enlightening and is a big factor in developing trust in yourself.

Every skill you are now good at and find easy you probably struggled with at the start. If you keep this in mind, you will give yourself over to trusting that you can handle anything that comes your way. You won’t need to rely on others as much. You still should ask questions when you are unsure about something. That is another part of how you learn. Some people may give you a hard time because it’s inconvenient. But, you will find most people want to help you succeed. It helps them when you get up to speed with new skills.

Teaching Kids About Routine Through Chores

When you assign chores to kids, you’ll probably hear some moaning and groaning. You may even decide to tie their chores with an allowance. They will be happy on payday, but not so much when they are expected to do work for the money.

Giving your kids chores teaches them much more than getting paid for work done. In many cases, they need to follow steps to perform the chores.

If the kids are responsible for mowing the lawn, for example, they will need to check the oil on the mower, check to make sure there is gas, and then go through the motions to start it up. If they are required to do the weed whacking as well, they will need to learn that comes first.

Kids will also learn they have to do their chores on a regular basis. This routine instills in them the idea of a work ethic. Sticking with the mowing example, the kids will most likely have to do this once per week.

Even tasks that are seemingly easy and don’t require a routine, still require your kids to go through a process. For instance, if the kids need to load and run the dishwasher, they will first need to rinse some of the dirty dishes first. Then, they need to figure out how to load the plates efficiently enough so that they all fit and won’t break inside the machine. Then, they load the soap dispenser and turn on the machine. It’s a process just like any other.

Oddly enough, video games can teach kids about how to use routines to their benefit. Many of the games require them to go through certain sequences and steps to advance to the next round. They will need to learn these steps to keep the game fun and interesting. Video games are not all bad.

When kids play sports in school, they are subjected to drills by the coaches. These drills are meant to teach them the techniques needed to win games. These drills can be considered routines. They are meant to help the kids use the skills when they are playing the game. The more they do the drills, the less they will need to think about what to do when they start playing.

The routines kids learn from their chores will carry through to their adult life. When they start their working life, they will be well versed in processes and routines.

Setting Your Daily Routine

Who doesn’t love a bit of spontaneity on occasion? It helps to mix things up and keeps life interesting. However, too much spontaneity can lead to an unstructured way of life. Some people love that, but most find would find that difficult to maintain.

For starters, enough sleep is important to function properly. If you don’t have a routine, it’s not likely you will get the right amount of sleep every night. Your body needs to have its internal clock set to the same sleep habits. If you refuse to develop those habits, you will find it difficult to go to sleep at night, and you will find that you wake up frequently during the night.

To help you get to sleep faster, make sure you go to bed at the same time every night and get up at the same time in the morning. Try to avoid drinking too much alcohol as this will disrupt your sleep. You may fall asleep easier, but you will not go into a deep sleep. That deep sleep interrupts your internal rhythm, and you may not be able to fall back to sleep.

Try to limit the use of electronic devices before you go to bed. There are studies suggesting devices such as laptops and tablets, stimulate your visual senses, making it difficult to sleep.

You should have a routine for your diet, too. If you don’t set up the right diet and eat at the same time daily, you will likely have digestion issues. You may also struggle with weight issues because your body won’t know how to regulate based on your erratic schedule.

An article about routines would be incomplete if it didn’t cover getting exercise. Exercise is also the one element where many people have a problem being consistent. However, a routine here has been shown to help people deal with stress, and it can help them sleep easier. You don’t have to incorporate intense exercise. If you walk consistently every day or every other day, that will do wonders for your exercise requirements.

You should find the routines that work for you, and work hard to stick with them. Routines are habits, and it takes some effort to develop habits to the point where you don’t even think about them. There is room for some spontaneous activity which everyone needs once-in-a-while. Don’t try to make major changes all at once. Small changes are best as it’s easier to succeed with them.

The Perils of Self-Doubt

Have you ever doubted yourself? Perhaps that seems like a silly question as most people have doubted themselves at some point in their lives. But, many people continue to doubt themselves, and this can be a major contributor in holding them back towards success.

Why do people engage in self-doubt? The reason is that it is easier to doubt yourself than it is to believe that something is possible. When you believe in your concept, it is something that hasn’t materialized yet. It is unfamiliar territory for you. Our protection mechanisms tell us to reach for something that is familiar. We use this as a reason to quit.

The unknown also helps us to come up with excuses. It’s easy to say it won’t work because, and then insert whatever reason can set your mind at ease. You can even find help from others in coming up with excuses. They have plenty of them for you to choose. If they didn’t, they would be succeeding at their goals.

Sometimes self-doubt can help us survive. For instance, if you someone said that you could jump off a high cliff and not get killed, your self-doubt will reassure you that this is a bad idea. Self-doubt can also sometimes guide you to not get into something unnecessarily, like a business opportunity that sounds too good to be true, etc.

In most cases, self-doubt is not something that will advance your life. It will hold you back, and you need always to be aware of that. Don’t take the easy way out. Do prepare yourself as much as possible for the unfamiliar situations. But, go forward with a strong belief that you can accomplish what you set out to do.

Try to structure your life so that you have more positive than negative energy. Use affirmations, support groups, or whatever works to flush out as much negative energy as possible. Negative energy is what self-doubt is all about. The two forces are opposing each other. If you have 100% negative energy that means you have 0% positive energy. Therefore, try to tip the scale to as much positivity as possible and push away the negativity.

The world is full of negative energy. It’s unlikely that you can ever have 100% positive energy. But, you can work towards exposing yourself to positive energy. You can stop listening or reading the news, and you can reduce your exposure to negative people. Positive people do exist. You just need to find them.

Taking a Leap of Faith for Your Business

You have just started a new business, and you are excited. You no longer need to work for someone else. You’re on your own. You’re the boss. Even your spouse is excited that you are doing something you have wanted to do. Then, a few months pass, and you haven’t made a dime in your business.

Suddenly, you feel the stress of business ownership. Suppliers are calling asking for their money. You have already dwindled a good portion of your savings into the spending for your business. Your spouse is less confident, and your friends are all telling you to throw in the towel. They are saying that you gave it your best shot, but it’s time to find a regular job.

Many would follow this advice and let the business fold. However, people who make it in business stick it out for one reason – they believe in what they are doing. They know that the concept will eventually work. They just need to stick it out. It’s this resolve that allows them to succeed.

Of course, just putting in the time and doing busy work is not going to advance your business. You need to have a solid foundation at the start. You should set up a roadmap or business plan that answers questions about how you will make your business work. You should treat this process as though you are going to raise venture capital funds, even if you aren’t. Try to put yourself in the position of a venture capital entrepreneur and ask tough questions of yourself for your business.

Consider making an alternate plan in case your main plan falls short of your goals. You might fail for any number of reasons and having a backup plan is a wise move to counter any problems.

Once your foundation is in place, you simply need to take a leap of faith and believe that you can make it work. If anyone challenges you, such as your spouse or your friends, you can have the conviction to see it through because you believe in yourself. There is no guarantee that you will succeed. However, there is a guarantee that you won’t succeed if you give up too soon. Often, success is right around the corner for those who have that conviction and are willing to continue despite all the challenges they face. You can be one of the few who makes it if you choose to take this route.

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