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Productivity boost how to start your day at 500 am

I have been an early-riser for over a year now. Monday through Friday I wake up at 5:00 AM without hitting the snooze button even once. I never take naps and rarely feel tired throughout the day. The following is my advice on how to start your day (everyday) at 5:00 AM.The idea of waking up early and starting the day at or before the sunrise is the desire of many people. Many highly successful people attribute their success, at least in part, to rising early. Early-risers have more productive mornings, get more done, and report less stress on average than “late-risers.” However, for the unaccustomed, the task of waking up at 5:00 AM can seem extremely daunting. This article will present five tips about how to physically wake up at 5:00 AM and how to get yourself mentally ready to have a productive day.

Many people simply “can’t” get up early because they are stuck in a routine. Whether this is getting to bed unnecessarily late, snoozing repetitively, or waiting until the absolute last possible moment before getting out of bed, “sleeping in” can easily consume your entire morning. The following tips will let you break the “sleeping in” routine.

Relocate your alarm clock.

Having an alarm clock too close to your bed is the number one reason people simply cannot get up in the morning. If your alarm clock is within arms reach of your bed, or if you can turn your alarm clock off without getting out of bed, you are creating an unnecessarily difficult situation for yourself. Before I became an early-riser, there were many times that I would turn off my alarm without even waking up enough to remember turning it off. I recommend moving your alarm clock far enough away from your bed that you have to get completely out of bed to turn it off. I keep my alarm clock in the bathroom. This may not be possible for all living arrangements, however, I use my cellphone as an alarm clock and putting it in the bathroom makes perfect sense. In order to turn off my alarm I have to get completely out of bed, and since going to the restroom and taking a shower are the first two things I do everyday, keeping the alarm clock in the bathroom streamlines the start of my morning.

I have been an early-riser for over a year now. Monday through Friday I wake up at 5:00 AM without hitting the snooze button even once. I never take naps and rarely feel tired throughout the day. The following is my advice on how to start your day (everyday) at 5:00 AM.The idea of waking up early and starting the day at or before the sunrise is the desire of many people. Many highly successful people attribute their success, at least in part, to rising early. Early-risers have more productive mornings, get more done, and report less stress on average than “late-risers.” However, for the unaccustomed, the task of waking up at 5:00 AM can seem extremely daunting. This article will present five tips about how to physically wake up at 5:00 AM and how to get yourself mentally ready to have a productive day.

Many people simply “can’t” get up early because they are stuck in a routine. Whether this is getting to bed unnecessarily late, snoozing repetitively, or waiting until the absolute last possible moment before getting out of bed, “sleeping in” can easily consume your entire morning. The following tips will let you break the “sleeping in” routine.

Relocate your alarm clock.

Having an alarm clock too close to your bed is the number one reason people simply cannot get up in the morning. If your alarm clock is within arms reach of your bed, or if you can turn your alarm clock off without getting out of bed, you are creating an unnecessarily difficult situation for yourself. Before I became an early-riser, there were many times that I would turn off my alarm without even waking up enough to remember turning it off. I recommend moving your alarm clock far enough away from your bed that you have to get completely out of bed to turn it off. I keep my alarm clock in the bathroom. This may not be possible for all living arrangements, however, I use my cellphone as an alarm clock and putting it in the bathroom makes perfect sense. In order to turn off my alarm I have to get completely out of bed, and since going to the restroom and taking a shower are the first two things I do everyday, keeping the alarm clock in the bathroom streamlines the start of my morning.

Scrap the snooze.

The snooze feature on all modern alarm clocks serves absolutely no constructive purpose. Don’t even try the “it helps me slowly wake up” lie. I recommend buying an alarm that does not have a snooze button. If you can’t find an alarm without a snooze button, never read the instructions so you will never know how long your snooze button lasts. Not knowing whether it waits 10 minutes or 60 minutes should be enough of a deterrent to get you to stop using it.

Change up your buzzer

If you use the same buzzer day in and day out, you begin to develop a tolerance to the sound. The alarm clock will slowly become less effective at waking you up over time. Most newer alarm clocks will let you set a different buzzer tone for the different days of the week. If you change your buzzer frequently, you will have an easier time waking up.

Make a puzzle

If you absolutely cannot wake up without repetitive snoozing, try making a puzzle for yourself. It doesn’t take rocket science to understand that the longer your alarm is going off, the more awake you will become. Try making your alarm very difficult to turn off by putting it under the sink, putting it under the bed, or better yet, by forcing yourself to complete a puzzle to turn it off. Try putting your alarm into a combination-locked box and make yourself put in the combination in order to turn off the alarm — it’s annoying, but extremely effective!

