One thing I have been really struggling with lately is getting to work on time. For years I went in to work between 7:30 and 8 am, leaning towards 8. On top of that, I was in a work environment where I had proven myself for years to be reliable, productive, and efficient. My boss and teammates knew me and knew that everything that needed to get done would always get done whether I worked at the office, from home, or was going between buildings for meetings.
I’ve recently started a new job that requires me to be available for 7 am meetings about three times a week. I am finding getting to work an hour earlier than usual very difficult. I am in a new building with a new team that does not know me. So I need to make sure I prove myself once again. This means being consistently on time and spending the vast majority of my time in the office. Flexibility is earned and I need to earn it in this environment just like I did before.
In order to be successful, you need a plan. So I made a plan to help make myself successful at getting to work before 7 am.
The first thing I did might seem silly, but it is working.
I put my alarm clock in my bathroom.
What? That’s right! I’ve gotten to the point that I can turn my cell phone alarms off without ever waking up. Half the time I don’t even remember them going off. It’s high school all over again except I don’t have my parents to yell at me until I get up!
To combat this, I got out the big loud alarm clock I used back then and plugged it in on the bathroom counter. My bathroom is connected to my bedroom and the alarm is loud enough to wake me up from there. Now I’m required to get out of bed and go into the bathroom to turn the alarm off. Already being in the bathroom, I get right in the shower. No snoozing, no clock within arm’s reach. So far it’s working!
I am also trying to get in an evening routine that will help me stay organized, healthy, and get out quickly in the morning. Obviously some of these things I’ve been doing already (yes, I do brush my teeth) so I’ve highlighted the ones that are additions. Here’s what I’ve come up with so far.
- Stretch (5-10 minutes)
- Take Dean out (5 minutes)
- Prepare / pack lunch for next day (5-10 minutes)
- Brush teeth, floss, wash face, etc (10 minutes)
- Set alarm (the one on the bathroom counter!)
- Lay out clothes for work next day (5 minutes)
- Read and/or journal (20-30 minutes)
- Lights out!
This routine can take anywhere from 30-60 minutes and it does some really good things for me.
First off, packing my lunch and laying out my clothes for the next day means that I can get out of the house quickly in the morning without doing too much thinking. This is good. I’m not known for being a morning person.
Packing my lunch means I can eat healthier and save money which will be important in meeting my weight loss goals. Flossing is something I do once every great while so hopefully this way I’ll at least do it once a week! That and regular stretching will keep me healthier overall.
The reading and journaling are for me. I don’t read enough and this gives me dedicated time to do it each day. Journaling is something I’ve found helps me deal with stress, emotions, and depression. Plus, they are both away from the blue lights of cell phones, TVs, and computers so they will help my body power down and get sleepy. Unless it’s a really good book. 😉
Do you have an evening routine? What does yours include?