Are you early? Do you get an early start on your day? Do you arrive to appointments early? Do you finish projects and tasks ahead of deadlines?  Are you the Early Bird?


The Early Bird is the one who is up before others, the one who arrives first, the one who finishes things ahead of schedule, and the one who acts while others are still mired in indecision.


Here are 15 Ways to be the Early Bird:


Get up 30 Minutes Early – One of the best ways to be the Early Bird is to get up earlier. Start small. Try setting your alarm only half an hour before you normally get up.


Assign Personal Deadlines – Want to be early with deliverables? Ensure that you set deadlines that are earlier than projects are actually due. Making your personal deadlines early, will ensure you finish early.


Don’t Schedule Back-to-Back Appointments – People will schedule themselves for meetings that run 9-10, 10-11, and then 11-12. Guess what? Unless you have a teleporter, you will be late to the next meeting. Give yourself a gap between scheduled meetings for travel and catch up.


Plan to Arrive 15 Minutes Early – Most people try to arrive at 1PM for the 1PM meeting. That is where they fail. Plan to be there at 1245PM. 15 minutes early is on time in most cases.


Timeshift – The Early Bird knows that doing things when others are not can save a lot time. For example, shifting your commute 15 minutes earlier could save you 45 minutes in traffic. The same goes for things like the gym, the grocery store, etc.


Check the Address Before You Go - How many times have you headed to an appointment only to discover that you don’t know exactly where it is? Even in the days of GPS, make sure you know where you are going before you leave.


Confirm the Appointment – Ever go to a meeting or appointment only to find out that it was cancelled? Or the other person forgot? Taking 5 minutes to confirm your appointments can save literally hours of wasted time.




Defend Your Time – The Early Bird spends their time on themselves before letting others take it. Ensure that you don’t let others steal your time.


Make Decisions – The Early Bird makes decisions. He or she has often already completed a task while others are still trying to decide what to do.


Look Ahead at the Calendar – Don’t let things sneak up on you. If you are only looking at today’s calendar, you will be blindsided by upcoming calendar items. Look at today and down the road.


Overestimate Time for Tasks – When doing something for the first time, it will often take 4-5X’s what you estimated. Allow for this extra time.


Use a Packlist – Using lists lets you perform repetitive tasks quicker and more accurately. Packing is one of those tasks that truly benefits from a preset list. Leveraging a packlist allows you to pack in a fraction of the time without forgetting anything important.


Pack the Day Before - Always, always, always pack the night before. Never pack the morning of a trip. Inevitably, you will realize at the last moment that you do not have something.


Plan Your Day – Taking a few moments in the morning each day to plan your day can prevent complications and life friction. A planned day is always more efficient than making it up as you go along.


Prepare For You Day – Planning is good, but preparing is better. Not only knowing what you are going to do, but getting ready for those activities. Whether it is reviewing materials for a meeting, or packing the essentials for an errand.