3 Things You Should Do Every Evening
Have you ever made it to Friday and felt like the whole week was a blur? An exhausting, busy, and overwhelming blur.
Never-mind remembering what you had for dinner on Tuesday -- you're just ready to sink into the bed…possibly with wine? Hennessy? Just me :)
While this could very well be the "story of your life" -- it is actually not living at all. Truthfully this is existing...and you are meant for so much more than a to do list, due dates, meeting invites and whatever other mundane activities tend to wear us down each day.
Taking back control of your life is not only about what you do, but more importantly about shifting your perspective. As vague as this sounds, there are 3 super simple habits you can start doing right now, to shift to more fulfilling and less draining days.
1. Gratitude x Appreciation
Cultivating a practice of gratitude and appreciation can greatly transform your life. I often refer to them as the ultimate cheat code for life, and the shortest of short cuts for raising your overall vibe. Most people are only familiar with expressing gratitude, but you can deepen your practice by adding appreciation. Check out the gratitude vs. appreciation section for a deeper overview of each and their subtle difference.
How to begin:
Every evening make 2 lists. Don't overthink it, just list the first things that come to mind, and trust your gut:
List 5 things you wish to express gratitude for the day
List 5 things you appreciate
Bonus: Try not to repeat any item in the same week. Challenge yourself to uncover all the things and all the moments that you cherish and bring you joy.
Sometimes it's hard not to rush through the day. With one thing after another, we can find ourselves going through the motions, not really present and not truly focused. Mindfulness and mindset work is not a one and done thing. It must become a habit, a consistent part of your routine. The quickest way to begin working with awareness, is to work with yourself and your thoughts. In just 5 minutes a day, you can slow yourself down, and regain your presence and either relax or refocus yourself for the day.
How to begin:
Start with just 5 minutes a day, choose a focus and follow the 3 quick steps here.
Not quite ready to sit still, try one of these other mindful exercises here.
As cliche as it sounds, every day -- even the challenging ones, are a gift. There are lessons, signs, highs and more packed into each of our days. We do ourselves a huge disservice by not checking in with ourselves, and reflecting over the day. More importantly success, achieving goals, and personal growth in any area of your life is about personal insight. Your ability to take inventory of your actions and self correct. Start your practice of intentional reflection each evening, choosing a few of the following questions to journal, discuss with a friend or think over (meditation style?).
How to begin:
Here are a few of my favorites for you to choose from. Try starting with 3 or so for the week.
What was the highlight of my day (where did I experience the most joy)?
What can I do to make tomorrow an even better day?
What is one thing I need to know/prepare for tomorrow?
How did I practice self care today?
How can I practice self care tomorrow?
How do I feel about the day?
Did I use my time wisely?
Did anything call me stress or inner conflict today? Why?
What inspired me today?
How do I want to feel tomorrow? Bonus: What is one thing I can do to make that happen?
#MyVibes: How I make it “stick”
How do you turn these activities into habits? I'm glad you asked :) — the key is to start small, and add more habits over time.
Choose your one activity
Choose a date to start
Set a daily reminder & do it!
Overtime you can work towards developing a full evening routine complete with all 3 habits. Remember: The goal isn't to take up your time -- just your attention. Focus less on the “duration” and more on feeling complete.