Yesterday morning as I was sitting and working I realized that my mind was elsewhere and that I wasn’t focused. I just kept looking at my Facebook and watching video after video.
Right now, I am enjoying my time on the tropical island of Sri Lanka. I realized that if I don’t focus completely on my work that I’d end up working the entire day and miss all of the fun activities I had planned for myself (hanging out by the pool and a buffet lunch at my favorite restaurant here in Colombo!).
In this moment, I changed my approach and, in doing so, my day changed.
Instead of thinking about all the things I had to do today, I brought myself into the present moment and wrote down the 3 main projects that I wanted to focus on.
I realized that I could have a stressed day trying to complete this unrealistic to-do list and give up even before I started. I’d be wasting my time and getting irritated when I’ve not accomplished my tasks. I’d sit late into the evening and become totally drained of energy. Or, I could create a beautiful day; first, fully focusing on my work and then enjoying my time by the pool.
I chose to create a beautiful day! I am heading back soon to the Norwegian winter and I don’t want to miss my pool time!
For the rest of the day, I did things to ensure that my day was the best it could be. I ended up having a great day. I was able to focus, turn off my internet, and do one thing at a time.
My day was amazing. It was like I opened up for synchronicity. I ended up running into some friends here that I haven’t seen in years. I actually had planned to connect with them, but I was so busy with my to-do list that I hadn’t been able to make the necessary plans (I’ve lived in Sri Lanka for 8 years).
When I opened the door and stepped into the present moment, the universe replied with these small miracles that we can only see if we are present.
In this blog, I’ll share some simple steps that you can implement right away to invite magic into your day. Today is the only day you have for sure. You can never re-do this day. Live it to its fullest and let your intuition guide your day.
#01 Be here now
Instead of having your mind elsewhere, bring yourself into the now. Be in this moment and focus on where you are right now and what you’re doing. We cannot change things that have already happened and we cannot predict the future. Worrying about it does nothing to help you either. Instead, just focus on the now. If something is worrying you, take action. Even better, just be in the moment, and live as if now is all there is. Because this is the truth.
#02 Do less
Have a full schedule today? Cut it in half. You don’t need to do everything on that list. I took some items off of my to-do list and moved them to next week. Do less (but focus on the important stuff) and you’ll be less stressed.
#03 Chose 3 projects
Choose your 3 most important projects and focus on them exclusively. Focus on getting them to completion to the exclusion of all other projects. Do only these things today. You’ll be amazed at how much you accomplish. Let’s be realistic here – if we try to do everything, it means we really won’t do anything. Pick your projects wisely and do them with full focus. I believe one of the absolute best things you can do for your sanity is to whittle down your action items. The quality of your work will improve and so will your feeling of satisfaction.
#04 Let the music play.
Music has both the power to make us smile and bring us to tears. Research shows that some music can even make us focus more. Music can make or break your day. Find music that makes you feel good and lifts your mood while you work. Music boosts brain chemicals. One of the ways music affects mood is by stimulating the formation of certain brain chemicals. Dopamine is the brain’s “motivation molecule” and an integral part of the pleasure-reward system. Let the music play!
This is perhaps another obvious one, but there’s nothing better! In India, there are places where big groups meet up each morning and do laughter yoga. Even a simple smile affects our mood. Each time you smile you throw a little feel-good party in your brain. The act of smiling activates neural messages that benefit and increase your health and happiness.
“Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh