If I polled 100 people and asked them what five things they could do everyday to make their lives better, I'm sure I'd get many different answers. So, I decided to give you my personal five things that I do to make me feel good, be more efficient and decrease stress levels.
#1: Wake Up Early: Hitting the snooze button six times every morning is a great way to start your day off slow and painful. Getting up a little earlier than you need to helps avoid the stress of having to rush around. Waking up late can lead to many negative outcomes first thing in the morning; missing the gym, stopping for a quick bullshit breakfast (or no breakfast at all), and just the fact that you are now behind in the day within the first half-hour.
#2: Workout Everyday: Yep, I said it...workout every day! Maybe you won't lift heavy weights every day (although, you should at least three days per week), but you should be doing something physical every day. Hit the gym some days, do a tabata in your living room, go outside for a hike, or go to your local park and do some hill sprints. The message here is to find a way to always stay active. Your mind, body and spirit will thank you.
#3: Stay Organized: When your bills are all paid, car is clean, and fridge is full of good food; you feel better. Humans seem to be more efficient when we're organized. Go clean out your car, make sure everything is up to date (insurance, registration, etc), organize your desk at your house to ensure everything runs smoothly, and try staying on top of the simple things. Organizing your life can be a daily struggle, but once you learn how to do it, your life runs a little smoother. Spending 30 minutes to an hour a day on tasks like this will make life much easier! Try it.
#4: Stay away from credit card debt! Last time I looked, the average credit card was charging a 25% lean of your purchases. You're actually better off going and getting a loan from the mob - even they won't hit you with that kind of percentage (just make sure you pay them back). It's really easy to get tricked into credit card debt. Even at your local Target type stores, every time you make a purchase, the workers are trained to get you to open a "Target Credit Card" so you can save money and points. Bullshit! They want you to over-spend and buy crap that you don't need, charge it, and now they charge you not only for the purchase, but also they get interest because you put it on their credit card. If you can't afford something, don't buy it! Sit down and make a financial plan to get yourself debt free.
#5: "Always do the right thing, even when no one is looking" This is something that probably should be #1 on the list. If something doesn't feel right, it ain't right. The same goes for the opposite. If something feels like it's the right thing to do, then do it. Showing good character towards yourself and towards others will always pay off in the long haul. A small example: At the supermarket last week, I put back a few women's shopping carts to save them that extra long walk to the cart holder. After I got done, an older gentleman who witnessed the situation stopped me and told me that he wished more people would just "be nice" to others like I just was. He thanked me. He thanked me for just being nice to people. He thanked me for just doing what was right! It was odd to me at first because that's normal to me because that's how I was raised. But the same should go for all of us. If you say you're going to do something, do it. This leads to a jump in confidence and character and it's a huge motivational boost because you are now a man (or woman) of your word...
#6: Work Your Ass Off! "When's the last time you really gave 100% at something?" Nothing can replace good old fashioned hard work. If you want to move up in a position at your job or make more money, work harder. Be relentless and grind harder than your competition. You can't replace hard work with whining, finger pointing, or crying about what's not fair.
These all seem like common things, maybe even easy things, but we often lose sight of them. Life gets busy and we get wrapped up in the little things, but we need to focus on making ourselves the best people we can be. Your actions, big and small, impact others (kids, family, friends, etc.) every day. It's time to make some effort to ensure that those actions create a positive impact and that you are presenting the best "you".