Maybe the most important skill in your arsenal is prioritization. It likely makes you very good at your job, strong in the gym, and happy everywhere else. Prioritizing the right task over the wrong saves time and energy, which translates to money at work and happiness in your personal life.
We arrive at one of our favorite topics at Live Better - routine.
"Discipline = Freedom"
Having a routine, both AM and PM, saves brain power units and primes you to succeed in your day. The AM routine might include drinking water, taking a few deep breaths instead of checking your email right away, or getting a workout in.
Your PM routine might include foam rolling, some journaling, light reading, or just avoiding your phone a few minutes before bed.
Why is conserving brain power important throughout your day? Because of a concept called decision fatigue. You don’t have unlimited energy (as much as we wish that were true), and using your brain throughout the day spends that cash.
Consider it like you have 100 points to use, and no more, before you run out of mental energy. Each decision costs a varying number of points, depending on time and complexity.
Things you shouldn’t spend (excess) time on: what to eat, clothes to wear, simple errands, email checking times, packing for business trips.
Things you should spend time on: major life choices, business deals, relationships.
There are two ways to maximize your “points”:
1) Increase the number of points (better health = more energy = more points)
2) Save points (meditate, formulate a routine)
Consider this example:
You’re in busy season at work and about to pull an all nighter. Tasks requiring your brain to work hard deplete glucose in your brain more rapidly, which leads to that “brain fog” feeling (the dull headache you get when you say “my brain hurts”). We can’t think clearly and often times make poor food choices under this weakness. In an argument, this is often times when we say the things we most regret afterwards. When the brain is asked to do too much, it starts to shut down. Unfortunately, the fatigue usually carries over to the next day as well (after elevated stress levels keep us from quality sleep).
The goal here is to place less demand on working memory (your brain’s cognitive horsepower) through better prioritization, or you bulletproof the body and brain to handle more stress and have more energy by bettering your health.
Remove the BS back and forth conversations about where to have lunch. Pick it out at the beginning of the week, make your food in batch at the beginning of the week, or pre-research the menu if you’re traveling. Lay out your clothes the night before, or better yet just buy the same T-shirt and pair of pants to wear every day for a year.
Spend time and energy on the things that matter to you. Conserve time and energy by prioritizing and creating a routine for the things that matter less.
It’s the best day ever, every single day. #LiveBetter