I always try to take a bit of time on Sunday night to think about the week ahead. Although I hate the idea that the weekend is over, rather than pretending that it's not going to happen, I actually feel less stressed about Monday morning at work if I, even just mentally, take a few minutes to run through what I need to do and what the week ahead looks like and what I want to do and feel throughout the week. It's kind of a practice taken from yoga -- the idea of setting an intention for your practice each day -- but broadened to apply to the whole week ahead.
Usually it includes thinking about what my personal life schedule looks like--from what days and how I'll fit some good exercise sessions, when I'll be catching up with friends to what I need to do to eat healthily and achieve a balance between fun and not feeling run-down and a bit crap at the end of the week.
October was a great month in so many ways, but healthy eating and fitness wasn't part of that greatness. Holiday bad eating habits stuck around for a bit too long and, even though I managed to keep fit on holiday, work was absolutely chaotic for the two weeks since I've been back, which didn't allow much in the way of fitness. So now I'm finding myself in the position of having to work even harder to get back on an even keel.
My intention for this week is to achieve all the goals I set for myself, but get to the end of the week without being completely wrung out and needing to hide for two days to recover!
There are three major areas that need a little 'shaping up' that will help me achieve this intention.
1) Get to bed earlier and get a better night's sleep.
With the mornings being darker, there's no excuse for waking up early and with darker evenings, it should be easy to get to bed on time. This week I will be in bed every night I can (barring one event for work) by 10pm.
I will also NOT check my phone after I've crawled into bed and I'll replace that with reading a few pages of a book I've been neglecting for the last month.
Lights out by 10.30 at the latest.
2) Exercise more.
I really haven't been getting my normal amount of exercise each week -- not by a long shot! This week is all about getting back into it and kickstarting the routine with a mix of running, yoga and classes. I'm open to trying new things, and have been getting a little bored of the regulars (which I still love, but fit & happy is all about variety and keeping exercise fun) so I'm looking for ideas.
On top of that, I've got the Greenwich 5k in late December so I need to get some proper time on my legs to get my running fitness back in order which means there will be at least three runs on the agenda this week.
3) Work more efficiently & healthily.
I bet a lot of people feel the way I do, but there's just SO much I need to accomplish in a day and it can sometimes be a bit overwhelming. Add to that keeping on top of blogging, which is something I really enjoy, and the social media that goes with it; life admin; plus fitness and social stuff during the week and it can all feel like there are never enough hours in the day (there really aren't! Argh!). But there are ways to balance things better, I'm sure, so during the day I'm going to use Stand Up app to try to manage things better. I want to focus on one task (or one at a time) for 45 minutes and then Stand Up will remind me to take a break to stand up from my desk. I'll use that as a cue to get some water, check in to social media briefly and generally give myself a timed break to do what I would normally do more sporadically. I'm hoping that will give me a greater focus and allow me to get things done more efficiently so I can actually accomplish more and do it better, without feeling that anything is slipping non-work wise.
I've actually been using Stand Up for a few days now and even as someone who's aware of the need to move around rather than sitting at my desk all day, I'm surprised almost every time the notification goes off by how soon it seems to the last time. Guess I haven't been getting up once an hour like I thought I was before! It's a simple and easy-to-use tool and I'd recommend it, both for adding a reminder to get off your bum and also for focussing for a set period of time.
I'm looking forward to starting a fresh new week, how about you? What are your intentions and how are you going to get there? What tools do you use that help you manage how hectic life can be?