It’s a frustrating routine: I fall sound asleep at about 10:30 only to wake up a few hours later with my mind racing. This, of course, causes a myriad of after-effects, not the least of which is a very crabby morning-after. So, at the urging of my husband, my New Year’s resolution for 2017 is simple: This year, I resolve to sleep through the night.
In trolling the self-help blogs, a recurring message was that an anecdote to middle-of-the-night worrying is simply being confident that you are in control of all the things that need to be done the next day. Although I’m an avid planner, I have days where I don’t make much of dent in my list. Knowing that, I focused on time management and found five strategies to adopt:
1. Have one “must-achieve” goal every day.
Start each morning with one “must-achieve goal.” More than likely, this is the one thing that will wake you up in the middle of night. If you know that it is the one thing you’re absolutely, no matter what, getting done tomorrow, you don’t need to stress about it tonight.
2. Fight the tyranny of the urgent.
If you succumb to the tyranny of the urgent, you can find yourself going days, or even weeks, without touching the important stuff. Don’t be afraid to ignore or delegate the things that get in the way of real forward momentum.
3. Never touch things twice.
Don’t save an email or a phone call to deal with later. As soon as something gets your attention you should act on it, delegate it, or delete it.
4. Eat a frog.
Do the least appetizing, most dreaded item on your to-do list before you do anything else. This not only gets the nasty task out of the way, but it also gives you a sense of success, boosting further productivity.
5. Get ready for tomorrow before leaving the office.
This practice accomplishes two things: it helps you solidify what you’ve accomplished today, and it ensures you’ll have a productive tomorrow.
Happy New Year, and here’s to sleeping through the night in 2017!