“You have to be the kind of person who can make the most out of a Thursday.
You know those people who live for the weekends? They’re wishing their life away.
You have to be find something worth living for, every single day, or else you’ll waste all this precious time.
Oh and by the way, it’s never too late to find it.” – Drew Martin
Yesterday, the lovely people over at The Cut & Sephora asked me to share my typical day in NYC. Honestly, since I quit my full-time job a few months ago and began working for myself, each and every day is different. But what I did learn from sitting down to explain my day is that there are a few things I do (or try to anyway) which make such a huge difference to the overall ‘success’ of a day. I really do believe that when it comes to happiness, productivity, etc. it all comes down to your mindset. So finding things which make every day a positive one is key. Earlier this week, on Instagram, I shared the above quote and it’s genuinely one which I look to at least once a week. It is SO easy to wake up on a Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday morning and start the day on a negative note because it’s ‘just another day’ but when you take a step back and realise the time you’re wasting, it really is an eye-opener. So today I wanted to share some tips on how to make the most of EVERY day.
1. Figure out what’s making you unhappy/stressed and take steps (right now) to change it.
By no means do I have terrible skin, but over the past few months it is something that has been really getting me down. It’s honestly crazy how the smallest of things can have such a huge effect. I would wake up in the morning, do my make up before my events/meetings and honestly feel so fed up with how my skin was looking. I would cover up with sunglasses and just felt very conscious of how it was looking. It was crazy dehydrated due to a lot of traveling and as a result, my foundation looked worse than cakey. I was also suffering from breakouts which never help any situation and overall, it was making me start each day on a very negative note. I know some of you might be thinking this is such a small problem, but I’m just using it as an example of how very small things can have a very big effect – sometimes without even realizing it. So after noticing the negative effect it was having on me, I MADE A CHANGE. I did my research and invested in good quality skincare and I’m already noticing such a difference. You can read more about some of the products I’m using over in my feature on The Cut – which by the way I still can’t stop smiling about!!
2. Plan, plan, plan.
I’ve tried and tested it and the days I have a solid plan are the days I love the most. I mentioned in my last post that the transition from a 9-5 job to working for myself is something that definitely takes a little getting used to. My schedule is still a little all over the place but I’m learning that in order for each day to be both good & productive, I literally need to plan it to a tee. There’s definitely nothing glam about it, but now I plan out every single hour of the day. Not only does this make sure you get stuff done but it also makes sure you’re making the most out of every single day. Cringey Retro is back, I know I know, but honestly, imagine if this was your last ever day? Wouldn’t you want to make sure you made the most of it and didn’t spend 4 hour aimlessly scrolling through Instagram. So each night, I take out my notepad and plan out the day ahead. For example, today looked like: 6:15am – 7:00am: Workout in the Park, 7:00am – 8:00am: Get Ready + Breakfast, 8:00am – 10:00am: Emails + finalise today’s blog post…..and so on! As I said, nothing too glam about it, but it works. Time is the one single thing in life we all have an equal amount of, so if you use it wisely, I promise you every day will be a good one.
3. Get up earlier.
Following on from above, I really have learned that the earlier I get up, the happier I am. Now NOT at the time (poor Ciara had to force me to get up for our workout this morning, haha) but when it’s 8am and I’ve already achieved a few things, it literally makes me feel so good about the day ahead. There’s just something so productive about feeling ‘ahead’ of both yourself and the day.
4. Do the annoying things first.
I think it was a college lecturer who instilled this one into me but it’s one I really try my best to do every day. There are ALWAYS things you just don’t want to do and leaving them hang over you is never a good idea. I now try really hard to get my workout done in the morning (if I don’t, there’s a huge chance I just won’t do it at all) and also the things on my to-do list that I just hate the idea of. Getting them out of the way first thing makes everything else a million times easier.
5. Make your procrastination as productive as possible.
I mentioned in my recent post about my favourite snapchatters that I now ONLY follow & watch people on social media that have a positive effect on my day. Honestly, this has been one of the most effective changes I’ve made. My procrastination time is definitely (and unavoidably) spent on social media so I wanted to make sure that this time was somehow still productive. For me, watching snapchatters like @thebodycoach, @garyvee and @garypeppergirl inspire me to keep working that little bit harder and although the time spent watching them is my break, it’s still having a very positive effect on my work. That’s the key. So promise me, right now, that you’ll go and unfollow EVERYONE who puts you in a bad/complain-y mood. If you want to have a great day, you have to make sure every influence you are brining into it is also great.
6. Be cut-throat about the people you surround yourself with.
I talk about this one a lot here on Retro Flame and on my snapchat (retroflame1) and it’s something I’ll probably never shut up about to be honest. If you surround yourself with good people, I GUARANTEE you will have a happier day. You know when you’re in school/work and you’re literally forced to see the same people day in day out and not all these people are ones you would actually choose to hang out with, if you had the choice. This can be very annoying, yes? So when you DO have the choice, you have to make sure you use it. Sometimes I wonder if it’s a bad thing, but I’m someone who knows after about 10 seconds if I like somebody or not and if I don’t, I CANNOT fake it. Haha, trust me I’ve tried. Obviously, I’ll always be polite but I know straight away if I could see myself hanging out with this person again. I’m a big believer in having a small group of very close friends. 2-3 GOOD friends will always be better than having 10 who you won’t support you 100%. If your circle of friends is one that genuinely wants nothing but the best for you, this will have an unbelievable effect on your life.
7. Always go for the less stressful option.
This is one that some people might disagree with, but it’s one that works for me. Nowadays, if there are two options and one is a lot less stressful and adds a little calm to my day, I’ll always go with that one. Often, this might be the more expensive option – but if the benefits outweigh the cost, it’s worth it. For example, if there’s a direct flight that’s more expensive than a flight with a stop-over, I will still always go with the direct (no matter what the cost is). Yes you might save $100 with the connecting flight, but you lose time and also add stress. Make your life as easy as possible, whenever you can.
8. Take a step back & make the most of NOW.
Finally, we all need to just chill out a little bit and look at everything from the outside – in. We get so caught up in our daily lives that we genuinely forget to make the most of each and every day. We’re always thinking ahead to next week, next year, the next vacation, etc. and we totally forget to enjoy TODAY. Not even one of us knows exactly what’s around the corner, so why on earth wouldn’t you make the most of today? If today was your LAST EVER day, would you be happy about how you’ve spent it so far? I was in a store yesterday here in New York and one of the salespeople said to me, ‘Whatever you can do today, don’t wait til tomorrow to do it. Do it right this minute’. Granted it was do with buying a pair of Celine sunglasses, haha, but shopping aside – it’s a great mantra to keep in mind. So stop wishing away those Tuesdays & Thursdays and make every day a great day.
Hope you guys found this helpful! Let me know on snapchat (retroflame1) if you like these type of posts? I’m honestly so excited to be featured on The Cut today as it’s a website I’ve read since my interning days in New York. It’s part of the New York Magazine family and just feels very sentimental to me to be featured by such a renowned publication. New York continues to keep me on my toes but also keeps pleasantly surprising me! You can see the full feature HERE.
Hope you’ve all had a great week!