Preparation is involved in all aspects of our daily lives. If we’re hosting a dinner party, we prepare by planning a menu, buying groceries, and cooking ahead of time. If we have a test, we prepare by studying. Being prepared is also a necessary aspect of our work life; our days aren’t likely to be at maximum productivity if we haven’t done some level of planning ahead of time.

Here are some preparation ideas you can incorporate into your routine:

The night before

  1. Pick out your outfit: Laying out the clothes you want to wear the next day will let you know if anything needs to be ironed and will save time in the morning. Plus, you might get to sleep in for a few extra minutes.
  2. Pack your lunch: Scrambling in the morning to make a lunch increases the chances that you’ll nix it and end up ordering out. Eating a healthful, balanced lunch can give you the energy you need throughout the day.
  3. Get a good night’s rest: Whether you require 10 hours of sleep or 7, make sure your body is well rested for the next day.

The morning of

  1. Check weather and traffic reports: This might not be necessary every day, but it can’t hurt. Rain might not have been in the forecast the night before, but you might need an umbrella now, and there might be more traffic because of it.
  2. Fill up a water bottle: Bring a reusable water bottle to work so you can continue to fill it up throughout the day and stay hydrated. Even if you have another go-to drink in the morning, it’s a good idea to add water to that list.
  3. Leave on time: Give yourself enough time in the morning so that you can arrive on time. A huge part of being prepared is being on time (early is even better!).

Of course, don’t forget to regularly look at your agenda to figure out how to prepare for any upcoming meetings or events! Which of these steps do you currently take in preparing for work? Which would you like to try out?