Quiche and To Do list at Queen City Bakery/ via @johntmeyer

My day is best when

My day is best when...

  • I get 7 hours and 15 minutes of sleep
  • I start my day with a nice, healthy breakfast
  • I have one cup of coffee from Queen City Bakery
  • I walk to work
  • I find time to write even if it is just one page or for 10 minutes
  • I eat lunch and have a conversation instead of working and eating
  • I get away from email and have a solid 60 minutes to focus on a project (read #offlinedarksixty)
  • I go for a run where I want to accelerate at the finish
  • I get to have dinner with my fiancé who works evenings but we squeeze in 50 minutes to eat together on her break
  • I spend my evening reading, thinking, or hanging with friends — not working

The entrepreneurial/startup/productivity world I play in is full of advice on how to spend your time, but it's not always actionable.

Statements like "Follow your dreams!" and "If it doesn't make you happy, don't do it." and "Only spend time on the things you love." I agree with all of these statements, but often they can be hard to apply to my daily life. I wake up tomorrow and the next day and often feel stuck in my regular routine. I’m not changing the world, accomplishing my dreams, or spending my hours the way I want to.

Ask the Easy Question Instead

What are my dreams? What makes me happy? What do I love?

These are big questions. Questions that take some serious thought and reflection. Often I feel like I just don't have the answers. Without the answers it feels like I can get lost. But instead of worrying about asking the supposed “right questions” what if I start by asking the easy questions.

What do I do on my best day?

Creating the Ideal Day

Think of your best day. Sometime in the past 30 days you’ve had a great day that you can remember vividly. Think back to that day and work backwards to the things you did on that day. What did you eat for breakfast? Who did you spend time with? What did you work on or create that day?

Make a list and start doing more of the things on that list. Plan your schedule and put yourself in situations where you can check things off your list and you’ll notice your days starting to improve.

I don’t get to do all of the things on my list everyday, but if I get four or five in I know it’ll be a good day. Good days turn into good weeks and good weeks turn into good months. Soon you’ll be following your dreams and spending time on the things you love.