Get into a routine

Getting up at 5:00 AM is much easier if you are doing it Monday through Friday rather than sporadically during the week. I recommend setting an alarm once that repeats everyday. Also, going to bed at about the same time every night is an important factor to having a productive morning. Learn how much sleep you need to get in order to not feel exhausted the following day. Some people can get by on 4-6 hours while most need 7-8.

Have a reason

Make sure you have a specific reason to get up in the morning. Getting up at 5:00 AM just for the heck of it is a lot more difficult than if you are getting up early to plan your day, pay bills, go for a jog, get an early start on work, etc. I recommend finding something you want to do for yourself in the morning. It will be a lot easier to get up if you are guaranteed to do something fun for yourself — compare this to going on vacation. You probably have no problem waking up very early on vacation or during holidays. My goal every morning is to bring that excitement to the day by doing something fun for myself.

As I previously mentioned, I have been using these tips for a very long time. Joining the world of early-risers has been a great decision. I feel less stressed, I get more done, and I feel happier than I did when I was a late-riser. If you follow these tips you can become an early-riser, too. Do you have any tips that I didn’t mention? What works best for you? Let us know in the comments.

CamTrader brings you human interest articles from around the web to spice up your day. We hope you like it.

Productivity boost how to start your day at 500 am

Franchise Your Business

Productivity boost how to start your day at 500 am

You’ll never outrun your challenges, no matter how hard you try. We live in a digital age and of course, there are tools that will help you stay productive even when you feel overwhelmed. Let’s talk about practical, low-tech steps you can to take to stay motivated and productive when faced with big issues.

1. Find your balance.

Productive people tend to find avenues to take a break and recharge their mental powers. Rest your brain by sleeping, exercising or pursuing an interest outside of work. Pick an activity for your mind, body and soul. This can include meditation; listening to soothing music, watching your favorite movie or going out to meet with friends.

When you engage in activities that make you happy, you tend to see your challenges from a different perspective and focus on the bright side of the world that exists around you.

The ability to strike a reasonable work/life balance is just one of the lessons the rest of us can learn from millennials. We need to reject the notion that working ourselves to death is a virtue. Humans are more productive when they are rested, refreshed and rejuvenated. Did we learn nothing from eating pizza and ramen noodles while cramming for finals at the last minute?

2. Embrace the unknown.

All successful people take risks. Do something that makes you feel uncomfortable. Go ahead, speak in front of a crowd or make a presentation to people who you know will be against your proposition. Rather than let your worries take you down, use them as positive energy to surge forward.

Uncertainty makes most people nervous. When you work as an independent contractor, as I do, you have to learn to step out of your comfort zone and jump off an occasional cliff.

3. Surround yourself with positive.

Having positive people around you keeps you motivated and on track. Negative people, on the other hand, sap your energy and infect you with their negativity. Positive people feed your own positive attitude; which lifts your spirits and boosts your energy.

Even negative news raises your stress level. If only three minutes of negative news can affect your entire day. maybe it’s time to start your day with something that makes you feel good.

4. Make an action plan.

Plans are my secret weapon. When I am overwhelmed and it seems like there is no way to achieve my goals, I know it’s time to strategize. My plan usually revolves around the amount of work I need to accomplish in order to meet unexpected bills or finish before a deadline.

Strategy allows you to break projects into manageable tasks, set a timeline, and decide whether you need to hire new office staff to help you get everything done. In my case, this might mean outsourcing tasks like finding sources or facts for an ebook or long article, asking my tribe of other freelance creatives to help me come up with ideas, or handing off task management to a virtual assistant. Outsourcing the repetitive, time-consuming stuff lets me concentrate on the big, creative stuff. Even after paying my assistants, I make more money because more work gets done.

You are far more motivated and productive when you have a workable strategy in place to tackle your obstacles.

5. Solicit positive advice.

Did I mention my tribe? Sometimes we need help. Playing the Lone Ranger isn’t going to work. You need to find the right people to help you with your challenges and reach out to them. So practice the three step process:

  1. Seek the right person.
  2. Ask for help.
  3. Share how important their help is to take you in the right direction.

Successful people tend to have the right team of people to help them get through tough times. I bounce idea off other writers, social media experts, business people, marketers, SEOs and other contacts all the time. I invite my friends to do the same. I can’t imagine working without that collaboration.

