3 essential routines you need for a more productive, less stressful 2021

3 essential routines you need for a more productive, less stressful 2021

via FastCompany by Carson Tate

When we were sent home last March, we patched together work habits to survive the new world of work and life.

You endured and made it to 2021.

Now, as the new year unfolds, it’s time to level up and replace survival work processes, with practices that support and enable your productivity, performance, and peace of mind.

Here are the three essential routines you need to make the months ahead more productive and less stressful.


When the commute to your “office” is a few minutes from your bedroom to your sofa or kitchen table and the days of pandemic life blur together, it’s imperative to identify your “mojo magic moment” so you can get an early win to ignite your energy and motivation for the day. Here are four ways you can jump-start your day.

Compete to beat your time. Time yourself on a routine task. For example, how long does it take you to make breakfast? Read and respond to 12 emails? Or prepare the weekly report? Turn these routine tasks into a competition with yourself and see how fast you can go. You will be surprised at how much you can accomplish and how motivated you are to take on the day.

Organize and empower your Type-A perfectionist to take the driver’s seat. Straighten up your workspace, file emails, or alphabetize your spices. Then stand back, admire your work, and tell yourself you did a great job. Now move on to the first task on your task list with confidence and vigor.

Get dressed in clothes that make you feel confident, professional, and productive. Before you skip over this potential “mojo magic moment” as too “woo-woo,” know that there is a scientific theory called “enclothed cognition” that supports the effect that clothes have on how we feel and act. According to Dr. Nina Vasan, a psychiatrist and clinical assistant professor at Stanford University School of Medicine, “Clothing shapes your mental state and productivity. When you are stuck at home all day, what you wear can set the tone for what you are doing.” Dig into the back of your closet and pull out your favorite jacket, dress, or shirt. Put it on and use it to get your mind ready to work.

Move your body. You’ve heard it before, however, exercise does work to elevate your energy level. In a University of Georgia randomized controlled trial, researchers split people into three groups” low-intensity, moderate-intensity, and a control group (no exercise). During the six-week experiment, both exercise groups reported growing levels of energy compared to the control group. And, the good news, the low-intensity group reported less fatigue than the moderate-intensity group. Start your day with jumping jacks, a walk, or a few yoga poses, and get your blood and energy flowing…

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