How to Make Tomorrow More Productive

In part 1 of making your day more productive, we established the importance of nutrition and how what you eat in the morning can determine the energy and alertness you have as you go through the rest of the day.

Click HERE to read Part 1

So in order to have a productive afternoon, you have to set the scene in the morning.

Now after your high-protein, no-sugar, alertness-improving lunch…

Step 1 – Schedule the right tasks for after lunch

If you have the luxury, make sure that you are doing the right mental taks at the right mental time.

If your energy is naturally low after lunch (and not because you ate poorly), then use this time for correspondence (phone calls, emails). If your energy and mental alertness are high, then tackle your major projects after lunch.

Step 2 – Water & Creativity

Boost your creativity with the sound of running water. Another expert chimes in…

“There’s research showing the sound of water does increase creativity. I listen to the sound of running water on my computer while I work.”
Stephen Holt,

Step 3 – Take more breaks from your desk

Day after day I see men and women that have been chained (figuratively, of course!) to their desk for 2, 5, 10, and even 20 years.

With each additional year, their postures worsen, they tighten up more and more, and they lose their mobility. Just look at ourselves, hunched over our keyboards, and clenched forward in our driver’s seats. Tight. Tense. Tired.

We need to move.

So get up at regular intervals and move around. Once per hour. 1 minute is all it takes. You’ll feel more energized.

And even if you are really getting the afternoon energy slumps, and you’re tempted to reach for sugar, caffeine, or both, stop!

Hold off from these energy-suckers, and give some bodyweight exercises a try. A little exercise will get your blood flowing and help you with your concentration. I need this when I’m researching through journals.

My favorite, of course, is the Y-squat, but the prisoner squat will also work.

Any one of the dozens of bodyweight exercises in the Turbulence Training Bodyweight Manual will work…which of course is also great for traveling.

“Stunning! After only 4 weeks of the Bodyweight program I already gained more muscles than in any other program ever. The beauty of the program is that you do exercises that no machine in the world can give you (Planks, 1-leg squats etc.), don’t waste any time and no more excuses for not working out when you are traveling.”
Michael Okada, Berlin/Germany

Click Here for the TT Bodyweight Manual

Step 4 – Late Afternoon Nutrition

Keep your mind sharp by snacking on protein, healthy fats, fiber, and anti-oxidant rich berries.

Some nuts, a protein shake, some berries, and a cup of Green Tea will keep you racing ahead in the mental marathon, while those that rely on caffeine and sugar will be miles behind due to mental cramping and crashing.

Step 5 – Instant Stress Relief

If you’re having one of those days, or just had a bad phone call, or disastrous meeting, then use exercise and breathing exercises to bring calm to your stressed out mind and body. A great exercise to release some tension from the upper back is the “Stick up”.

Click Here to Watch the Shoulder Mobility Video

10 reps and you’ll be ready to go again.

Step 7 – Dinner

You’ve made it this far, so continue to stick to the plan. Make your dinner from energy-supporting foods like lean proteins, fiber-rich fruits, and nutrient-rich vegetables.

Step 8 – Quality time

This is what it is all about, isn’t it? Spending quality time with your friends and family. Healthy relationships are essential to your health.

Don’t turn on the TV, it will just fire you up and stress you out, leading to poor sleep. Find a way to relax. Yoga and other forms of meditation might help you. Someday I’ll share my 10-minute meditation method that has been a life-saver for me…

Step 9 – Your workout

I’m mentioning this now only because I know how much variation there is among workout times between y’all.

Some exercise first thing in the AM, some at lunch, others after work, and even others still just before bed after the kids are asleep.

So while there is no best time to workout, you can be sure that there is a best frequency…and that is consistently. No matter when you train, your workouts should leave you healthier, more energized, and more productive.

And of course, if you are using Turbulence Training, your workouts will take you much closer to your goals.

Step 10 – Sleep

The quality and duration of your sleep tonight is essential to your productivity tomorrow.

If you are having problems sleeping, fix them! If it is light, noise, stress, or worries, fix these as soon as possible. If you can’t pin down your sleep problems to one factor, then keep a sleep journal just like you keep a training journal. This will help you identify your sleep-stealers.

Dedicated to improving your life,

Craig Ballantyne, CSCS, MS
P.S.Don’t let another exhausting, unproductive day go by at work. Use these tips and start getting ahead. Heck, get more done by 10am than you usually do all day. Read part 1 here.

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Comments on How to Make Tomorrow More Productive »

November 18, 2008

Tyler @ 4:43 am

wheres step 6?

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