Talking with some of my students this week about the importance of written reflection, I discussed a reflective activity I originally picked up from Braid Creative that had a great effect on my work rhythm. Not one for airy concepts or diary entries, I started jotting down my ideal day with a hefty dose of skepticism, but documenting my work day 'wishlist' in great detail brought to light elements I found important during the day that I'd never consciously considered, and allowed me to create a routine that made sure I scheduled them in.
I answered some questions similar to those below, and then created a pinterest board that pictured my day unfolding perfectly. From these reflections I picked out my morning routine as the first element to work on, and refining them over the past few months has had a massive effect on my productivity and happiness levels.
If you'd like to have a go at planning your Ideal Day, answer the questions below in as much detail as possible (is there anyone else with you? is there music? is it light? what are you eating?)
What's it like to wake up?
Describe your morning routine.
What's your day like? Describe your environments.
What fills your evening.
An ideal day is just a series of ideal routines and habits - little details and re-occurrences that create pattern, structure, and a solid foundation for the day. To start making it a reality, just incorporate one small habit from your answers and start to include it in your day. For me, it was making sure I had half an hour in the morning to slowly wake up, and a healthy breakfast already prepared (because otherwise I'd wouldn't stick to it). Once you've mastered one habit, move onto another. And don't be hard on yourself if you miss it for a day. Easy as pie.