Before you go to bed, what do you do? Are you a bedtime planner or are you a nighttime panicker? Have you planned your sleeping routine hours in advance, pyjamas hotly pressed and laid out, or, like me, have you fallen asleep with your face glued to your computer screen? How you end your day should be equally as important as how you begin it; your working mentality the following morning will be greatly improved or diminished as a direct result. In a vague attempt to better my mind and shut down my technologies at least an hour before bedtime, I have taken it upon myself to shake up our end of day routine and thought I would take you along for the ride.
We all have our specific routine that works for us and we should absolutely stick to it. Endings are all about structure and if there's one thing that I know, it's that we create our own rules for a reason. I like to have a cup of tea (decaf, who do you think I am?) directly before bed and even though I always wake up in dire need of a bathroom, I have never dreamed of changing this. What I can change, however, is my mood before bed. More often than not, I am frazzled, wired and beating myself for a bad day's work. Very poor indeed. In the name of change, then, it's time to shake things up. At the end of each day, instead of worrying about what you did not do, take a little time to ask yourself these series of questions. I bet that you will feel better about tomorrow when you do.
What Did I Make Today?
A lot of creative business hours are spent away from the making space. You're more likely to find me buried under a stack of dusty paperwork in a Kafka-esque nightmare than actually making something that I love. The times in which we do spend creating, therefore, are utterly precious and should be focused on entirely. Even if you only managed 5 minutes of creating in your day, make a note of it. The feeling of production is like no other and should be championed at every opportunity.
What Did I Learn Today?
Ok, so we don't all have time to pick up a brand new skill every day but we can still learn a surprisingly large amount through our daily interactions and projects. Today, for example, I learnt not to stand behind a door which opens in on itself. Invaluable. The smallest things that went a little wrong today can teach us so much about tomorrow and even if it's as insignificant as when to reply to a comment on social media, we can take the information and use it to change for the better,
Have I Been Kind To Myself?
This is where the sloppy stuff comes in and, if you're averse to a little cheesiness, look away now. Too many of our days are ended with us beating ourselves up, punishing ourselves for not being the best that we can be. Not every day is a picnic and it is during these times that we need to be kindest to ourselves. Sling off your work hat at the end of a hard day and take a little time out to do something that you enjoy. You will thank yourself later on when your productivity begins improve. Here's to looking at our future selves. Don't make tomorrow you hate today you for being cruel.
Have I Been Open to Others?
It's so easy in business to look at a product or a brand and dismiss it in a second. In many cases, it makes our decisions a whole lot easier, enabling us to categorise what fits into our own, singular version of reality. Sometimes, though, we shut out potential opportunities because we are too quick to judge. Giving something or someone the time of day to explain themselves is imperative if we want to grow as brands and as individuals. A great idea could be out there, waiting and you might have strolled on by. Be a window shopper, not a power walker.
Have I Moved Forwards From Yesterday?
Steps forward aren't always apparent; we often only take notice of the really big stuff that happens in our business and fail to look at everything else. We can feel like we're stagnating or moving nowhere because we don't pay attention. Take stock of everything that you have done in a day, all that you have taken in and learnt. Moving forward in any way is a thing to behold; give yourself the pat on the back that you deserve.