6. Practice gratitude.

Whatever situation we are in, there is always something to be grateful for. Look back at your actions daily and focus on the things that have added value to your world. It doesn’t have to be the big things. Find time to think about the little things that enrich your life on a daily basis.

Today, for example, Florida’s winter weather makes me feel happy an energized. It’s about 75. We had a cold front.

7. Keep learning.

Knowledge is power. To attain the success in any industry, you have to be willing to learn and discover those things that help you deal with troublesome situations. Lack of knowledge, or outdated knowledge, can be devastating to your continued success.

The idea of waking up early and starting the day at or before the sunrise is what Many highly successful people attribute their success to

The following are the best tips how to start your day (everyday) at 5:00 AM.

The idea of waking up early and starting the day at or before the sunrise is the desire of many people. Many highly successful people attribute their success, at least in part, to rising early.

Early-risers have more productive mornings, get more done, and report less stress on average than “late-risers.” However, for the unaccustomed, the task of waking up at 5:00 AM can seem extremely daunting.

This article will present five tips about how to physically wake up at 5:00 AM and how to get yourself mentally ready to have a productive day.

Many people simply “can’t” get up early because they are stuck in a routine. Whether this is getting to bed unnecessarily late, snoozing repetitively, or waiting until the absolute last possible moment before getting out of bed, “sleeping in” can easily consume your entire morning. The following tips will let you break the “sleeping in” routine.

Relocate your alarm clock.

Having an alarm clock too close to your bed is the number one reason people simply cannot get up in the morning. If your alarm clock is within arms reach of your bed, or if you can turn your alarm clock off without getting out of bed, you are creating an unnecessarily difficult situation for yourself.

Before I became an early-riser, there were many times that I would turn off my alarm without even waking up enough to remember turning it off. I recommend moving your alarm clock far enough away from your bed that you have to get completely out of bed to turn it off.

I keep my alarm clock in the bathroom. This may not be possible for all living arrangements, however, I use my cellphone as an alarm clock and putting it in the bathroom makes perfect sense.

In order to turn off my alarm I have to get completely out of bed, and since going to the restroom and taking a shower are the first two things I do everyday, keeping the alarm clock in the bathroom streamlines the start of my morning.

Scrap the snooze.

The snooze feature on all modern alarm clocks serves absolutely no constructive purpose. Don’t even try the “it helps me slowly wake up” lie. I recommend buying an alarm that does not have a snooze button. If you can’t find an alarm without a snooze button, never read the instructions so you will never know how long your snooze button lasts. Not knowing whether it waits 10 minutes or 60 minutes should be enough of a deterrent to get you to stop using it.

Change up your buzzer

If you use the same buzzer day in and day out, you begin to develop a tolerance to the sound. The alarm clock will slowly become less effective at waking you up over time. Most newer alarm clocks will let you set a different buzzer tone for the different days of the week. If you change your buzzer frequently, you will have an easier time waking up.

Make a puzzle

If you absolutely cannot wake up without repetitive snoozing, try making a puzzle for yourself. It doesn’t take rocket science to understand that the longer your alarm is going off, the more awake you will become. Try making your alarm very difficult to turn off by putting it under the sink, putting it under the bed, or better yet, by forcing yourself to complete a puzzle to turn it off. Try putting your alarm into a combination-locked box and make yourself put in the combination in order to turn off the alarm — it’s annoying, but extremely effective!

Get into a routine

Getting up at 5:00 AM is much easier if you are doing it Monday through Friday rather than sporadically during the week. I recommend setting an alarm once that repeats everyday. Also, going to bed at about the same time every night is an important factor to having a productive morning.

Learn how much sleep you need to get in order to not feel exhausted the following day. Some people can get by on 4-6 hours while most need 7-8.

Have a reason

Make sure you have a specific reason to get up in the morning. Getting up at 5:00 AM just for the heck of it is a lot more difficult than if you are getting up early to plan your day, pay bills, go for a jog, get an early start on work, etc.

I recommend finding something you want to do for yourself in the morning. It will be a lot easier to get up if you are guaranteed to do something fun for yourself — compare this to going on vacation.

You probably have no problem waking up very early on vacation or during holidays. My goal every morning is to bring that excitement to the day by doing something fun for myself.

As I previously mentioned, I have been using these tips for a very long time. Joining the world of early-risers has been a great decision. I feel less stressed, I get more done, and I feel happier than I did when I was a late-riser.

