Life is a roller coaster ride of excitement, despair and opportunity.
There are days where I find it difficult to get out of bed. Other days, I feel like my soul and the universe are completely in sync.
During the tough times, we may wonder why we keep fighting.
But the good news is, with a little planning and extra adulating, the tough times can be softened.
According to Murphy's Law,
Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.
Let's discuss a few ways I've found help take the edge off when shit hits the fan.
1. Create a budget.
If you can write, type and/or do basic math, you can set up a budget for yourself! It's that simple.
In my early twenties, I realized adulting was starting to get really expensive.
Between rent, utilities, groceries and my car payment, plus all of those depressing credit card bills made my checking account look like a rest stop for my money, rather than an asset that grew each month.
Finding yourself with more month than money isn't fun. So, commit to a written-budget.
Trust me, the scariest part is getting started. Just knowing where your money is going each month is half the battle.
Knowledge will give you the power to avoid situations where your paycheck becomes part of the $32.5 billion in overdraft fees Americans pay to banks every year.
2. Don't procrastinate, and ditch the all-nighter.
I'm the first to admit if you give me a week to complete an assignment, it isn't going to be started until a day or two before the deadline.
I work well under pressure, and find I'm happiest when I'm up against a deadline, fighting the good fight.
But there are a few major flaws to pulling into procrastination station.
Remember Murphy's Law? Yeah, things go wrong, and without a margin for error, you're screwed.
You're also going to miss out on sleep, which is critical for reaching your full potential in the day ahead. Zombies don't make great team members.
The caffeine rush will only make you cranky as you try to compensate with one pot of coffee at a time.
Dragging your laptop to bed with you and completing work throughout the night creates a divot in the mattress where your tailbone sits.
Deformed, or low-quality mattresses can cause back pain, which leads to poor sleep. Poor quality of sleep is a major problem if you want to kick butt during the daylight hours.
3. Consider a social media cleanse.
The average American teen spends 1 to 1.5 hours checking social media every day.
Adults carry this behavior pattern with them into the workplace, subconsciously multi-tasking instead of focusing all of their effort on their work.
It doesn't help that social media is a place where we put our best selves on display.
Social media leads to depression. In my personal life, I found the less I interacted with social media, the happier I became.
I was spending less of my day comparing my own life to the best moments of my friends and family.
I was also way more productive. The things that mattered started to get done: laundry, working out, projects at work and a lot of other things started to take less time and effort to complete.
4. Stop using emojis and talk face-to-face.
When we interact with people online or via text message and phone calls, there's something big we miss out on.
It's called face-to-face interaction.
Multiple studies point to the increasing gap in soft skills that millennials have, especially when compared with pre-smartphone and social media generations.
I telecommute quite a bit for work and I can tell you that I've personally seen my in-person social skills atrophy.
The more time spent staring at screens instead of spending time in-person with friends and family, the more at risk we are for seriously hampering our social skills. And that's something that can impact virtually every part of our daily lives.
5. Prepare your own meals.
The best way to satisfy your nutritional needs is by preparing your own food with healthy ingredients.
Unfortunately, with hectic schedules and the easy access to fast food, the percentage of home cooked meals most of us eat is plummeting.
Growing up, I remember the family dinner. It was a time when we put away technology and actually talked with each other about our day.
Remember those soft skills? Wresting with my sister for the bowl of potatoes and joking with my dad helped me to become the conversationalist I am today.
The value of a home cooked meal hasn't been forgotten.
If you want to operate at peak-performance, you've got to fuel your engine with quality ingredients.
Focus on fresh, green vegetables. Avoid carbs and work in fresh fish as a great source of protein.
Above all else, stay away from the starchy, sodium-rich fast food burger and fries.
Life is going to be a long, winding journey. When things go wrong, it's best to have a well-funded emergency fund of 6-12 months' worth of living expenses, along with a no nonsense attitude about getting objectives completed (for work and in your personal life).
Cut out the distractions, decide what matters and develop the life skills to smooth out the rough patches, instead of letting them dictate your life.
I'm happier for having learned (the hard way) that these skills are important!