article written by Shaina Miesnik
Whether you ride at dawn or you only come out at night, you don’t have to make uncomfortable changes to be productive. I have found the key to healthy productivity starts with 3 things… prioritizing your self-care, understanding how you are uniquely designed to go about your day, and trusting the process.
Rituals That Work
I used to roll out of bed and start working immediately. I would forget to eat, and I’d be tired and slow by the middle of the day with not so much as a small dent in my to do list. One day, while I was writing down all of the things I wanted to do for myself (but knew I wouldn’t have the energy to do), I had an aha moment. I realized that I was treating self care like a reward instead of a necessity. I felt I had to work hard in order to earn me time. I decided the first and last thing I would do every day is put my needs first. This has turned into a 5 hour total daily ritual – and while that might sound excessive, I have NEVER been more productive and energetic in my life.
Here is my formula for building daily rituals that work:
There is only one rule to follow, and that is to NOT put anything on the list you feel obligated to do. Only add things you want to do. Let’s give it a go!
Try out one or two activities under each of the following 4 categories both day and night:
Self-care: what can you do to take care of your mind, body, and/or spirit?
Movement: in what way(s) are you comfortable moving your body?
Space-care: how can you care for your space/environment?
Energize (Day): what gives you energy to get your day started?
Wind-down (Night): what helps you relax to end out your day?
Once you’ve established a routine you’d like to try, remember, it’s ok to try out a few things, or change up your rituals altogether if or when they no longer serve you. Keep experimenting and stay open to changes in your routine as you evolve.
Scheduling By Design
The next step I took was looking to my Human Design chart to figure out how I could best manage my day. You might be wondering what I am talking about… so for those that are not familiar, Human Design is a mashup of many systems, both ancient and modern, that gives you a map to how you uniquely express your energy – and what actions you can take to live your one-of-a-kind life with more enjoyment and ease. I have studied this particular system for the last 6 years, and have used it both professionally and personally. So naturally, this was the next step in my path to productivity process.
The first thing you’ll want to do is grab your own Human Design chart (also referred to as a bodygraph). You can do this for free HERE – you will need to know your exact time, date, and location of birth to generate your chart.
What you are looking for is the arrows on the left side (sample circled in green below) of your chart:
If the TOP arrow (on the left side) is pointing to the LEFT try this:
- waking up to an alarm may work for you
- once you’re up you are ready to start your day
- having a consistent routine can make things easier for you
If the TOP arrow (on the left side) is pointing to the RIGHT try this:
- let yourself wake up naturally (try without an alarm)
- allow yourself to be slow to get up – and rise when ready
- don’t force consistency, go with your natural flow and be open to change in your day
If the BOTTOM arrow (on the left side) is pointing to the LEFT try this:
- your day needs structure – make plans based on predictability
- keep your space decluttered
- consistency in your environment is important – you may thrive by eating, sleeping, working, etc. in the same place every day
If the BOTTOM arrow (on the left side) is pointing to the RIGHT try this:
- check in with your energy each day and make plans in the moment
- freedom of an unplanned day is healthy for you
- you may enjoy variety and flexibility in where you spend your time (work, eat, sleep, etc.)
That’s just one of many things your Human Design can tell you – but really an important one when it comes to understanding how you best start and go through your day! Once I realized I’m a naturally slow riser, I began giving myself plenty of space to stay in bed until I was good and ready to get up and it has made a HUGE difference. Productivity isn’t just for the early birds!
Trust the Process
The last step is to trust in your own brand of magic. If you had told me a year ago that staying in bed for over an hour, and spending a total of 5 hours minimum per day on my self care was the best way for me to be productive and spend more time with my family without experiencing any burnout and getting SO much accomplished… I would’ve definitely laughed in your face.
We are so conditioned to believe that when we do things differently than we are “supposed” to, that it’s wrong and we aren’t going to be successful. The truth is, trying to go against your natural rhythm will never help you.
Carve out your own rituals, march to the beat of your own drum, and become the badass entrepreneur you were designed to be!
If any of this seems overwhelming, I designed a digital planner that you can download for free HERE that will give you a 2023 planner based on your unique productivity style. (Designed for GoodNotes 5 on iPad)
Shaina is wife, mom, and serial entrepreneur. She is a Human Design nerd, educated in women’s health, with a professional background in business consulting, who is constantly creating new ways to make the world an easier place! You can find her on TikTok @shainalikehyena for more digital planning and life hacks.
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