If you follow these tips you can become an early-riser, too. Do you have any tips that I didn’t mention? What works best for you? Let us know in the comments.

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    Want to Boost Productivity? Start Your Mornings at This Ungodly Hour

    Apple CEO Tim Cook starts his day at 3:45 a.m. Here’s why you shouldn’t miss the boat on this new trend.

    Productivity boost how to start your day at 500 am

    What I didn’t know is that there’s a recent productivity trend on the rise. A number of successful leaders and entrepreneurs, I have found, are declaring that they are most productive while the majority of us are still under the covers in a deep sleep.

    The 4 a.m. productivity shift.

    A new report published in the Wall Street Journal says that 4 a.m. may be the most productive time of the day. The reasons behind the increased productivity at such an ungodly hour include:

    • Minimal distractions (like kids or work) before the sun rises.
    • No one is emailing or texting you.
    • There’s less to see on social media.

    Productivity in this context may not necessarily be work-related. The trend seems to be pointing toward reserving this “sacred time” for things that will energize you and set you up for success the rest of the day — self-care, exercise, family time, personal growth, and spiritual connection.

    Among the most famous executives who are coming out to say 4 a.m. is the way to go:

    • Tim Cook: The Apple CEO actually starts his morning routine at 3:45 a.m.
    • Sallie Krawcheck: The chief executive of Ellevest has written, “I’m never more productive than at 4 a.m.”
    • Richard Branson: The billionaire entrepreneur actually wakes up a tad later, at 5 a.m., to exercise and spend time with family. He says it “puts me in a great mind frame before getting down to business.”
    • Michelle Gass: The former president of Starbucks EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Russia, Africa) and now chief merchandising and customer officer at Kohl’s department stores, sets her alarm for 4:30 a.m. to go running.
    • David Cush: The Virgin America CEO wakes up at 4:15 a.m to call business associates on the East Coast, then he’ll listen to sports radio, read the paper and hit the gym.

    There is a tradeoff. Getting up before the crack of dawn means falling asleep earlier–much earlier. That could mean less social time with friends or downtime to catch that important playoff night game.

    Peter Shankman, a 44-year-old entrepreneur and speaker based in New York City says in the Wall Street Journal article, “I’m exhausted, but in a good way, which means I won’t have the energy to do something stupid like eat two gallons of Ben & Jerry’s at 10:30 p.m.”

    10 smart hacks that will encourage your new morning shift.

    If you’re wondering what to do with your early-morning time that will get your day off to a productive start, I suggest these 10 things.

    Oprah Winfrey and Arianna Huffington both start their morning with 20 to 30 minutes of meditation. Oprah says, “only from that space can you create your best work and your best life.” Setting aside this little morning ritual can make the rest of your day seem manageable. You’ll notice a weight come off your shoulders.

    2. Start with an early workout.

    Exercise is an obvious running theme (no pun intended) here. Entrepreneur Russ Perry jumps on the first gym class of the day, at 5 a.m. “I’ve actually made some friends with similar schedules and lifestyles,” Perry told Journal.

    3. Do this breathing exercise.

    Shawn Achor, Harvard-trained happiness researcher and best-selling author of The Happiness Advantage, tells us to breathe and watch our breath go in and out for two minutes. He says do this every day. This allows your brain to focus on one thing at a time and, Achor says, it will improve levels of happiness and drop stress levels.

    4. Sleep in your workout gear.

    Shankman also told Journal he sleeps in his gym clothes and puts his sneakers on within 10 seconds of waking up. “It’s very hard to go back to sleep once your shoes are on.”

    5. Find a reason to get up.

    It sounds like a cliché but: What gets you up in the morning? Really, I’m asking. Don’t get up at 4 a.m. for the heck of it. Have a plan–something you want to do for yourself, preferably something fun or stimulating that will bring excitement to your day.

    6. Change the location of your alarm clock.

    Having your alarm clock (or smartphone) next to your bed and within arm’s length is the number one reason most people can’t get up in the morning. How many times have you turned off your alarm without being alert enough to know that you turned it off? Exactly. Best place for it is in the bathroom since you’re headed there anyway to shower and do your morning “business.”

    7. Imagine what you could do with an extra hour.

    This is a creativity exercise, so picture in your mind: what would you do if you had an extra hour in the day? Would you use it to exercise? Read more? Cook breakfast for the kids? Water your garden? Take the dog for that long walk you know it will love?

