Some say that you are the sum of your habits. So when the bad ones outpace the good ones – you know what happens. You sabotage yourself, inhibit your productivity and impede your path to success – whether success is completing a major project or daily tasks.
Because you don’t always see bad habits encroaching on you, your self-discipline is important. It can keep the damage bad habits cause from eventually breaking down your success.
What are the bad habits that may be creeping in on you?
Using your phone, tablet or computer in bed. Just don’t. It does much more than make your spouse/partner angry. It disrupts sleep patterns and limits productivity. There is something very scientific about this in the fact that short-wavelength blue light (from devices) impacts your mood, energy level and sleep quality. Sunlight actually contains high concentrations of this blue light. But whether it comes from the sun or from your device, the blue light halts production of melatonin (sleep-inducing hormone) and makes you feel more alert when your eyes are directly exposed to it. The sun’s rays lose the blue light late in the day allowing your body to produce melatonin and start to induce sleep.
Introducing the blue light via our devices in the evening messes up our bodies’ schedules and interferes with sleep. Some screens are now coming with an evening mode – which switches the blue tones to warmer orange tones – that produces less interference with melatonin production.
Why does something that you do at home have so much impact on your business? If you aren’t rested, your performance is subpar and your mood is less probably the same. Your demeanor will color what does or does not happen during the day.
Not thinking of yourself as a business owner and entrepreneur. It’s obvious that you’re passionate about caring for children: you opened a facility specifically for this. But as the owner of that passion and your facility, you have the responsibility to actually stay in business. You need to be profitable and growing to provide a quality learning experience for your students. It’s not an “open the doors and they will come” scenario. Operating a children’s activity center that is profitable and growing requires much more than passion. You have to constantly analyze and evaluate things for the present and the future that have little to do with your passion but enable you to keep doing it.
It’s important to consider the overall value of the training you are providing and to realize that your students and their parents are first and foremost your customers and that without you parents would not have a child getting amazing care. Also realize that you’re important to the care industry because you’re pretty much the gatekeeper of the industry to your customers. You have power that is substantial and you should wield it. You can’t do that if you’re thinking of yourself as simply a teacher and not a business owner and entrepreneur as well.
Saying “yes” when you should say “no.” Whether it’s no to participating in an event or to parents who feel they deserve special privileges, you must learn to say it and to do it easily. Because saying yes out of habit because it’s easier than saying “no,” just adds distractions for you and your students.
There is also research (Univ. of CA at San Francisco) that shows that the more difficult it is for you to say no, the more likely you are to experience stress, burnout and even depression. And ambiguous statements like “I don’t think I can” and “I’m not certain.” By saying no to new commitments, you honor existing commitments and give yourself a better chance to actually fulfill them.
Focusing on the Negative instead of the Positive. It’s for sure that you want to handle what goes wrong in your day, but don’t let that negativity put you and your entire facility in a funk. Move on from the negative or you’ll stay at that low level of existence.
If you can’t move past the negative you risk transferring your “funk” over to your staff, your students and their parents – basically everyone that you come in contact with – and prevent good things from happening. Any good vibes and forward momentum are easily disrupted by one Debbie Downer.