There are so many ways to reach your goals, but even before starting to tackle them and doing the work, you have to do the strategic planning. You HAVE TO do the strategic planning. It’s not just a matter of mindset actual work, and consistency. There’s a method to setting yourself up and how to live a successful life in general.
Whether it’s putting away the dishes, erasing excess files on your desktop, even the vocabulary you don’t use anymore. You need to properly clean your slate to start planning for success in business.
Showering can make you feel like a new person. When you go camping, travel on an airplane, or even spend the weekend at a friend’s house, showering can change your perspective on the world. Getting this out of the way makes you procrastinate less and get things done. I used to shower at the end of the day after I finished all my work, but would get impromptu invites from family or friends to go out and I wasn’t even close to ready.
Avoid any awkward answers, long waits, or simply an “I can’t do this today” mindset by simply being ready for anything first and foremost. If you’re a person who does your makeup, do your makeup after you’re ready from your shower. If you typically throw your hair into a bun, because you’re on third-day hair, do it asap! When your glam is on lock, you’re not just ready but you feel confident to take on more.
This is probably easy for most people, but when I wake up in the morning, the first thing I do is get to work. Just open my lap top which charges right next to my bed and literally start working. I don’t check emails, don’t check messages from clients just yet. Just get to work and start typing away.
2. Clean your desk.
The first step to getting your house in order is clearing the space you work. Your desk is home and the nucleus for all the things you need and that will be thrown at you.
This means wiping off the dust that has the balls to land on your work surface, organizing whatever pens you need and don’t need, even just removing everything from on top of it completely. Just keep your mouse or notepad–whatever you use to operate the business–and you will have a clear mind with no distractions.
Sure, your coworker, assistant, or even partner might put a publication or some mail on your desk. Get it out of the way quickly and efficiently so you optimize your workflow to have less diversions in your focus. Something as simple as your cell phone–especially when iMessage is already connected to your desktop–can be intrusive with all the Instagram notifications. Unless you’re a social media manager, publicist or influencer, forget about your social notifications.
3. Clean up your email inbox.
The emails in your inbox you don’t subscribe to and even clear out the trash folder when you know it’s full of all the things you won’t bother with.
Emails generally are overlooked as I have over 6 personal emails to keep up with and constantly sift through. Each one has a purpose and unsubscribing to things you will never read–or haven’t read will make your life loads easier. I have things I want to get around to reading, but realize it doesn’t have much importance.
They stack up and I either read them once a week all built into one, scanning them opposed to really understanding each piece. If the email doesn’t change your life with or without reading it you might as well get rid of it. It’s purely for entertainment, so keep it if you want. But if there’s an entertaining email I can’t live without, I’m definitely going to prioritize those before anything else.
4. Get your work space organized.
Make everything you use for work as accessible as possible. The items you use most frequently closest to you–if you use chargers, pens, notebooks, a coffee coaster–they should be within reach. If you have a file cabinet that you need every now and again, keep it either across the office or in a different room completely. This way you can stretch and move around for breaks.
Also, don’t have food at your desk. Lunch breaks are vital to having a sense of balance. Enjoy your eating period and let there be a gap. Keep it separate from your zone of industry. If you have a balcony or patio, eat outside. Get a change of scenery for a bit to get you back into the work and actually savor your next task. (As you can see I love my work.)
With this said, don’t keep drinks at your desk. And I mean a mini fridge stocked with water. Take a water break. Working from home or in the office, get up and do it meaningfully so you don’t have to do it often. Have a coffee, juice, or water next to you, sure. But don’t keep a stock that keeps you living at your office. That’s what your home is for. If you have an office within your home, you know an office is not a place to be completely comfortable that you can fall asleep.
Having an organized work space means it’s also easier to clean up and tidy your area quickly and easily to prepare for your next visit. Efficiency is key when it comes to structuring your situation.
5. Set up your wardrobe uniform for the week.
This takes everything into a whole other level as I did this for a long time. To make my life easier, instead of having tons of clothes and outfits to choose from with backups in case I felt bloated, I simplified my wardrobe down to capsule size.
As Donna Karan mentioned in her book about having 7 go-to items, I implemented this idea. Instead of having 7 items, I took into account the items that would wear out the fastest: trousers. If you own a suit you know you need incorporate an extra set of trousers because you’re constantly wearing them down.
- 2 of the same suits jackets with
- 4 of the same matching trousers
- 2 of the same 3 breton tops that are all similar but multiple distinctly colored stripes
- 4 good cashmere sweaters that are all the same
- 4 differently striped Thomas Pink shirts from Jermyn Street
My wardrobe is literally all white. The reason I chose white is because it’s extremely difficult to clean and shows how much I will care for clients in my business. It’s a sign of respect, feels fresh, and is a subtle indicator to any prospects I want to work with. I guess technically off white, egg shell, ecru, etc. You know what I mean.
Thanks to H&M’s conscious line, I was able to snag all these items for under $35 each. This is not a plug. I’m genuinely excited at the quality, as I love sustainability, and the fact that my life is sooooooooooo much easier.
The cashmere sweaters were from J.Crew less than $100 each. While the Thomas Pink shirts (RIP-You will always have my heart), were all around $150-200 each. One was a gift from my loving husband and the others I saved up for.
Not having to take years of your life deciding what to wear when you have a signature uniform is insanely the most important and productive thing I have ever done for myself. To make it look like I actually put effort, I apply mascara, red lipstick and my favorite gold hoops.
When your clothes are all the same, you are also living your brand. Everyone will recognize you in photos or when you make appearances. Look at Karl Lagerfeld. I haven’t really seen him without shades, gloves, a collar, or hair down. Jenna Lyons without her classic thick, square glasses and swept-back hairdo.
Creating an easy closet of garments you will actually wear gives the option of dressing up for important lunches and dressing down for working from home. Your pants are always the same so nobody has any idea if you spilled something and switched them out.
Investing in a timeless, quality wardrobe is pandemic proof, trend proof, and mock proof. It will last you for a good few years especially if you take the time to take care of it properly. It also costs you less to go shopping all the time for trendy items that wear fast from being cheaply made. Thinking of something to throw on your back shaves off years of your life!
Now that this part of your daily routine is figured out, you are excited to work and ready for anything coming your way!