I don’t know about you but I’m not a fan of February. It’s the shortest month on the calendar but can seem like the longest. Other than my son’s birthday and the Super Bowl, I’d love to jump to March. At least there’s a chance I’ll see grass then. Spring is hopefully around the corner, but Winter does it’s best to remind us…not yet.
Blah Blah Blah
February is also the time many 2017 goals and ambitions fall off, leading to feelings of discouragement, frustration and apathy. Maybe that’s you today. Are you dealing with the Winter blahs? If you are, you’re not alone.
I’d like to suggest 6 simple habits that you can initiate today that can have a greater impact on your life than you might want to believe. 6 lifehacks if you will, that are easy and effective in improving our lives. So without any further ado, here we go.
Make Your Bed
In his book The Power of Habit, Charles Duhigg writes that “making your bed every morning is correlated with better productivity, a greater sense of well-being and stronger skills at sticking with a budget.”
It may seem silly, but making your bed can give you a sense of accomplishment and it can reduce your stress level too. By accomplishing a simple task such as making your bed you have accomplished something and organized your space.
It might seem too small to matter but starting your day by making your bed gives you an instant feeling of success and the feeling that you are on top of things. You feel organized and ready to take on the day. This two minutes of work sets the tone for the rest of the day.
By making your bed, you are starting to declutter your space. And a decluttered space lowers your level of stress and very calming. Who doesn’t want some calm? You are in control of your own space and how it looks and therefore, how it makes you feel. Why not start with making your bed?
Kiss Your Spouse Goodbye
No, I don’t mean for good. I mean each morning as you leave the house. I came across research suggesting that men who do this live 5 years longer..even if that’s anecdotal, it’s worth it, isn’t it?
Run Your Own 2-Minute Drill
In football there is a scheduled timeout when there are 2 minutes left in each half. The team with the ball is usually trying to score or run out the clock to prevent the other team from scoring. This is called the 2 minute drill.
Every day we have the opportunity to run our own version of the 2-minute drill.
Think of the transitions that occur each day as your 2 minute drill; here’s an example.
When you come home from work and the family is home, the first 2 minutes can determine the tone of the entire evening. How you greet them, your body language, facial expression and tone of voice are all part of the drill. Use them wisely.
How you enter the office at the start of the day can impact the relationship you have with your coworkers.
Whatever transitions you have, decide ahead of time how you will approach them. Determine that you will smile, give a warm greeting, a hug or kiss (if appropriate), use a positive tone of voice and offer a genuine greeting. It could have a dramatic affect on you and those around you.
Writing in a gratitude journal has become a popular practice. It’s a great way to start the day (after you’ve made the bed). According to Amy Morin, being grateful and can have a significant impact on your health, relationships and even improve your sleep.
“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Colossians 3:17
Don’t Let The Dishes Pile Up
In this current season of my life I wash a lot of dishes. Whether at home or at our cafe. And truthfully, I don’t mind at all. I’ve written about this before, you can check it out here . But essentially, washing dishes can be refreshing, relaxing and provide time for reflection. So don’t avoid the dishes, wash them.
Ask How Someone Is Doing…And Listen For Their Answer
The other morning I was clearing the sidewalk out front of our cafe. A woman walked by and I said hello and asked how she was doing. She stopped, paused, and with trembling in her voice said, “I talked with my dad last night and he called me names.” She started to cry as she shared some of the harsh words directed at her.
I told her that I was sorry she had such a conversation and that she wasn’t the things he called her. That she wasn’t those things. She smiled, thanked me and went on her way.
The whole encounter took less than a minute but hopefully the exchange encouraged her. It wasn’t a bad way to start the day for me either.
Sometimes we have the opportunity to make some big decisions that can have a huge impact on the direction our lives go. But we can also make simple decisions that don’t take a lot of time or money, just focused effort.
The winter months can take their toll on our physical, emotional, relational and spiritual well-being. But these 6 simple habits can make a difference.
If you begin practicing all these habits, they might take you thirty minutes a day. But even implementing one or two is a good start.
Feeling stuck? Not sure what to do next? Your life not where you want it to be?
Life coaching can help. Contact me to arrange a free 30-minute discovery call. Lets talk.