Beauty, Fashion, Travel, Fitness, Wellness and Lifestyle Blog | Emtalks


Tuesday 6 February 2018

How I Kick Start My Week, My To Do List

Hey guys, hope you’re well today! As most of you probably know, I absolutely love thinking of new ways I can feel inspired or motivated. It’s 2018, a new year and whilst I know some people don’t like seeing the new year as a way to kick start, they see it as just another day, I personally think it’s a great excuse. I know it is technically just ‘another day’ but hey, whether it’s a Monday that inspires you or a new year, a new month, use it, grab it and go for it. Today I want to talk about my top ways to start the week off the right way, I’m working with Virgin Trains on the East Coast to talk about to do lists and have a look at mine. There is obviously no right or wrong when it comes to starting the week off, but let’s look at what I do and see what helps me power through my task list. 

to do list

To Do List - I like to start the week the right way with a clear to do list, I have my list separated into two separate lists, firstly, my work to do list. I also put every day/mundane/non-work stuff onto a section too, to ensure I’m actually relaxing from work too but also getting stuff done that will help me be productive when I am going through my work to do list. So, let’s have a look at more of a non-work to do list today and then you’re gonna get a second post with my top tips of how to stick to a to-do list. 

pretty books flatlay

My Non-Work To Do List:

Spring Clean - I usually have a thorough spring clean once every few weeks as my bedroom gets so messy. I’d highly recommend cleaning as you go, so for example, unpacking your suitcase as soon as you get home, no matter how annoying it feels, it really helps. I feel that when I have a clear room I can also have a clear mind so it’s really important for me to keep things organised and tidy, it means I’m not breaking from work then to tidy up my space. My mind is clear, my space is clear and I can get on with my work to do list. 

Jo malone perfumes

Organise My Make Up - A lot of my job revolves around deliveries coming to my house and trying new make up, as incredible and exciting as it is, it means there’s a lot to organise and staying on top of it is key. I find organising and keeping on top of my make up so therapeutic and it makes my room much tidier so that’s always on my list of things to do. I kind of separate it into piles, so a pile of things I’d start to use this week, a pile of things I’m going to trial this month and so on. It really helps by just organising it into neat piles and ensuring everything is in order. Never underestimate what an organised make up cupboard can do for your mind, it really is like therapy for me haha. 


Sell/Recycle/Give - After my spring clean I always try and put stuff up to sell. I’m going to start using Depop this year (username emshelx) as it’s the easiest way to let you guys get a hold of my clothes too. Selling clothes can be a long big task in itself which is why it’s better to try and go through my wardrobe every other week to ensure I’m on top of it. I do find clearing out my wardrobe really helps me be able to actually get on with my proper work, often I can feel overwhelmed with mess and disorganisation so can’t focus on my work. I either give it my stuff charity or sell it. My rule? If I haven’t worn it for a year don’t keep it. I was really strict over Christmas and went through every item in my wardrobe and got rid of 50% of it. It felt incredible. Read here about the charities I support. 

Work Out - I always put it working out my to do list because as much as I don’t want it to come across as a chore, wellbeing is so important. Mentally, it then means I can tick it off and feel proud of myself. I actually try to work out first thing in the morning to start my day or at the end of a busy day as a ‘reward’. I have a diary and tick the days I go to the gym then it mentally makes me want to go more. Weird, but it works. I go to David Lloyd spin classes and am currently training with a personal trainer at the gym. My mind just feels incredible when I step out of the gym.

Bake Healthy Treats Ahead / Food Prep - As most of you will know by now, I absolutely love healthy treats for the week ahead. I try to make healthy, refined sugar free treats on a Sunday or a Monday. I even sometimes prep my fruit for my smoothies, freeze it and then I know I’m grabbing the good stuff throughout the week. Often we grab for the unhealthy stuff because we’re just not prepared. I’m not really good at prepping actual food because I have a weird thing about eating cold food the day after but when it comes to cookies, muffins and stuff that I can grab all week I find this really helps to keep me grabbing the good stuff. You can find my banana bread recipe here, it’s refined sugar free and so easy to whip up on a Sunday so you’re grabbing it all week. 

virgin trains

Book Any Travel In Advance - My job can be quite here, there and everywhere and a lot of the time I’m not able to make plans too far in advance, however, when I can, I ensure I book my travel in advance. One of my New Years Resolutions is to save money by trying to book wherever I can in advance. Not only does it give me peace of mind before my journey and make me feel way less anxious, but you get better deals too. I spend a lot of my time on trains from Leeds to London (whilst organising my London house drama! - sometimes 5x a week) and actually find them such a good way to get my tasks done. I can be so productive in smashing off my to do list whilst sat on a comfy train, sometimes I wish the journey was longer so I could get more done! Headphones in, world out. There is so much value in booking early, firstly, you get a nice comfy seat, lower fares and free wifi! They also have BEAM which is an onboard entertainment system so you definitely won't get bored. I always ensure I book online via virgintrainseastcoast.com purely for the free wifi alone, which is so valuable for me. I find once my travel is booked in advance too, I can organise work that needs doing before I head off to London and I can organise my meetings too so it’s better to get it booked and off my pad so then everything else falls into place. 

Shoot Content - A lot of my content is just organic content for my Youtube, Instagram and blog so I’ll usually come up with a content plan at the start of every week, including topics I really want to write about. It’s what I love doing the most so I love dedicating my time to this. I then shoot my imagery a few times a week. Generally it just depends what kind of topic comes into my mind and then I decide when to shoot it and how to shoot it. If I have ‘writers block’ I just decide not to write, I’d rather produce quality content rather than content I’ve felt forced to put out for the sake of it.

Pampering - As sad as it sounds, on my ‘for me’ to do list, I really like to have pampering on there, so that means having a nice long relaxing bath on a Sunday night, with a face mask, blow drying my hair, painting my nails and fake tanning. The up keep of pampering really takes a while so I like to block it out once a week and then I’m tanned for the whole week ahead and also, nothing relaxes me more than a steamy Jo Malone bath. Me time really is important and it’s so important to put it on your to-do list. I feel pampered, relaxed and ready to tackle my work to do list.  I also ensure working out is on my to-do list, wellbeing is SO important and is crucial when it comes to being productive at work, going to David Lloyd and working out makes me feel incredible and kicks off my week perfectly.

So there we have it, I really hope this gives you a little insight into my to do list, non-work wise. It’s so important to make time for these kinda things and then I can get on with my work. Keep an eye out for my blog post with my top tips to tackle your to do list coming later next week.

Do you have a 'non-work' to do list? Do you find writing lists helps you get ahead? Do you do any of the stuff I do?

You might also like:

6 Ways To Feel Motivated 

*This is a collaboration with Virgin Trains on the East Coast but as always is my 100% honest opinion. 

Lots of love, Em x

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