7 Ways To Live A More Productive And Efficient Life

7 Ways To Live A More Productive And Efficient Life

If you're struggling to get your life together, follow these seven steps for immediate improvement.
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We all aspire to be as focused and well put together as possible, but admittedly many of us fall short. I mean… Way short. The world of adulting is a confusing and taxing one, but by adhering to a few simple, yet essential steps, we can navigate our lives with purpose and ease.

1. Live by a set of principles

These principles can come from The Holy Bible, Randy Pausch’s “Last Lecture”, or the SCUM manifesto. Whatever it is that speaks to you, memorize the core values and apply them to your daily life. By having a list of principals, you add another layer of organization and guidance to your life, which will help you stay on the right track and not lose focus of what you want out of life.

2. Make a list of things you want to accomplish

Emmitt Smith once said, “It’s only a dream until you write it down, then it becomes a goal.” It is crucial to analyze what you want to have and where you want to be. Without any direction, you’ll forever be lost and confused about what your next move will be. By making a list of what you want to accomplish, you can identify what steps you will need to take in order to be successful. Having a narrow focus on your goals will help to keep you from wasting time and energy on circumstances that do not matter.

3. Wake up early

If you start your day any later than 8 a.m., you’re not a true adult. There are only 24 hours in a day—so make the most of them! By waking up early, you maximize the amount of time you are able to spend working on your priorities and goals (and the amount of free time you can have later). Not only that, but studies have shown that those who wake up early actually get better sleep, since their bodies are more in-tune with our body’s natural circadian rhythm.

4. Eat clean

Everyone in the world knows that junk food and fast food are bad for you, but most people continue to eat it. Always remember: you are what you eat. Eating unhealthy depletes your energy and damages your health. Those who don’t eat healthily are more prone to sickness (which means more money spent on doctor’s visits or money lost due to missing days of work) and are more unproductive. If you want to finesse life, you’re going to need high energy levels and good health. By living a healthy lifestyle, we can eliminate one element of stress from our already busy and overwhelming lives.

5. Read more

I’m inclined to believe that some people thought all of those summer reading assignments and out-of-school reading programs were just ploys developed by the education system to ruin our lives. Wrong. There is a reason that many schools encourage their students to read as much as possible—it’s because reading actually does increase your intelligence. Not only that, but by exposing yourself to new ideas, concepts, and vocabulary, you become wiser and learn skills necessary to be successful in life.

6. Limit your use of social media

Social media is entertaining and a great way to stay connected with people, but it is also filled with trash. Aside from world news and great opinion pieces, most of what is on social media is mindless drivel and nothing more than a distraction. By being on social media constantly, you waste time that could’ve been spent on activities that positively benefit your life. If being productive is something you’ve always struggled with, you can immediately improve this skill by cutting out social media.

7. Stop spending money

Okay, obviously we have to spend money — we do live in a capitalist society, after all — but that doesn’t mean we have to spend money on things that are not necessary. Cook all of your meals at home, only go clothes shopping once a month (if you have trouble coming up with outfits, check out project 333), do not — I repeat, DO NOT — spend money to go to parties or other functions.

Instead, gather all of your friends at home and have a kickback, or attend free events being held in your community. Money feels much better in your pocket than it does in the hands of someone else, so spend it wisely. By limiting how much money you spend, you won’t have to worry as much about how you’ll pay bills, and you’ll also have extra money you can use towards achieving your goals.

Life was never meant to be easy, but with self-discipline and effort, we can move through the world with greater ease. Follow these seven steps daily and say adios to the days of purposelessness and misdirection.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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Everything You Will Miss If You Commit Suicide

The world needs you.
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You won’t see the sunrise or have your favorite breakfast in the morning.

Instead, your family will mourn the sunrise because it means another day without you.

You will never stay up late talking to your friends or have a bonfire on a summer night.

You won’t laugh until you cry again, or dance around and be silly.

You won’t go on another adventure. You won't drive around under the moonlight and stars.

They’ll miss you. They’ll cry.

You won’t fight with your siblings only to make up minutes later and laugh about it.

You won’t get to interrogate your sister's fiancé when the time comes.

You won’t be there to wipe away your mother’s tears when she finds out that you’re gone.

You won’t be able to hug the ones that love you while they’re waiting to wake up from the nightmare that had become their reality.

You won’t be at your grandparents funeral, speaking about the good things they did in their life.

Instead, they will be at yours.

You won’t find your purpose in life, the love of your life, get married or raise a family.

You won’t celebrate another Christmas, Easter or birthday.

You won’t turn another year older.

You will never see the places you’ve always dreamed of seeing.

You will not allow yourself the opportunity to get help.

This will be the last sunset you see.

You’ll never see the sky change from a bright blue to purples, pinks, oranges and yellows meshing together over the landscape again.

If the light has left your eyes and all you see is the darkness, know that it can get better. Let yourself get better.

This is what you will miss if you leave the world today.

This is who will care about you when you are gone.

You can change lives. But I hope it’s not at the expense of yours.

We care. People care.

Don’t let today be the end.

You don’t have to live forever sad. You can be happy. It’s not wrong to ask for help.

Thank you for staying. Thank you for fighting.

Suicide is a real problem that no one wants to talk about. I’m sure you’re no different. But we need to talk about it. There is no difference between being suicidal and committing suicide. If someone tells you they want to kill themselves, do not think they won’t do it. Do not just tell them, “Oh you’ll be fine.” Because when they aren’t, you will wonder what you could have done to help. Sit with them however long you need to and tell them it will get better. Talk to them about their problems and tell them there is help. Be the help. Get them assistance. Remind them of all the things they will miss in life.

For help, call 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

Cover Image Credit: Brittani Norman

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4 Ways Clutter Is Negatively Affecting Your Health

Clutter affects your physical, emotional, and psychological health.

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If you're aware that your cluttered space is causing you stress and discomfort, it might be helpful to understand how and why clutter affects our health. When we clear our space we are more likely to feel at ease, relaxed, and tranquil. There is no better time to freshen your space than at the start of the new year when we are already setting new intentions and re-assessing goals and putting new ideas into motion.

1. Clutter produces dust and exacerbates allergies

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Have you ever gone through your closet or bookshelf, only to see the visible layers of dust and dirt that were hidden behind your items? Clutter gives dust and other environmental fibers a place to accumulate. If you find yourself sneezing, coughing, or tired and fatigued in your space, it might be time to de-clutter - your itchy eyes will thank you!

2. Lack of organization in your belongings leads to stress and anxiety

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I know I'm not the only one who has had the experience of needing an item before running out the door, only to realize it wasn't where you left it...and now you need to tear apart your entire room looking for it. Sound familiar? Having too much clutter leads to a disorganized space that provokes anxiety and stress and can have a strong, negative impact on your day to day life. Whoever came up with, "a place for everything and everything in its place" was definitely onto something.

3. Clutter puts your nervous system in overdrive

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Cluttered environments are taxing on the nervous system. The sensory overload prevents us from being able to relax and rest, and keeps us activated in our sympathetic nervous system, AKA "fight or flight". This means we're more likely to be on edge and hyper-aware than calm and relax when at home.

4. Living in a cluttered space impacts your mood and self-esteem

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Our brains thrive off of order and organization. When things are disordered and chaotic around us, it's natural to feel irritable and frustrated in response, lowering mood and reducing our self-esteem and self-worth. Rather than thinking about the things you want to get rid of when de-cluttering, focus on what things you want to keep and what you want to have in your immediate environment.

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