How To Improve Your Environment – Feeling and performing at your best requires a significant amount of energy. Sometimes it feels nearly impossible to excel in our careers, spend time with family, take care of our bodies and grow our business all at the same time. Sleep, exercise, good nutrition, and connection play a huge role in having consistently high energy levels throughout the day—but they’re not the only factors.
Our outside world and environment are often indicators of how we’re feeling on the inside. It’s hard to feel energized if you’re surrounded by messy rooms and unorganized closets. Having more flow in your environment brings more flow into your internal state. Leaving your external world a mess zaps your energy. You feel like nothing is working and you’re constantly bumping into challenges.
What if instead, you experienced things flowing easily throughout your day, allowing you to take care of the things that matter to you the most? I’ve worked with a few clients who had significant personal and professional success by improving their external environment.
So in this post, I’ll summarize the easiest and most successful ways to leverage your environment to gain more energy and give you a system for identifying your areas for improvement. This way, you’ll be able to manage your environment for more energy and perform at your best.
Step #1: Take inventory of what you’re physically tolerating – How To Improve Your Environment
Make a list of all the things in your environment that annoy you: dishes in the sink, broken doorknob, overdue oil change, too many folders on your desktop, unanswered emails, piles of laundry, etc. Take a little notebook or start a note on your phone and list every single thing that you don’t like around you.
We’re just making a list—don’t get overwhelmed with how you’re going to fix everything yet.
Take the list with you throughout the day and notice other things that aren’t working or are not efficient. Continue the exercise for a day or two. Don’t forget to list essential items like organizing your personal documents and less important but still annoying things like getting a new garden hose.
Making a list will help you close all of the open tabs in your brain of things you’re trying to remember. Having ALL those items in one single list will already start to give you some more energy.
Step #2: Take inventory of what you’re virtually tolerating.
We spend a lot of time on our computers and phones. Make a list of what you can organize better there as well.
I recently had a session with a client who has been procrastinating on completing a big project for a few weeks. It was clear that he really wanted to complete it, but something was holding him back. Finally, he shared that his current working environment is less than optimal. His computer and desk weren’t comfortable and his desktop was overly cluttered. He shared that he had files and folders everywhere and a dozen tabs open at all times.
It’s almost impossible to focus when your workspace is disorganized. So ask yourself if there are areas in your phone, computer or tablet that could be cleaned up.
Step #3: Take inventory of what you’re tolerating in your business.
If you’re self-employed or you run a business, carve a couple of hours in your schedule to look into everything that could be optimized, simplified, systemized, automated or DELEGATED.
Bonus tip: Delegating is the most unutilized solution. You can delegate anything that you don’t want to do, don’t like doing or that’s slowing you down. Maybe it’s not possible for you to delegate much at this time, but set it as a goal and eventually, it will be.
Example: meals, cleaning, busy work, repetitive tasks, etc. I often think of my hourly rate and the hourly rate I can pay someone to get the job done. If I feel like I’ll have a good return on investment to pay someone else I usually do so.
Step #4: Start living as if you were the most organized person you know.
Before you start taking action on your lists, start making changes as you go.
Before, I used to let my laundry accumulate through the week and then do several loads on the weekend. Then, I’d have dry laundry on my bed for days. At night, I’d move it to the couch and in the morning, I’d move it back on my bed for future Kalina to worry about.
Now, the moment I have enough for a load, I just throw it in the washer, then in the drier, and then I fold it the same evening as I’m talking on the phone or listening to an audiobook.
The problem is, we think we don’t have time throughout the day to take care of the small things. So then the small things pile up and become the big things that drain our energy.
Think about the small things in your life that always seem to get in the way. Make a point to not let them build up any more.
Step #5: Prioritize your list and spread out your tasks in your calendar.
Now that you’re clear on what you need to do differently, you can start taking action.
First, re-write your list of things you’re tolerating by putting the ones that annoy you the most up on top. Complete it with listing everything else.
Next, find 30-minute blocks in your schedule and book one of the items you listed and take care of it. The goal is to make this easy, simple and not overwhelming so break it down into small chunks. You don’t need to block out a weekend to re-organize but you can chip away at your goals every day.
Lastly, keep the list somewhere where you’ll see it. You don’t want to forget to use the opportunity to knock more stuff off as you go.
In conclusion, our energy levels and how we feel depend to a big extent on what our external world looks like and how well it works. I think almost anyone would agree that they feel happier and more productive in a clean and organized home. And most entrepreneurs feel in a better state of flow when they’ve set up their business with the systems it needs to run smoothly. Setting up those systems can take some upfront time and energy but the results are worth the effort.
Even checking the smallest little annoyance off of your list will make you feel energized. You’ll probably experience a little boost of the feel-good hormone dopamine as you take care of something. That little moment of reward will boost your energy and make you want to continue these new habits.
If you still feel overwhelmed and stuck, you know who to call. Book your complimentary consultation over here.
If you enjoyed this post, you may like the one I wrote about the 8 Healthy Habits of the Successful Entrepreneur.