Habit500We all want to find ways to become more successful, progress closer to our goals, increase our productivity. One great technique to try out is utilising some of the habits people who have had success in their respective areas commonly report nurturing. Many of these are simple and easy to incorporate into your own life, and often come with a whole host of other added benefits which alone are reason enough to make a few changes.

1. Wake up a little bit earlier

Give yourself more time to prepare for the day ahead. Put aside moments dedicated entirely to just thinking, about anything you like, anything that is important to you. This quiet, uninterrupted part of the day could be the ideal time to think in peace, and you may find that you can follow your thoughts through further, and come up with a whole new ideas, plans, or questions. It also means that you will simply be less rushed and flustered throughout the day: start with a level, focused mind and the day will continue in the same way. Research has suggested that people who do make the sacrifice of rising earlier than they perhaps need to tend to be more optimistic, more conscientious, and more able to predict problems that may arise and therefore tackle them head-on. If you don't believe it, ask the likes of Sir Richard Branson, or Robert Iger, Disney's CEO.

2. Have a healthy breakfast

Habit2Now that you're up nice and early, you have no excuse not to dedicate a bit of time to cooking up something delicious and nutritious to start your day. Throw in some vitamins to keep you alert and energetic, along with complex carbohydrates, which will ensure your body releases energy slowly throughout your morning, to avoid you lagging before lunch.

3. Exercise

Working out gives you boosts of energy and increase your ability to concentrate, clearly leading to heightened productivity for the rest of the day. Exercising also tends to make people feel better about themselves, and the added confidence will translate directly to your work, and your interaction with those around you.

4. Keep a journal

HABITRegularly writing for yourself, without any other readers to keep in mind and try to please, is a really healthy, beneficial thing to do. It's a great way to release stress in a productive and safe way, to avoid you burning out at work or letting your responsibilities get on top of you. You can write about anything you like - things you're grateful for, a record of amusing anecdotes, little events you witness that restore your faith in humanity, a simple record of what you've done that day or how you're feeling. Literally anything can be scribbled down, because it's your private space, and all of these ideas can be crucial ingredients to remaining positive and optimistic. The retrospective quality that much journaling has also means that you can review ideas or events in a safe, uninterrupted space, often leading to a better understanding or realisations about things that have happened, opening up doors for new and better ideas. Your journal won't only be a tool for reflecting though, it's also a great way to plan things, write goals, keep organised and make a record of your inspirations.

5. Ask more questions

Ask anyone, about anything. You never know who might know something that gives you a flash of inspiration, or helps you make a useful business connection, or can solve a problem you have been having. Asking questions is an obvious way to open up doors, and it's something a lot of us often forget to do - or even feel rude doing. But the fact is, it actually tends to make people like you more, and feel that you have taken an interest in them and value their experiences, feelings, and knowledge. Giving other people the chance to be heard and appreciated is absolutely key to keeping a happy, productive workplace. What's more, people who ask a lot of questions - contrary to what some may think - actually tend to have greater control over the conversation. So give yourself a chance to learn and listen, and you never know what you might find.

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