It’s easy to fall into a rut, doing things the same way every day even when they aren’t working for you. Sometimes, switching things up can fix it. Sometimes, even if the change you try doesn’t address the specific issue that you are having, it can illuminate what that issue is and can energize you to take the steps necessary to improve your life. Any of the five experiments with change below might have that effect.
1. Change Up Your Sleep
Most adults don’t get as much sleep as they need and it can affect mood, productivity, and overall focus. This could be for many different reasons, but there are ways to change up your sleep routine and get the necessary amount of shut-eye. The first and easiest place to start is with your bedtime routine. Try avoiding all screens for the last hour before bed, and include some soothing rituals that signal that it’s bedtime, such as a hot bath or reading.
From here, you can work back to behaviors earlier in the day that can ensure a good night’s sleep, such as avoiding heavy food, caffeine or alcohol in the evening and getting some exercise.
2. Get Your Finances in Order
Money can be fun to spend and stressful to manage, but in the long run, doing more managing than spending is really the key to less stress. There’s no better time than the present to make a plan to pay off your debts and start saving more.
Refinancing multiple student loans into one can be helpful so you don’t have to juggle multiple payments and can make just one lower monthly expense. You may also want to consider strategies for paying down any credit card debt and increasing your retirement savings at work.
3. Experiment with Time Management
Many people have time management techniques they swear by, from bullet journals to Pomodoro and beyond. Try a few of them, tweaking them for your own use. If you focus on what works for you as opposed to feeling as though you have to follow any one method slavishly, this process can be life-changing.
4. Don’t Be Afraid to Say Yes and No
If you have a risk-averse personality, what would happen if you begin saying yes to things more often than you say no? Of course, you should not agree to anything unsafe, but many opportunities may present themselves if you leap into more situations to try something new.
Learning to say yes is a powerful lesson, but so is learning to say no, and the inability to say no is a bigger problem for many people, especially if you are someone who likes to work hard and make others happy. However, when you agree to everything that is asked of you, you often find yourself overwhelmed by projects and commitments and obligations that you don’t want.
For example, have you been asked to take on a volunteer position that will mean time away from your family, friends or a pastime that you love? It’s okay to say no, and although many people few they must also offer an explanation, this isn’t always necessary either.