Look, I’m not saying that I follow my own advice, and these are definitely things I should aim to do more often, but I find that when I follow the tips in this post, I’m a lot happier, more organised, and productive.

1. Stop comparing yourself. I think this is one of the best pieces of advice you could ever get. We’re always looking at the people around us, and it feels like they’re all more competent, like they’ve got their shit together, like their lives are perfect. Like, stop. Nobody’s life is perfect and you know it, but it wouldn’t make a very good Instagram feed if people posted about their bad days. Don’t even compare yourself in a ‘yeah she’s prettier but I’m more successful than her’ kind of way, just don’t. It’s does no good and your thoughts are better spent on working towards your own goals.

2. Clean up as you go. I KonMari-ed my room a couple of weeks ago (more on that soon) and now that everything has its own place, it’s so much easier to stay on top of mess. Now I’ll put my clothes away as soon as they’re ironed, and make sure things aren’t hanging around in places they don’t belong. It’s so much easier to tidy a few things at a time, rather than reaching a point where you can’t even think any more until you’ve spent a whole day cleaning and tidying.

3. Stop putting things off. I know, better said than done, but it’s not worth the anxiety at the back of your mind that wouldn’t exist if you hadn’t let all of those little tasks pile up. Do the dishes! Reply to that email! Mop the floor! It really isn’t as time-consuming or painful as your mind likes to make out, so it’s worth doing that thing as soon as you can.

4. Check your bank balance regularly. I’m a bit Schrödinger about my balance – I’M NOT POOR BECAUSE I HAVEN’T CHECKED HOW MUCH MONEY I’VE SPENT YET SO UNTIL WE KNOW FOR SURE I STILL HAVE FOUR FIGURES IN THERE – and it’s definitely one of my worst habits. I know that if I check my account at least once or twice a week, I’m a much more responsible spender because I’m aware of the most recent balance, and know whether or not I can just blow ridiculous amounts on pastries and shoes. There’s no escaping your spending habits, so you may as well face up to them and make more informed decisions.

5. Allocate time for work, and time for relaxing. It’s too easy to get sucked into browsing the internet for hours, then realising that you’ve neither achieved anything that you needed to do, or used your time in a way that makes you feel relaxed or refreshed. I find that putting things down in a daily planner is a great way to remind myself of the things that I need to do, and it feels satisfying to tick things off my to-do list. Visualising what I need to do keeps them at the front of my mind until I complete them, and it’s so much easier to make time for myself when I know I’ve done what I need to do.

Now go forth, and do things!

– Niko


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