    8. Whatever you do, don’t skip a healthy breakfast.

    Trade your bowl of sugary cereal for something healthy like oatmeal or a protein berry smoothie (have all the parts cut up the night before and ready to be blended). You’ll avoid being tired and hungry later when the sugar jolt wears off. Try fiber-rich fruits and vegetables and lean protein options that will keep you going until lunch time. The Beachbody Blog offers these excellent meal choices to fuel your morning.

    9. Set three goals for the day.

    Again, don’t think daily tasks on your work to-do list. The most successful people start the day by putting their mental focus on something that will make them better. What will grow you, give you more energy, make you happier, and set the stage for an epic productive day?

    Productivity boost how to start your day at 500 am

    Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox

    Productivity boost how to start your day at 500 am

    Everyone loves to swap tips about how to make an epic morning routine, but when it comes to implementation, there are a few easy whoopsies that are far too easy to make. Hitting the snooze button, starting your day from the bed and sacrificing your morning productivity time for a late-night Netflix marathon are all potential ways to sabotage the potential your mornings have.

    And potential, indeed. A growing body of research is finding that mornings are actually the most optimal time for you to ideate or be creative. A study in the Thinking & Reasoning Journal reported that the perceived-to-be least optimal times for thinking and creativity (such as first thing in the morning, when you’re groggy and still on your first cup of coffee) are actually the most optimal times. “Results showed consistently greater insight problem-solving performance during non-optimal times of day compared to optimal times of day,” the research stated.

    So, the cost of making mistakes in your morning routine is quite high. Imagine the groundbreaking ideas for your business, next book, or even next family vacation that could surface in the light of the morning! Make sure you aren’t making the following mistakes that will cost you productivity and peace.

    Mistake 1: Diving out of bed the second the alarm goes off

    For sure, this mistake is done with good intentions — as a bit of a defense mechanism, if you will. If you force yourself to fly out of bed the moment you hear the dreaded alarm, you may be less likely to lay there and break into a mental argument about whether or not the morning commute can afford you an extra five minutes of snooze time. But, this drastic action disconnects you from your body immediately. A better alternative? Take just a few minutes to stretch and elongate your body as much as possible.

    This concept is inspired by researcher Amy Cuddy, who coined the term “Power Pose.” When your body stretches out, you’ll actually feel more confident. In addition to this mood boost, a stretch first thing (even by putting your arms into a V shape, which Cuddy says boosts incredible happiness) increases your blood flow to all areas of your body.

    After a few minutes of stretching, take your time getting out of bed and going about your immediate morning routine: making coffee, brushing your teeth and getting dressed. Then, consider doing the Power Pose again while standing up, or even during your morning shower!

    Mistake 2: Checking your phone immediately

    A Lifestyle of Mobile Consumers Survey reported that 1 out of every 4 young adults checks their phones within one minute of waking up. It’s tempting, for sure — especially nowadays, when there is so much information on your email, social media and in your text messages. But Glenn Lundy, the host and founder of the incredibly popular #RiseandGrind podcast, says this is a major mistake.

    “Neither your mind nor your body are ready for that type of stimulation first thing,” Lundy shared. “When you’re groggily waking up, it’s important to focus on presence and gratitude, rooting yourself in your own body through some morning movement and writing down your goals.” These pieces of advice are from his #TheMorning5 67 day challenge, which has been taken up by tens of thousands of individuals across the globe.

    “Remember that there’s nothing on your phone that can’t wait for you,” Lundy explained. “And, you’ll be better equipped to handle any work crisis or exciting news when you’ve fully woken up and completed a healthy morning routine.”

    Mistake 3: Sleeping in too late

    Now, we aren’t telling you which hours you should or shouldn’t be sleeping, but consider this. If you know you’re tempted to check your phone first thing because you feel like you’re missing something, imagine how much that temptation will reside if you wake up earlier than most do. There’s something to this. A study by Amerisleep shared the stunning differences between early risers and late risers in productivity, salary, and general quality of life.

    The study reported that “people who get themselves out of bed at the crack of dawn — yes, we’re talking about 4 am — responded they felt “highly productive” 71% of the time. Compare that to people who snooze until 11 am, the least likely group to report being productive. They’re only productive 36% of the time.”

    This productivity also translates to money, as the study found that the early risers made an average of $15,000 more each year than the late sleepers.

