Admit it or not, life gets overwhelming for all of us. We get stressed out, feel depressed and unfulfilled from time to time. This post is a list of things you can do to keep from drowning, regardless of what hand life deals you.
1. Make Your Bed in the Morning
My bed is part wardrobe, table and book shelf and on really busy days, you’ll even find a bottle of water, a mug, a teaspoon and biscuit crumbs. But not in the morning. Every morning I make my bed because there’s something welcoming about returning to a smooth clear bed after a long hard day at work and in traffic. You see that bed and know you got at least one thing right. If you don’t already, I challenge you to make your bed tomorrow morning with clean sheets of course, it will only take a minute or two. See if it doesn’t add a little sunshine to the end of your day.
2.Use a To-Do List
Whether it’s on your mobile device, a small booklet or a single piece of paper, a To-do list is a great way to see that you get things done.
It’s the first step in transforming your thoughts and ideas into reality. Updating my to-do list every morning gives a sense of direction for my day. I get a kick out of crossing off the things I achieve, and hopping unto the next one. Those things I did but weren’t on my list, I add and cross them out anyway because they were part of my day. At the end of the day, I feel successful just looking at the things I crossed off, and those undone I reschedule. I strongly recommend you use a booklet or an app on your mobile device if you don’t already. There are so many free android apps which include Google Keep, Any-Do, and Wunderlist that allow you keep track of your list on any device. Use one.
3. 5 Full Squats a Day
Exercise is good for the body and full squats are the ultimate full body workout. But my health isn’t the reason I squat. Strong thigh muscles help you twerk walk longer and is said to give us a nice round booty firm glutes. Oh, and it’s great for bowel movement.
And there’s nothing special or scientific about doing just 5. 5 is really all I can manage before something somewhere starts to creak or hurt. You can do as many as you are comfortable with.
I am a religious person and I believe in committing my day to the highest power. Prayer should be the first thing on this list but I would be lying if I said it’s the first thing I do every morning. I prefer to say my morning prayers while driving to work, and at night, gratitude for a good day. I don’t care who or what you believe in. Knowing that someone has this life figured out and He has your back will give you strength to take on the day and peace of mind to accept the things that didn’t go so well. No matter how short, pray. A word or two will do.
5. Listen to Music
This I do right after prayer in the car or while I walk. With an upbeat song, I transform from nun to rock-star in seconds. If the music is your preferred genre, the traffic won’t matter. I get to the office high on endorphins. So, play your favourite song, get pumped and ready to conquer the day.
6. Phone On Silent
If you want to achieve your goals, you have to be focused. When I am working, my phone is on silent. My priority is crossing off things on my to-do list. When you are constantly interrupted by Facebook messages or notifications, WhatsApp chat, phone calls or text messages, you get fewer things done.
7. Talk to Your Loved Ones
“We have to allow ourselves to be loved by the people who really love us, the people who really matter.” Family is important, and so are your friends, your real friends. Your die-hard crew. Give them love and receive some in return. If MTN is well behaved, try video calling.
8. Take a 30-minute Walk
Better than running, walking is gentler on the knees and a more sustainable form of daily exercise. It’s effects on weight loss is questionable but if your job is sedentary, walking will help. It gives you time to clear your head, listen to music, read, or just play the day over to get some perspective. I prefer a late evening walk. It’s not the ideal time for most people, but I like the silence, the darkness and the spell of people’s dinner sipping into the street. Take a walk, whether at dawn or dusk, move your body for 30 mins and then the recommended 1 hour for a healthy heart.
9. Read and Write
“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” ― Dr. Seuss,
Everyone’s life is a story and the only way it will ever be told in detail to is to write it. I’m not saying to start an autobiography, but keep a record of your day or your week. “We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.” ―Anaïs Nina
Some people keep journals, I use my personal Facebook account, my to-do list and this blog. Together, it’s great to go back and read your life and accomplishments. You can see how you have changed or grown, and where you need to improve. The only way to make anything better is to keep accurate record of it. Why not monitor your own life?
10. Treat Your self
This I probably do too much of and that’s why my tummy can’t go down, but that’s beside the point. Life is short. Whatever your guilty-pleasure, indulge occassionally. Break your diet rules and have a muffin. Get yourself something nice and expensive once in a while, you really are worth it.
11. Help a Stranger
If you read my post on Project love in Lagos, you’ll know that I have a superhero complex. So, whether it is picking up someone in the rain, stopping to let someone cross or my favourite, donating blood, I’m ready to save the day. I don’t do these things out of altruism. I do it for myself because it makes me feel good. Research suggests that giving makes us happier, so give. Give your time, energy or a helping hand where you can, for your own good
It’s funny how these ordinary things can make you feel so much better. I hope you found a thing or two you’d like to adopt or at least try. They are small things, nothing revolutionary but I hope they make your life a little better, keep your head above the water, and help you survive your struggle. If there’s something you do to brighten your day, please share that with me in the comment section. I’d love to hear from you.