Get Your Day Crafting Five A Day

What five things could you craft into every day to help your life flourish? This simple intervention goes to the heart of the Day Crafting philosophy – the good life is more days with time for these activities. The ingredients for a good life are simple, the challenge is intentionally making time for them and giving them our attention.

Two friends hugging

The critical difference between a languishing life and a flourishing life is fairly prosaic. It might boil down to the Day Crafting systems we have in place to enable good habits and the skilled use of time.

People are attracted to the alternative fantasy path to the good life, thinking that a few memorable events, accomplishments, material possessions or status will get them there. Worse still, many people have bought into the happy-future idea that means postponing happiness – or not even starting the happiness project until the conditions are right, turning happiness into a condition: I’ll be happy when ...

To clarify, the challenge you need to become skilled at is: how can you shape the very day you’re living?

Try this Five A Day tool as a Day Crafting primer. Try it for one day. See how you go. We understand that our nutritional health is made up of daily beneficial practice (five fruit & veg) rather than eating junk for a month and then salad for one day. So it is with our wellbeing. It is made up of daily practice not weeks of mindless misery with a happy moment once in a while.

NB: A lot of the ideas below have certain factors in common. They’re autonomous, you’re in control and the choice to do them is up to you. They’re self-contained and you can be self-reliant as you do them. They’re adaptable to a variety of situations and can fit into various gaps in your days. They have immediate and accumulative effects and you’re intrinsically motivated, you’re doing them because you want to, not because you have to. These same factors are good ingredients to apply much further in your days, as you craft your work tasks for example.

Before you choose some optional five a day activities, there are some non-negotiables that you should have daily including safety and security, good sleep, nutrition and exercise etc.

The Practice

Here is the experiment. Choose five day enhancing activities to schedule into today or tomorrow. This needn’t mean adding new activities into an already squeezed schedule. Try tweaking existing activities (listen to an amazing audio book whilst cooking or commuting). Or make time available from unproductive activities (excessive social media or TV). And some of the suggestions below don’t take much time and can double up. Hug a friend you’re connecting with whilst laughing in a park out for a jog = five in one activity!

What are your five a day activities? You may already have lots of ideas of things to do or be or feel or experience. You can tweak the experiment and overcome habituation by choosing five at random and mixing what is on your list regularly to benefit from novelty. This site will generate a random five for you.

     
  1. Reading for pleasure.
  2.  
  3. An active rather than passive leisure activity.
  4.  
  5. Meaningful connection to someone else.
  6.  
  7. Meaningful connection to nature.
  8.  
  9. Laughing.
  10.  
  11. Watch a really good film with no distractions.
  12.  
  13. Exercise.
  14.  
  15. Give someone else your full attention.
  16.  
  17. Take time to talk to the people who serve you.
  18.  
  19. Take high quality breaks.
  20.  
  21. Stretching.
  22.  
  23. Reawaken a dormant hobby.
  24.  
  25. Have a hug / share affection.
  26.  
  27. Get outside.
  28.  
  29. Get lots of natural light soon after you get up.
  30.  
  31. Really enjoy good food.
  32.  
  33. Meditation.
  34.  
  35. Draw / paint something.
  36.  
  37. Giving thanks.
  38.  
  39. Making meaningful progress on a project.
  40.  
  41. Find a different route with time to stop during it.
  42.  
  43. Be of service to someone who needs help.
  44.  
  45. Contact a friend you’ve not talked to for a long time.
  46.  
  47. Learn something.
  48.  
  49. Rest properly.
  50.  
  51. Set an intention for the day.
  52.  
  53. Find a way to be generous.
  54.  
  55. Do all of your work in 5 hours.
  56.  
  57. Eat out.
  58.  
  59. Savour sensory input.
  60.  
  61. Make something.
  62.  
  63. Tidy up / simplify / go minimal.
  64.  
  65. Enjoying music, listening to or making.
  66.  
  67. Challenge yourself, step out of your comfort zone.
  68.  
  69. Get into a flow activity.
  70.  
  71. Be kind to future you by preparing something in advance.
  72.  
  73. Get up half hour earlier.
  74.  
  75. Journal.
  76.  
  77. Do a random act of kindness.
  78.  
  79. Wear an outfit that you love.
  80.  
  81. Make time for yourself.
  82.  
  83. Be mindful during transitions between activities.
  84.  
  85. Celebrate at the moment of accomplishing anything.
  86.  
  87. Disconnect from tech.
  88.  
  89. Send me any ideas you have not on this list.

Written by Bruce Stanley on Fri, June 04, 2021

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