It takes currency to make decisions. And each day we’re only allotted so much of that currency. It’s important not to waste it on frivolous decisions. Utilize your natural energy moments (for many of us that’s early in the morning) to make those important decisions. Don’t check off a few emails, but rather make the yes-or-no sign-off on the important project.
When that capital is used up, that’s it for the day. The best thing you can do is get some rest and wait until tomorrow.
The benefit of routines is the creation of a kind of daily specialization. Routines program your body to daily perform the same tasks (or similar tasks) at the same time. Your body knowing this, it starts to prepare for that task as the time nears.
You free up precious decision-making capabilities, your mind already aware of what you’re going to be doing. Then it can focus on limiting or ignoring potential distractions.
Routines are extremely beneficial, and routines can be designed around any number of specific needs – morning routines; workouts; meal planning; scheduling meetings (or running meetings); etc.
Some examples of morning routines can be found in My Morning Routine from Benjamin Spall and Michael Xander. 99U has a small book called Manage Your Day-To-Day. And of course, Tim Ferriss’s books Tools of Titans and Tribe of Mentors are full of examples you can use.
We often second guess ourselves. The question more often than not is what if I was wrong? Then we replay the scenario, the events leading up to the decision, and the consequences.
Leaving that job, buying this house, ending the partnership. All of the thinking that drags us down emotionally, and wastes precious decision-making capital on past choices.
Instead, why not flip the narrative. Ask yourself “What if I was right?” Then all the supporting dialogue can be replaced with forward thinking. Suddenly, it matters more what you do next, rather than what led you to making the decision in the first place.