{Operation 118} A life changing strategy

Last week I wrote a post relating to time management. In it, I drew a table of what my perfect day-to-day routine/schedule would look like. Between then and now, I’ve set the new routine in motion and the results have been quite astonishing!

An article in the Harvard Business Review reveals 9 things that successful people do differently. The first point talks about setting specific goals. It’s all too easy to write down: Sleep early, drink more water, save more, eat less (as I’ve done many times before) and then eventually find that none of these goals actually reached any level of success, even with the best of my intentions. So, with last week’s table I got more specific with my approach and I’m already seeing a difference in my day to day life.

“New, positive habits have more chance of success when they are most rewarding”

Further below is a comparison chart with terrible habits I had 2 weeks ago, compared with what I’m doing now, and all this was born from the {Operation 118} project.

As most brides work during the day, so do I. Wedding planning can easily become a second full time job. I discovered a few weeks ago, that it would be a necessary step for me to make a few changes, in order to juggle everything. If I wanted this project to be successful I was going to have to immerse myself completely, dedicate the time and effort required whilst remaining in a positive frame of mind and not disregard my other projects.

In order for this to take place I set specific goals, changed specifics about my daily routine as well as diet, and reinforced my positive behavior with positive affirmations.

[ My life changing strategy involved a more rejuvenated version of *Pavlov’s Dog theory. Mostly where I’m half Pavlov and half drooling dog and the bell is my conscience.
*(Excerpt: In 1889 Pavlov began experiments with dogs that proved their reflexes could be conditioned by external stimuli. Specifically, after they were conditioned by the ringing of a bell at feeding time, they would reflexively salivate upon hearing the bell, whether or not food was present.)]

Below is a bog standard and very average day for me. It shows bad habits I gave up and the good habits I’m adopting now, as well as the positive reinforcement for each change I’ve made. I’ve been on this new plan for the last 2 weeks.

Then Now Positive Reinforcement
Wake up at 8am with fatigue and the loudest-most annoying alarm going off in my ear! Get ready as quick as I can and dash off to work. Wake up between 5-6am with my favourite song as my alarm Better alarm to wake me as well as feeling rested and calm knowing I have lots of time before getting to work
Get dressed and jog down to the beach and back home 30-40mins (whilst listening to my favourite music) Exercise makes me feel good plus I get to see the seafront without crowds of people + seeing the sun rise over the sea is awesome. I capture these moments with my Iphone
Get home/ shower and get ready for work/ drink a glass or two of water I take my time to get ready and experiment more with my hair and make-up because I have the time to do so. My skin is more hydrated with all the water I’ve been drinking!
Finish Blog Posts/ Edit pictures/ Plan the day My mind is fresh after the jog and shower and I have no problem with reading things more than twice to make sure it’s exactly how I want it. I create new content with a clear mind and start the day with a blank page.
Check e-mails and previous day’s stats + orders
Work on current project or brainstorm new ideas/ content (if there’s time)
Arrive to work at 9:05am and think about coffee Arrive to work 8am and think about tea (Drink water) I feel no guilt at all. I made it to work on time. I’m not drinking anything that’s fattening and I still feel fresh as a daisy
Buy a Cappuccino with 3 sugars Make a cup of Lemon and Ginger tea with honey
Have a super delicious croissant from Cocoa (the best French patisserie in Brighton) Have a bowl of Granola cereal with fruit and nuts if I didn’t feel like it earlier. (Drink water) I’m full after my breakfast rather than craving another buttery croissant or a bacon sandwich.
Mid-morning go grab a sandwich from Tesco’s and day dream about lunch Mid-morning have another cup of tea and smile because I’m not hungry (Drink water)
Lunch- Have another sandwich from the nearest deli / Chinese food across the road / fresh soup with buttered bread always with another cappuccino with 3 sugars Lunch- Sliced Chicken breast salad / grilled chicken wings with leafy green salad from Nando’s / an ‘almost’ home-cooked meal from Foodillic / my own pre-prepared wrap with healthy yet filling ingredients. (Drink water) My lunch is delicious, healthy and I don’t have to worry about my weight whilst I eat. Whatever I have for Lunch will be less than 500 calories. That’s a ¼ of my daily allowance. That’s what the jog is for each morning. Enjoy!
Mid afternoon snack – Babybel Cheese or cookies or nuts or a slice of chocolate cake with another cappuccino with 3 sugars Mid afternoon snack – Nuts or a piece of fruit with a cup of herbal tea [OPTIONAL]
Get home at 5:30 and prepare dinner. Steak/ Pork/ Fish/ Lamb with Salad + another coffee Get home at 4:30 and prepare dinner. Fish/Chicken with salad (Drink water) Dinner is light and low in fat, carbs and sodium. Still yummy!
Edit photos/write blog posts/catch up with e-mails/check FB+ Twitter from 6:30 to 12pm and have a cheese or cold meat snack at 10pm with another cup of coffee to keep me going. 11:45 Get ready for bed. Edit Photos/ Start blog posts/ catch up with e-mails/ check FB + Twitter for 2 hours. (Drink water) Whatever I don’t finish now can wait till the morning. It’s ok.
Read for an hour (Drink water) Reading helps with the structuring of my dreams. Plus I feel so productive learning something new every day. I highlight or write down anything that I definitely want to remember tomorrow.
12-1am Relax and watch one of my favourite TV shows Get ready for bed then relax and watch my favourite TV show for an hour (Drink water) Watching mindless and entertaining TV before bed helps me unwind.
Sleep at 1am Sleep at 9am or 10pm at the very latest I’m feeling good knowing it was a productive day that brought me one step closer to my ultimate goal.

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