A Way to Evaluate Your Day
It is difficult to deny that a happy, successful life is composed of happy, successful days. Days are the basic building blocks of a life.
This is why it is important to take an objective look, every now and then, at how we are spending our days. A positive habit to adopt is recording the activities and tasks that we complete during the day. I begin doing this in the morning, when I write out a list of things that I would like to accomplish that day. After I have written the list, I decide on the order in which to complete the tasks. I group tasks that can be done together. For example, I can do some tasks while driving to and from the office or driving my kids to their activities. I try to make the order in which I will complete tasks as efficient as possible.
I have proven to myself many times that I am at least 50% more productive when I write down in advance what I plan to complete that day. Another positive by-product of writing tasks down and ticking them off as I complete them is that I have a permanent record of what I completed. This provides an inventory that I can use in evaluating whether my days are mostly successful.
The following are a few key questions that I ask myself in order to determine whether a day was successful:
- Were the majority of the tasks and activities that I completed reactionary or were they creative or proactive in nature? The ideal day has its fair share of creative or proactive tasks. Calling a client to ask how his or her project is going is proactive. Responding to a client concern is reactionary. Exercise is proactive. Finding the end of Facebook is reactionary. Do you see my point?
- In the tasks that I completed, was I being of service mainly to myself or mainly to other people? I consider mentoring, working with clients to help them find solutions to their problems, and writing and otherwise producing content that has an unlimited shelf life as being of service to other people.
- What was my predominant attitude during the day? Was it forward-looking, or was it influenced by past mistakes or failures? I have had episodes in my life when the predominant attitude I carried around was anything but positive. Today, I try to hold an attitude of gratitude and expectancy as much as I can.
- Was I being an enabler or a disabler as I completed the activities? Did my tasks enable forward movement or did they cut back someone or something?
What should we do if our day was less than it could have been? The best reaction is to shrug it off and make tomorrow better.
It is indeed true that a successful life is composed of successful days. It is important to look objectively, from time to time, at our days, determine if we are on the right track or the wrong track, and make adjustments accordingly.
I hope that these suggestions help you to have more successful days ahead.
What are your thoughts? Is there anything more basic than a day in a life? I welcome your comments below.