BeforeYourNext Birthday-DeniseFisher’s Blog

Get fit, get organized, & get your financial affairs in order

The Plan: Do These 12 Things Tonight to Improve Your Tomorrow

Posted by denisefisher on January 23, 2009

Whether you go to work, work at home, go to school, or are in transition, there are several things you can do this evening that will significantly improve the kind of day you’ll have tomorrow. Here are 12 of them:


1. Set your bedtime. That’s right – start by deciding what time you need to be in bed to get enough sleep before it’s time to get up. Then make it 30 minutes earlier. Read through the rest of this list and give yourself enough time to do these tasks before your stated bedtime. I’d estimate that it’ll take at least an hour. Start sooner and you won’t go wrong. Things always take longer. That’s why it’s so hard to get to bed “on time”.


2. Turn if off. Turn off the TV, the cell phone, the computer, the Blackberry – everything that can distract you from preparing for the next day.


3. Pack a lunch. This task alone will save you more time, money, and unhealthy eating tomorrow than anything else on the list. And if you play it right, with the time you save, you can use part of your lunch break to de-stress by going for a walk (even if it’s just a walk inside) or reading a book or calling someone you love.


4. Fill a water bottle. And take it with you tomorrow. This will help you to drink water during the day, instead of soft drinks or lattes – saving your teeth and your cash. Maybe take two bottles.


5. Plan your breakfast. While you’re in the kitchen, you might as well plan what to have for breakfast tomorrow. If you’re going to have cereal, for example, set out the cereal box and set the table with bowl and spoon. If you know you’re more likely to eat on the go or when you get to work, pack something to take with you – even if it’s just a peanut butter sandwich and a banana.


6. Shine the kitchen sink. This is a tip recommend by the Fly Lady, but I’ve found it to be an effective psychological boost to your overall outlook. You start by cleaning the sink, and before you realize it, you’ll be wanting to clear the countertops, put things away, and wipe off the stove top. And in the morning, when you awake to a clean kitchen sink, you’ll feel like your day is off to a good start. And you’ll be more inclined to keep your kitchen clean.


7. Plan to exercise, first thing. I’m not talking about a full-blown workout at the gym necessarily. Just do some kind of physical activity for at least 10-20 minutes. If you don’t get anything else accomplished during the day, at least you’ll be glad you got in a workout of sorts. Here are two easy options for the workout-averse:


            Option A – the fair weather plan – go outside and walk around the block 3 times; if you don’t have a block, start walking any direction for 8-10 minutes, then turn around and walk back. You get the idea. Just walk.


            Option B – the inside plan – house dancing. Find yourself 4 good songs from your music library that you could dance to. Slow stretches or wild jammin’ – just put on the music and dance. Bonus points if you include hand weights, push-ups, or crunches with your moves.


8. Lay out your clothes. I know, this sounds like something you’d tell a child, but it’s a good idea for everyone. You’d do it if you were going to an important interview. Be your own valet, avoid morning decisions, and know that your clothing items are clean, pressed, and have functional fasteners. Include footwear and other accessories to assure your socks match and you have what you need to be fully dressed. It’ll save you time and sanity in the morning. That’s always a good way to begin the day.


9. Put your things by the door. Keys, briefcase, backpack, sunglasses, dry cleaning, ID badge, and anything else you need to take with you when you leave. Maybe check your wallet to confirm your financial situation too. Use a note, checklist, or some other reminder for your lunch, cell phone, and other things that can’t sit by the door overnight.


10. Floss your teeth. Seriously. Don’t just brush your teeth, floss them. Did you know that flossing not only reduces bad breath, gingivitis, and periodontal problems but may also reduce chances of stroke or heart attack? Plus, anything that can avoid the expense and anxiety of dental procedures should make it worth the minor inconvenience. People who have their act together floss their teeth. Be one of those people.


11. Read something. Read to your kids (if you have them). Read to your partner (if you have one). Or just read to yourself. Increase your knowledge or cultural literacy while calming your mind and preparing your eyes and body for sleep. Nobody ever says, “I wish I hadn’t read so much.”


12. Go to bed. Actually, you might want to be in bed to do your reading. But one way or another, to get a good night’s sleep and improve your tomorrow, you need to get to bed tonight.


Try doing these things tonight and see if your next day doesn’t turn out better than today. If it works out for you, you can do it again tomorrow.






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