    Ultimately, what works best in your morning routine does come down to personal preference. This is an invitation to experiment. We all have the same 24 hours, and we all have a “morning routine,” whether it’s set in stone and followed habitually, or something that looks different every single day. Consider that the first hour of your day sets the tone for the rest of your day, and therefore, is likely the most important time to take full advantage of. Stretch out, keep that phone turned off, and consider rising earlier than you’re used to. The proof in both productivity and peace will reveal itself.

    Productivity boost how to start your day at 500 am

    Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox

    Productivity boost how to start your day at 500 am

    When you are able to master productivity, you become extremely focused, and it’s much easier to remain in the zone, which can make even the most difficult tasks manageable.

    Enhancing your productivity is simple if you are willing to prepare — the little extra time and effort can go a long way. If you want to improve your productivity I suggest you find time to fit these very simple tasks into your daily schedule.

    1. Develop a routine and stick to it.

    I have a routine that I have been following for some time now, and it involves getting up at 5 a.m. every day to start my day. It enables me to get my workout in and gives me a two-hour window of time that is distraction-free to hammer out tasks. When 9 a.m. rolls around, I am way ahead of the game.

    I didn’t just magically create this routine in my head one day. It was the result of trying several different things and then finding out what worked the best for me. It took some time to get used to it, but now my routine has carried over to the weekends as well. It takes dedication and discipline, but I can promise you that identifying your own winning routine will result in a large productivity boost.

    2. Set three times for operation ‘inbox zero.’

    If you attempt to respond to every single email that hits your inbox in real-time, then you would get absolutely nothing accomplished during the day. Something that has worked for me, is dedicating three times throughout the day, to attack my inbox with the goal of achieving “inbox zero” every time.

    Sometimes you will have urgent email that needs to be addressed outside of your designated times, which is understandable. “It’s important that you know what emails can wait and what ones require your immediate attention. Once you master this you will be more productive when it comes to inbox management,” says Russell Nicolet, personal injury attorney and founder of Nicolet Law.

    3. Create a large, visual to-do list.

    You have undoubtedly heard that creating a to-do list is key — but in order for it to be effective, it needs to stare you right in the face all day. Rather than writing on sticky notes or little pads of paper, hang the largest whiteboard you can fit on your office wall and keep it updated daily.

    Personally, I find that always having my to-do list directly in my line of sight keeps me focused on the tasks I need to knock out. I color-code my to-do list tasks based on what category they fall under, and find great satisfaction in erasing them one-by-one daily as I knock them out.

    4. Prep your workstation for the next day.

    It’s very hard to be productive in a messy work environment. If you aren’t organized, you simply waste time trying to find things as you navigate through the mess. During the day, things are misplaced and your desk can turn into a disaster zone. If you ignore it, it will just get worse. I spend five minutes at the end of the day to clean up and ensure that I start the next day with a perfectly prepped desk and work area.

    “A cluttered work area is distracting and it takes away from what you should be doing — working. A clean area allows you to stay focused on what needs to get done. Moving stuff around to make room or adding to them mess is a productivity killer,” says Andrew Lanoie, CEO and founder of Four Peaks Capital Partners.

    The same applies to your virtual work area — rather than having files and documents scattered all over, organize everything within a single Dropbox account.

    5. Eat six smaller meals daily.

    I got pretty serious about my health and fitness a few years ago. Working out daily gives me the energy to power through each day, even when I get minimal sleep. Along my fitness journey I really started to play around with my diet, and quickly learned that abandoning the traditional three meals a day routine in favor of six smaller ones was more beneficial.

    I never have a drop in my energy level, and I know for a fact this has helped raise my productivity to a new level. “Eating several smaller protein-packed meals throughout the day keeps your body fueled with energy and it also helps kick-start your metabolism,” explains Andrew Ryan, founder of The Protein Pizza.

    Productivity boost how to start your day at 500 am

    Time to step up your writing productivity

    Could you write 10,000 words a day? Charles Sheehan-Miles, based in Massachusetts, USA, shares top tips for indie authors to boost their writing productivity, drawing on his own experience. So successful was his own strategy to self-publish more books that he now writes full-time.

    A couple of years ago, I realized that if I was going to have any success as an indie author, I was going to have to step up my game in a big way. The thing was, I’d been in the indie world for a long time. I self-published my first novel in 2001 (via a vanity press), then later got my rights back and republished it, along with a second novel, in 2007.

    It took me five years to write the first book, nearly 10 to write the second, and five years to write my third book. I’d made a total of ten thousand dollars for my entire career. It was either make some changes or consider another career path.

