The Two Step Process to Achieving the Best Day Ever

Hope 11/9/2019

The rational part of you, your mind, has had enough. It makes an agreement with the emotional part you, your heart. The mind tells your heart, “We can’t keep going on like this. We were meant to do better.” The heart sees the logic. Together the mind and heart go to the body and informs the body of their decision. The body is in agreement, “Change must happen. So how are we going to do it?”

Step 1: The Prep Work

It begins the night before. Mind, heart, and body agree to go to bed at a decent time. They have to remember the events of the day, but they cannot let that impede their tomorrow. How do they (your three parts) do it?

-End the evening with a clean conscience. Anger must not be allowed when the sun goes down (Ephesians 4:26-27). The mind must be sober, the heart not hindered, and the body free of toxins. In other words, you need to be sober.

-Journal. There has to be some kind of reckoning. In order to make tomorrow better, today has to be accounted for. What went well, and what went wrong? This is a good time to note any items of gratitude. It is a time to consider how to make things better the next day. There has to be a plan.

-Go to bed with it on your mind. Visualize the best day. What does it look like? It may sound a little hokie to some but consider the words of Thomas Edison, “Never go to sleep without a request to your subconscious.” See it, request it, and pray for it.

Step 2: The Best Day Ever

The prep work is complete. The mind is willing. It has involved the heart. The heart has sent its nutrients to the body with a little side note, “Take this and go do what you were born to do.” The body revived by sleep, supported by mind and heart, will begin the day full of energy. When the body tires, the heart (soul) and mind (spirit) will give it wings to continue its mission.

The plan has been formulated. All that is left to do is to execute it. Do that, and it could be the best day ever. There may be obstacles and distractions. There always is. Deal with them accordingly and then get back to the mission.

The Next Night

Was it the best day? If not, no worries. You can always try again tomorrow. The goal is that every day gets better than the day before. In order to improve the next day, go back and do the prep work again at night. Repeat steps one and two over and over. You will eventually get there.

Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year. –Ralph Waldo Emerson

Courage From Journaling

What are you doing to own your faults? What are you doing to fix them? Benjamin Franklin says there are few that have the courage to do this. How true this is, but what if there was a simple daily habit that would assist you with this courageous feat?

When I left the Army, I knew writing was going to play a large part in my future. I imagined being a novelist. I thought I had these great ideas, but the act of getting those ideas onto paper turned out to be more difficult than I had imagined. Not only was I struggling with writing, I was also struggling with my transition to civilian life. It turns out that my life and my writing were very similar. I drifted along aimlessly in a murky fog.

Dear Diary…

In my darkest times, I would grab a piece of paper and begin to write. Essentially, these were letters to myself. They began with a question or a statement about the problems I was facing. As I kept writing and thinking, potential solutions would come to the forefront. I became a motivational writer for myself. It was on those pages I would tell myself, “I could make it. I could survive.”

In the last few years, my journaling has become a regular practice, both in good times and in bad. In order to advance in my practice, I have incorporated some practical tips from Tim Ferriss, Jim Rohn, and even from some ancient Stoic Philosophers. So what tip am I working on now? It comes from one of Seneca’s daily habits. Seneca would take time at the end of each day and examine what he had done and said. In my personal quest to live a more virtuous life, this idea of examining my day seems to be the most beneficial. Doing so gives me the opportunity to look at and address areas needing improvement. Did I make the most of the day? Did I live up to my own expectations in doing what is right? Did I practice the things I love to preach?

Using a journal as a daily habit to identify and fix your faults doesn’t seem courageous. But the practice will make you more aware of your day-to-day activities. When you stray from the path, you might be quicker to correct your course and get back on. When you err, you will have the courage to own it and correct it.

How few there are who have courage enough to own their own faults, or resolution enough to mend them. –Benjamin Franklin