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How to get into the “zone” and get stuff done

Tricks that I use to get into my zone.

What I do to get ready so I have a decent day and accomplish things that I want to accomplish. It doesn’t matter if it’s decluttering, cleaning, organizing, writing, just feeling better about the day, if I want to accomplish something, it helps to set myself up for doing it.

A pattern to get into the zone.

#1 Get ready for the day

First off, I get up in the morning, and I get dressed and I put shoes on. I’m going to take the kids to school and shoes make me feel like I’m ready for action.

I fix my hair and makeup (one the days I don’t wear makeup, I fix my hair) it makes me feel good about myself. Then when I see myself in a reflection, I feel put together.

And I complete my morning routine.

  • Make the bed
  • Start the laundry
  • Do the dishes
  • Clean the counters off

Completing all the chores alleviates the visual reminder that I have things that I need to do.

As soon as that’s done and I can focus on other things.

#2 Make a plan

When the house is overwhelming, or you have a project that feels too big, it’s hard to chunk it down.

So I think through it in this way:

The task: Declutter the kitchen.

List all the small areas that need work:

  • sink
  • window sill
  • cookbooks
  • glasses
  • mugs
  • plates
  • serving dishes
  • pots & pans
  • bakeware
  • mixing bowls
  • measuring cups/spoons
  • utensils
  • etc.

And I continue thinking about the room and write down each category that I remember.

Then I had to pick one small task each day or set a timer and work on one category until the timer rings.

I like to remember Brian Tracey’s advice:

If you have to eat a frog, eat it first thing in the morning. If you have to eat two frogs, eat the biggest one first.

That thing that you don’t want to do… get it done first.

And then the day feels so much better.

Things I avoid

✔️Checking my email first thing in the morning.

Because I will read them, and I will start responding, and pretty soon all my time is gone – or my creativity is because now I’m thinking about all the things people emailed me about.

My best time for any kind of work is the first thing in the morning.

So if I get distracted with checking email, or comments, or see what people are doing on social media, then my whole day is spent, and I don’t get anything done and I feel lousy about myself.

✔️Listening for notifications

The only notifications I allow on my phone are texts and phone calls.

But a lot of times when I sit down to work in the morning, I’ll turn my phone off so I really can focus.

When I get something accomplished, I feel better, and since my work is done, I can feel good about checking the emails and the notifications.


Other great motivation tools:

The 5-Second Rule

The Miracle Morning


What makes the most difference?

Having a plan.

If you randomly work on something, you will only randomly see progress. Have a clear goal in mind. That may be building cleaning/tidying habits or simplifying one room in your home. Either way, have a goal in mind.

Then break it down, give yourself small chunks to work on and focus on it.

Get up in the morning thinking about it, thinking “this is what I’m going to do today.”

Make your goal manageable.

You want to be able to get up in the morning and know that you can accomplish it and get the job done. If you accomplish more than you set out to do, then great, but at the very least, you have something that you have accomplished and you can feel good about it for the day.

What I do to get ready so I have a decent day and accomplish things that I want to accomplish. It doesn't matter if it's decluttering, cleaning, organizing, writing, just feeling better about the day, if I want to accomplish something, it helps to set myself up for doing it. #decluttering #motivation

About the author, Rachel

Hi there! I’m Rachel Jones, and I founded Nourishing Minimalism in 2012 at the beginning of my minimalist journey. If you're looking for encouragement in your journey, I go live in my FREE Facebook Groups every weekday- feel free to join me there: Nourishing Minimalism Facebook Group


  1. Meeghan on 06/09/2020 at 2:19 AM

    Hi Rachel, very timely quick video! My day was a write off today and it’s easy to get down on myself about unaccomplished tasks. It’s easy to understand how little people can be distracting because I am the same way. I am very much an introvert and require a significant amount of downtime. My 7yr old wakes up talking and asking questions the entire day and we have a 6month old foster baby that is an absolute blessing but I have never cleaned up so many poop explosions! Your advice and encouragement are always something I very much enjoy! Thank you.
    On a June 1st I started to do the Nourishing Minimalism course from 3yrs ago again. Still on day 2 and trying desperately to keep up to 1 task a day.
    Love this course, just having a tough go this time around.
    I’m curious if you are still doing the cooking videos or meal planning?
    Be well!
    -Meeghan 🙂

    • Rachel Jones on 06/12/2020 at 9:35 PM

      I Meeghan!! I’m glad you’re doing the course again- go you!! It’s tough with a 6-month old! I did a menu planning course, but I don’t put a lot of effort into cooking (and doing the cooking videos ended up as too much on my plate! lol) these days. I enjoy it… but it takes so much more effort than talking about decluttering. 😉 If interested, you can find the menu planning course on my products page.

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