Although I’ve never been officially diagnosed with ADD, I would be amiss to say that my attention does not wane from time to time. My assistant, Christina and I joke that I have my to-do list ready to go but then a butterfly flies by and I get caught up in where it’s going, what it’s doing, the beautiful color pattern on its wings, or in the words of You’ve Got Mail, “I assume it’s going to Bloomingdales to buy a hat that will turn out to be a mistake, as almost all hats are.”
No matter how busy we are, we all have the same amount of hours in the day. I believe that it all comes down to priorities. Will we make “focus our friends” or will we create yet another laundry list of reasons as to why we didn’t get such and such thing done during the pandemic? Reasons are just excuses in my opinion.
Not to mention that with the uncertainty of our times, anxiousness plays a huge effect. Waking up with extra anxiety doesn’t do anyone any good. So I’ve started doing these 5 tricks to calm my nerves and ease my mind while boosting my daily productivity…
Every evening before bed I write down my to-do list for the next day but I only include 4-7 things that take priority (I even put little check boxes next to them). If my todo list is too long, I know it won’t get done and that creates a feeling of frustration. And if you’re anthing like me, the frustration equals anxiety which equates to feeling like I’m just not enough. When I write down the 4-7 things, the next day as I get my list completed, I literally check them off and the feeling of accomplishment is quite validating. It’s simple but effective.
When I wake up every morning, I do some deep breathing exercises before I get out of bed. I dig doing the yogi Ojai breaths or Wim Hof has some great free breathing videos on youtube that are only 15 mins. I love practicing breath work because it improves my emotional state while decreasing stress and aiding positive self development. After the breath work I immediately go into a meditation. I currently listen to Insight Timer’s Sarah Blondin mediations- which also offers free content. They range from 8-18mins so it’s really doable and not an overwhelming time commitment.
After the breath work, meditation, and a big glass of lemon water with my morning cup o’ matcha, if I need some extra focus, I have some CBD capsules. I am loving RCVR‘s organic CBD Capsules for Clarity (feel free to use the code NOEL20 for an extra 20% off).
Lastly setting a timer throughout my work day has been really helpful. Every other hour, I will work for 45minutes and take 15mins for “me time”. During those 15 mins I can scroll the sosch, go for a walk in nature, dance, or do a healing stretch (child’s pose is known for alleviating stress, anxiety and tension). Alexis Artin, founder of The Freebody Practice offers freebies for movements connecting body, mind, and soul so I also do that from time to time as well. As an actress, I even use the timer when learning my lines or working on a scene. 45mins on, 15 off. Or 20 mins on, 10 mins off. This helps me really focus my time so there’s no distractions, delays, or excuses.
I hope all of these tips serve you as much as they have me. And please let me know in the comments below if you try them out and whatcha think.
For some extra nuggets of wisdom, my good friend, Shelley Paxton (author of SOULBBATICAL: A Corporate Rebel’s Guide To Finding Your Best Life) says to take 1-2 days off of working completely. She doesn’t serve clients on those days, she solely focuses on her inner work, sparking creativity, and on the things that bring her joy. I haven’t been brave enough to incorporate that into my work week just yet but that’s a goal of mine for the fall months ahead.