Do you know what successful people have in common when it comes to their daily routine? They do the same things every day, over and over again. Some people call them rituals, other people think it’s crazy. I’m on the ritual side.

There are probably lots of things successful people do every day. But there are seven things in particular you can add to your routine that will keep you productive and that you won’t want to miss again.

And just to clear this up right away – going to the gym isn’t one of them. It’s good to exercise every day, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be on this list.

So let’s get into this list of habits you can add to your daily routine to help you feel more in control of your life, which will keep you more productive. Because if you get the small things right, then the big things will soon follow along and you’ll be able to make them happen.

1. Morning pages.

There’s a book called The Artists’ Way which recommends this technique and it’s really effective. The idea behind morning pages is that you write for three pages right when you wake up in the morning before you’ve given your brain a chance to wake up. No checking emails or social media – it’s all about your thoughts and fresh ideas first thing in the morning and getting those down on paper.

It’s recommended in the book that you do this longhand, not typing because it’s going to help you process your thoughts more instead of just pounding at the keyboard.

Sometimes you might just be writing that you wish you weren’t doing this right now. But there’ll also be a morning where something completely amazing will happen and an idea that you’ve been hoping for will finally come out. Your best bet is to dive in and see what ideas you can come up with.

2. Lemon water.

Once you start adding lemon water to your daily routine, you won’t want to miss it. So much so that when you wake up, you’ll be seriously thirsty for lemon water. This is so effective for waking the body up right away. If anything, you’ll be more hydrated than you were before and it’ll wake you up in an instant.

3. Do not disturb time.

When is the first time you check your emails? Right when you wake up? While you’re having breakfast? If you want to be highly effective, you need to change that.

A lot of highly effective people don’t actually check their email until the afternoon. Why? Because the morning is a time that you can control. The earlier you wake up the better. So if you wake up at 5:30am, you’ve got a good three hours of time you can spend to yourself. And what’s even more effective is putting your phone on do not disturb during that time. There won’t be anything happening that early in the morning that’s going to be so critical that someone can’t get in touch with you. 

Plus you can set rules for do not disturb on your phone. So if someone rings you three times in a row, that’s when do not disturb won’t work anymore so you know it’s an emergency, or your favourites can get through it and so on.

Just think what it would be like if you forgot to take your phone off do not disturb. When you’re in the middle of the afternoon and you’ve had a super productive day but you don’t know why – you look at your phone and see it’s still on do not disturb. You probably got a lot more done, right? So feel free to let your do not disturb go on longer than planned.

4. Plan your week.

The must-have habit if you want to be highly effective is planning your week in advance. Add this to your daily routine and block out the periods of time that you need to get real work done. Then each morning you can look at your plan and if some last minute appointments have cropped up, you can just move some things around. This way, you know the things that need to get done are going to get done because you’ve blocked off the time to do them.

5. A daily walk.

It’s completely normal if you don’t make it to the gym every single day. But a great thing to do is keep an eye on how many steps you take in a day. If you can be between 10,000 and 15,000 steps, on average per day, this is going to mean you’ll be in much better shape rather than a sedentary worker who doesn’t exercise or walk at all. If you can exercise 3-4 times a week and average around 10,000 steps, you’re working towards a pretty good goal.

The best time to add a walk to your daily routine is in the afternoon. You could always take your dog for a walk, post a letter or nip to the shop for something. You can even walk on the treadmill and check your emails – that’s the best form of multi-tasking.

6. Tidy up.

Deep cleaning takes so much time. But honestly, if you keep a tidy house, that is such an easy way to make it look a whole lot cleaner. If you want to add this to your daily routine it’s simple – every day, tidy some area of your home, so it doesn’t get to a point where you’re completely overwhelmed.

One day it might be the bathroom, another time it might be your office at home, or it could be the living room that needs tidying. It could be as simple as making the bed. Basically, any time you leave a room and you see something that doesn’t belong there, take it with you and put it where it belongs. For instance, you can take an empty coffee cup from your office and put it in the kitchen.

7. Reading.

It doesn’t matter if you’re not the fastest reader. This is the best way to put yourself to sleep at night. All you need to do is read a few pages and it’ll be the most amazing, soothing moment of your daily routine.

Not to mention the number of ideas you go to sleep with and then what happens with your morning pages the next day, it’s just so productive, especially for a creative mindset.

Those are 7 habits that will keep you highly productive if you add them to your daily routine. Do you have any other recommendations? Let’s see if we can help each other and everybody else out.

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