    At that point in the time—the summer of 2012—I noticed there was a key factor which was consistently helping indie authors hit the charts, build followings and make careers in their writing. What those key writers had in common was that they were prolific, some of them putting out novels every three or four months.

    So I decided it was time to make some changes. I did research. Googled. I looked for advice for upping your writing productivity. I examined dictation, lucid dream-states and self-hypnosis. But the one idea I came across was on the blog of sci-fi author Rachel Aaron, who wrote a blog entry titled “How I went from Writing 2,000 Words a Day to 10,000 Words A Day.”

    Could You Write 10,000 Words A Day?

    Ten thousand words a day? That’s what I managed in a month. My most productive writing sessions ever, up to that point, were 1,000 words, and my typical daily output was closer to 500. This whole concept was impossible. Insane.

    In her blog (she later published a book about it which you can find here), Rachel talks about what she says are three core requirements to be able to write quickly: knowledge, enthusiasm, and time.

    • The knowledge component is simple: instead of struggling through, trying to write on the fly, sit down and first and block out your scene. Know what you are going to write before you write it.
    • The second requirement, enthusiasm, is also simple: write what you feel passionately about. If you don’t want to write it, other people probably won’t want to read it.
    • Finally, time: she recommends finding the times of day, locations, etc. where you can write consistently.

    My Writing Routine – Before and After

    In those days I didn’t get a consistent time to write, except between 4:30 and 5:30 am every day before work. Otherwise it is whenever I could squeeze it in, often after dinner and before bed. The other two requirements, however, I could do something about. And I did.

    The first book I wrote after reconsidering my writing process – Just Remember to Breathe – was completed in 14 days. Admittedly it was a short novel: 73,000 words. It has also been, to date, my most successful novel, with over 100,000 copies sold in three languages.

    The key question facing me after that book was, could I do it again? Could I write quickly, and still write a decent novel. I wasn’t able to replicate the 14 day experience again, but I’ve been able to consistently write novels in 2 months, followed by a month editing, which means that since 2012 I’ve been publishing full length books every quarter or so.

    5 Top Tips for Writing Productivity

    So here are a few brief tips on how I’ve been able to consistently manage this kind of pace:

    • Be passionate about your story and your characters.
    • Have a road map. Sometimes the story will go off course, and it’s good to follow your instincts there. But I keep my map handy, and it’s helpful when I need to regroup and figure out where a story went wrong.
    • For me, going to bed thinking about the story is critical. During my most productive periods, the last thing I do before bed is write the first couple of paragraphs of the next scene. That way, when I wake up, I am ready to go.
    • When I’m driving, I listen to my book playlists and think about the story..
    • Finally, and this is the big one, don’t force my way through when I get stuck. Instead, diagnose the problem, move back, fix it, and move on.

    So, how has this impacted my career?

    The answer is simple. One year ago I quit my job and became a full time writer. I now make a decent living doing what I love, which is telling stories.

    Do you have further tips to share? Feel free to add them in the comments!

    Productivity boost how to start your day at 500 amOur suggested tweet to share this post: “5 Top Tips to Boost #Writing #Productivity by @CSheehanMiles for @IndieAuthorALLi: https://selfpublishingadvice.org/writing-productivity/”

    Productivity boost how to start your day at 500 amFor many, anxiety is the enemy. It can make you feel nervous and afraid and can prevent you from taking actions that will move you forward in life. People often look at anxiety as something they need to get rid of or prevent, but what if that isn’t the case? Would your relationship to anxiety change if you could look at is as a friend rather than an enemy?

    Anxiety itself may not be the problem; not knowing what to do with it may be the main issue. Anxiety is the body’s natural response to stress. If you can accept that some anxiety is inevitable, you may be able to learn how to work with it instead of against it.

    Here are seven creative ways to turn anxiety into productivity.

    1. Use the Adrenaline

    Anxiety gives you adrenaline. Stimulants such as caffeine and nicotine can cause physical symptoms similar to anxiety symptoms in the body by increasing heart rate and constricting the blood vessels. Coffee is a popular productivity booster for this reason. If you’re feeling anxious about an upcoming project, speech, or other task, try utilizing the extra energy to help improve performance and increase productivity.

    Many sports psychologists and coaches generally want their athletes to be a little anxious rather than relaxed right before a game. Researchers say there is a “sweet spot”—a moderate amount of anxiety that actually helps people perform better by keeping them on their toes. Studies have shown learning increases when stress hormones are slightly elevated. The Yerkes-Dodson curve—originally developed by Harvard psychologists Robert Yerkes and John Dodson in 1908—illustrates how arousal enhances performance up to a certain point, but too much anxiety may hinder performance.

