I set an alarm to wake up in the morning, but it rarely goes off since my internal clock always wakes me up about fifteen minutes before the scheduled time. On the few days it does beep in my ear, my day usually doesn’t start out calmly because I’ve learned to rely on the extra fifteen minutes. I become rushed and stressed, and find that this mentality carries over into the rest of the day.
I’ve watched colleagues rush through the door late for work (every morning!) while carrying a bag of donuts or a cup of coffee. Although I understand that breakfast is considered the most important meal of the day, I personally wondered about the decision to make the extra stop if they knew they were close to their start time and would most likely be late. But let’s not harp on that. The important thing to focus on is that this rushed and harried feeling sets the tone for each of us, and influences how clearly we think, how productive we are, and yes, our organizational skills for the rest of the day.
As king of the obvious, I want you to get up earlier—base the new time on how it fits in your schedule, but buy at least fifteen minutes of fluff time. If it means going to bed earlier, then work that piece into your overall schedule as well. Give yourself some breathing room before your shift or day starts so that you aren’t rushed. Try to set a calming tone to your day. For those individuals who like to play games with themselves by setting a clock or watch earlier or later, I recommend
against it. Besides the fact that you’re no longer synchronized with the rest of the people in your time zone, you’re actually self-initiating stress as you are constantly converting to the real time.
It’s important to start our day right with an easy wake-up and plenty of time to get ready. Our starting attitudes and productivity as we calmly walk through the door with plenty of time to spare will send positive messages to your brain that you intend to handle the day in a fully capable manner!
Thomas B. Dowd III’s books available in softcover, eBook, and audiobook (From Fear to Success only):
- Down the Chute: A Toboggan Tale (children’s book)
- Now What? The Ultimate Graduation Gift for Professional Success
- Time Management Manifesto: Expert Strategies to Create an Effective Work/Life Balance
- Displacement Day: When My Job was Looking for a Job…A Reference Guide to Finding Work
- The Transformation of a Doubting Thomas: Growing from a Cynic to a Professional in the Corporate World
- From Fear to Success: A Practical Public-speaking Guide received the Gold Medal at the 2013 Axiom Business Book Awards in Business Reference
- The Unofficial Guide to Fatherhood