Taking Charge of Your Day

How do you take charge of your day?

Do you jump out of bed in the morning
and hit the ground running so that you get everything you have to
do done?

Do you wake up with some dread and delay getting up because you’re
just not very excited about it or it feels like too much?

Or do you get up feeling somewhat resigned to what you need to do
today and get yourself going without much thought?

I’ve done variations of all of these at one time or other in my
life and then realized I was acting like I didn’t have any control,
that the circumstances of my life controlled me.  That’s when I
made some changes. 

I decided to take charge of my day and start it with something that
supported me in what I want for my well being.

Here’s my simple 3 point plan:

First thing in the morning I sit and meditate.  I consider it the
dental floss of my mind.  Sitting quietly for even a few minutes
sets my waking life “thermostat”.  When I start my day being
centered I’m more likely to remain centered throughout my day and
feel in charge of myself rather than reactive to my environment. 

I make a list of 10 appreciations and 10 intentions for my day.
Appreciation is to be sensitively aware of the intrinsic value of
someone or something. 
When we lead with appreciation we’re much more likely to feel
happy and energized, and to see the possibilities in whatever is
presented to us. And appreciation seems to produce more of what we
want- more love, well-being, money, and opportunities. 

Making a list of intentions (which is an enlightened version of a
“to do” list) puts us on the path of living a life of purpose and
meaning.  True self esteem comes from accomplishing something of
meaning in our lives. So knowing what our intentions are and the
actions that will fulfill those helps us stay on track, focused,
and effective.

I strongly advise writing these lists out so that you can reference
them throughout the day and get back on track if needed.  Also,
they are good to review at the end of the day for assessment and
acknowledgement (as in a pat on the back!). Or for identifying
what more might be needed to accomplish something.  (On this
enlightened path, there is no shaming, blaming, or maiming! only
taking responsibility as the action taker of your life.)

Then I get on with my day. 

I’ve been doing these simple practices for years with extraordinary
outcomes.  People, experiences, and opportunities have come my way
that I would have never imagined. 

Tuning your bodymind in this way each morning will result in a life of meaning, purpose, and well-being. May all be well for you. 

About the author

Suzanne Kilkus

Suzanne Kilkus is a Soto Zen meditation practitioner and teacher and has practiced as a therapist and counselor for over three decades. She is dedicated to assisting people in expanding their capacity for giving and receiving love, and for recognizing and expressing their basic goodness in everyday life. Her path to live with wholehearted compassion and care is an invitation to everyone. She is a teacher with Open Door Zen Community in Madison, WI.