    2. Reframe Your Anxiety

    Anxiety is not always a negative thing. Telling yourself anxiety is bad and trying to avoid it may end up making the problem worse. Rather than saying “I’m so nervous,” try saying “I’m so excited” instead.

    Anxiety is the body’s natural response to stress. If you can accept that some anxiety is inevitable, you may be able to learn how to work with it instead of against it. A research study conducted at Harvard Business School found saying “I am excited” out loud can improve performance. In order to increase anxiety levels during the study, Dr. Alison Woods Brooks told students their persuasive speeches would be recorded. Before delivering the speech, students were instructed to say “I am excited” or “I am calm” out loud to themselves.

    Those who said “I am excited” gave longer speeches that were more competent, relaxed, and persuasive than those who said “I am calm.”

    Because anxiety and excitement are both emotional states characterized by high arousal, Dr. Woods suggests it may be easier to reframe symptoms of anxiety as excitement rather than trying to be calm. When you’re feeling anxious, you often focus on potential threats. In these situations, it is more productive to try to reframe the situation and focus on potential opportunities instead of threats.

    3. Accept that Anxiety May Be Inevitable

    Some situations or tasks may always give you some amount of anxiety. Rather than trying to avoid these tasks or diminish the emotion, it may be best just to accept the feeling as part of the experience.

    The more you view anxiety as routine and normal, the less power it can have over you. Even successful people experience fear. They just choose to find a way to persevere in spite of it. Try to remember that anxiety and fear are natural reactions. If you’re able to, choose to focus on the task in front of you rather than the fear related to it.

    4. Channel the Anxiety into Motivation

    Find a Therapist for Anxiety

    Anxiety often results from some sort of apprehension about the future. Perhaps you’re worrying about the outcome of something you really care about. Remind yourself why it matters to you in the first place, and let that drive you forward. Anxiety has the ability to make you more alert, focused, and productive, and you have the ability to use that to your advantage.

    5. Distinguish Productive Worry from Unproductive Worry

    Anxiety can be either productive or unproductive. Unproductive anxiety usually amounts to worrying about things that are out of your control and may lead to an anxiety attack. If you can’t do anything to change the situation, you might be wasting your time and energy by worrying about it.

    On the contrary, productive anxiety generally amounts to worry about things you do have the power to change. If you are worried about a presentation you have to give to your boss, you can acknowledge your anxiety and take the steps necessary to help you be best prepared for the presentation.

    6. Decatastrophize Your Anxiety

    Anxiety often stems from fear. Try to decatastrophize your anxiety by asking yourself what it is you are truly afraid of.

    What is the worst possible outcome, and what are the odds of that actually occurring? When you realize even the worst outcome isn’t as bad as it may seem in your head, your anxiety may start to decrease.

    7. Practice Centering

    Centering is a pre-performance technique originally designed by sports psychologist Dr. Robert Nideffer in the 1970s. Centering is a 7-step process that can help you quiet the mind, focus, and gain poise.

    • Step 1: Choose a focal point. Select a focal point that is below eye level to minimize distractions.
    • Step 2: Set a clear intention. Your intention is your goal. What task are you planning on doing in spite of your anxiety? Whether it is a performance, work task, or creative project, clearly state your intention in positive language.
    • Step 3: Breathe mindfully. Use diaphragmatic breathing to calm the body and deactivate the body’s fight or flight response.
    • Step 4: Scan and release tension. When you engage in more negative thinking, the muscles in the body have a tendency to tighten. Scan the body slowly for tension, relaxing the muscles one by one.
    • Step 5: Find your center. In many Eastern philosophies and traditions, it is believed the body has a specific location where the center of a person’s energy rests. By finding your center, you may begin to feel more grounded, calm, and self-assured.
    • Step 6: Visualize success. Visualize yourself accomplishing your intended goal. Activate the right brain by imagining what it would look like, feel like, and smell like to achieve your desired results.
    • Step 7: Direct your energy appropriately. By the time you reach the last step, you are more likely to be calm enough to channel the energy appropriately. Rather than trying to rid yourself of the anxiety completely, you can use it as inspiration.

    Anxiety can be both normal and healthy in small amounts. If it becomes debilitating and is negatively impacting your life, a qualified therapist may be able to help you learn how to deal with anxiety.