On Monday mornings let’s be honest, for the most part we are either pumped about the start of the work week or dreading it. Some weeks it’s like Christmas and other weeks we just want to keep driving by our work and hit Starbucks. Either way Monday mornings can be rough.
To make the experience more enjoyable, here are the first 5 things I try to do once I get to work…
Number #1: I try to always start out the week with others. As soon as I set up my laptop, the first thing I do everyday is hit the coffee maker with the rest of the people at our office. We’ve made it a tradition to have coffee at 9&2. You come in our office at 9&2, you’ll catch us doing life together. At the end of the day work is really about community. It’s about the people you work with. So we do our best to not get locked up in our offices and forget about each other. So what better way to start out the day with the ones you spend most of your day with?
Number #2: I try to clean up a bit. I grew up in a house full of guys. So we hardly ever cleaned or “straightened.” I joke that once I got married, Caley created a monster. Now I struggle to be creative or relaxed around chaos. So before the week begins I try to clean up last week’s mess. Files need to be filed. Books reshelved. Stacks of papers need to be sorted through. Since I do this every week this usually only takes a few minutes. When there is a clean slate for the week, I’m relaxed and can get more done.
Number #3: I try to always take some time to dream. Once I start on my to-do list for the day I know it will be all business. Even though I love what I get to do, it’s important to find time to dream.
Never let your to do list overwhelm your to dream list.
So what do I do? I hit twitter or read some blogs. I read a chapter or two in a book I have been dying to read. I get my journal out and think of some ways I can lead my teams to the next level. I only spend a half an hour or so doing this, but this weekly ritual enables me to enjoy the first few minutes of the week without the pressures of my job’s responsibilities. The second you stop purposely finding time to seek out inspiration you begin a downhill journey that leads no where good.
Number #4: I try to get a game plan together for the day. We use a to-do list management application called Action Method that enables us all to delegate and work smoothly together as a team. I have my entire to-do list online and I can have with me everywhere. Every morning I take it a step further and write out my action steps for the day on a sticky note broken down by morning and afternoon. (I use to do it hourly and it began to kill me. You can read about that here.)
Once I know what I have to do and I can see it in those small increments it enables be to feel more confident about the day. Some may see to-do lists as a hinderer of productivity, but I find if I know what I have to do, and when I plan on doing it, I get far more accomplished and feel less stressed. Who wants to leave work on Monday defeated? Not me…
Number #5: I try to not check my email until this point in my day. I get some kick back at work sometimes because I only check my email 2-3 times a day. The reason why I don’t leave it up on my computer is because if I did, it would suck the life out of me. Therefore, I check it in the morning and twice in the afternoon. This way I can stick to my game plane for the day and make any audibles necessary once I check my email. This way I don’t get sidetracked every hour with a email request. Checking your email constantly throughout the day creates a ton of noise and can kill your productivity. She’s a time-eating, production-devouring monster.
Monday mornings are never easy, so let’s make them awesome.
What are the first things you do once you get to work? Are they the best steps to take for the beginning of the week?