Do you ever feel like time is speeding up and it’s near impossible to stay focused and productive throughout your day? What about distractions? Are you easily pulled off track with time-sucking social media and other menial distractions?
Creating a daily routine and Daily Method of Operation for yourself is a simple yet highly effective way to stay on track and focused.
Consciously creating the life of our dreams requires that we create a solid foundation from which to launch our days. Thinking productively, making decisions, and taking action from a focused, centred, and purposeful place is easy when you have that solid foundation, or what I, as an entrepreneur, like to call my DMO (Daily Method Of Operation). DMO is simply a ritual, practice or daily routine.
When our days aren’t productive, it’s usually because we don’t have good habits and behaviours in place, or we waste time on unimportant, unfruitful tasks. In order to develop a good DMO, we must first create a routine and follow it religiously until it becomes second nature (That, by the way, is the key to upgrading any area of your life).
To transform your DMO and daily routine, you first have to understand how your current one is failing you and what needs to change. When you let go of the old routine you can create space for a new one that connects you to your current purpose, upgrades your behaviour, and aligns you with your true goals.
When your goals are congruent with your behavior, achieving them becomes almost effortless.
Keep in mind that everyone's DMO and daily routine will be radically different and you don't need to conform to what works for me, what works for your friends with similar goals or what works for anyone else. Through trial and error, you'll discover what works for you, and you'll be on your way to a happy, fulfilling, and productive day.
When I'm low on energy, low in motivation, have a poor attitude or am feeling overwhelmed, it's usually because my DMO is out of sorts. This is where my "Big Five" or "No Matter What" actions come into place. These are the actions I must take to make every day enjoyable, creative, and productive. When I'm feeling less than stellar, you can probably bet that I've been skipping one of these five essential steps.
My Daily “Big Five” or “No Matter What” Actions:
1. Get eight hours of sleep a night and wake up by 7:00 a.m. Sleep deprivation is a big trigger for anxiety and stress, two demons you want to avoid like the plague!
2. Meditate for fifteen minutes a day, ideally twenty-five minutes twice per day. This is how you'll center your mind and body, bring down stress levels, and find your focus.
3. Drink at least one and a half litres of water a day. Hydration is key to a healthy body!
4. Eat fresh fruit and vegetables, raw whenever possible. Fuel your brain and body with juicy fruits and leafy greens.
5. Exercise for thirty minutes a day. Good Physiology = Good Psychology.
Some of my other DMO steps in my daily routine:
Create content. If that's just not in the cards or I'm not inspired, I brainstorm other income-generating projects and work on those. Websites like Pinterest are excellent for finding inspiration, but make sure you're focused enough to keep from getting sucked into the Internet all day!
Read or watch something inspiring, such as a great TED talk. This will kick-start your motivation and stimulate your brain. Grab a coffee and head to a local bookstore. Browse the shelves; look for words, letters, and colors that stand out and speak to you.
Visualize. Take a walk, find inspiration in nature, snap some photos to spark a creative urge. Head to a local farmer's market, greenhouse or park, and discover how the sights, smells, and sounds affect your senses.
Engage in positive self-talk and affirmation. A dose of self-love always helps me refocus and regain my perspective. For every negative thought you have about yourself, your work or anything else, force yourself to think five positive thoughts.
Keep a journal and make time for self-reflection. Document your thoughts, your days, and your goals in a private journal. Let go of your desire for perfection and let your mind flow. You'll be surprised where it takes you!
Think of your DMO as planting seeds in the soil and nurturing them every day. Building discipline around your daily routine is great for creativity because you begin to do it consciously instead of cramming it in when you have time, which doesn't produce high-quality work.
Success doesn't always come from the big actions we take, but from the sum of all the small actions we repeat. Discipline is the beginning of self-mastery, and self-mastery begins when you understand that nothing in your outer world can change unless your inner world changes first. As soon as I began to master my DMO, I felt my days flowing more smoothly and my work getting done faster. Physically, I felt lighter, healthier, and happier. Who couldn't use more of that?
So get going on creating your own DMO and watch how productive your days and weeks become. Notice how you feel, how you flow, how things fall into place, and how life becomes, well, almost effortless.