Five Questions to start your day each day

Continuing on with our Five Questions series I will cover which questions I try to ask myself when I get up and get started each day.  I have to admit that I do not do this every day.  I try to have some variety on my weekends, but for most working days I get started in just this way.

My intent with this post and all of the posts in this series is to promote the value of having discipline and process in what we do in our personal and business lives.  While there can be too much structure in some lives, I firmly believe that many of you, just like me, need more structure and more process in order to be as successful and satisfied as we can be.  I would be curious to see if you feel the same way after reading this and other posts in the five questions series.

Here goes with the questions to start the day:

1.  What is the single most important thing I need to accomplish today?  Every day is different, but one thing they all have in common is that we need some goal or target for the day.  It can be a huge goal, or it can be just to get out of bed and hear the birds sing.  You choose.  My intent is to look at my calendar and decide what has to be done and what could, or should, be moved to another day if needed.  I have a tendency to overschedule some days or I can also find that the way the day flows is not the best usage of my time.  I try to do this before that day, but there have been times where I rescheduled things after giving this the once over in the morning.

2.  What can I learn from reading the Bible this morning? This is a very personal thing for me and I have to admit that I have read from the bible each morning for years.  I do this the most when at home, but I also find bibles in hotel rooms when I travel and I have bible apps on both my phone and my Kindle.  I would encourage you to have some blueprint or foundation for your life.  The Bible is mine.  I try to start every day with a series of verses and the commentary, typically from “Today in the Word” from Moody Publishers.  You might be surprised to see how relevant this can be in issues you will come across in your personal and business life.

3.  Are there any special occasions to be remembered today?  As time goes by and I become more experienced (aka older) I find that many days have great significance for me because of earlier times in my life.  We all know that January 1 or December 25 have significance, but September 11 and December 7 do too.  Many will say that 9/11 and 12/7 are important because of the attack on America that occurred each day.  they also have personal meaning for me because 9/11 is my wedding anniversary (31 this September) and 12/7 is my wife’s birthday (always 39).  Remembering a significant day can make a big difference for others in your life.  Be that difference in their day and their life.

4.  Who do I need to send a handwritten note to today?  Those of you who know me well or who have heard me speak about networking know what a proponent of the handwritten note I am.  I didn’t learn this growing up, but I did learn it from two very important people in my life.  The most important is my wife, Gena.  She is the queen of the note and she has mentored not only me, but also both of our sons in this practice.  The second is Clark Baker, CEO of the Houston YMCA.  Clark was the CEO here in Nashville in the 1990’s and I had the good fortune to work for him and the YMCA at that time.  Clark starts each day by writing 5 handwritten notes.  He is the king of this practice and a true inspiration to me in the area of saying thanks.

5.  Which “uniform” do I need to wear today?  The word uniform may seem strange to some of you, but we all wear some type of uniform.  It may not be a sports or military uniform, but what we wear tells a story of who we are and what we are about and trying to accomplish.  I would encourage you to dress at least one step past what you think is needed, especially if you are in the business world.  It is always easier to take a tie off, or remove your jacket.  It is hard to tie a tie you do not have or wear a jacket that is in the car.  Use the Scouting motto, be prepared, and even more so, be a little over prepared.

There you have it, five simple questions to start your day.

Ask yourself these questions and I know you will be better prepared for the day, even if you do not plan to leave the house.

Let me know how they work for you.