For me, getting Mondays started on the right foot was one of the hardest things to do. I would ease myself into the work week like I ease myself into a swimming pool that is uncomfortably too cold…anxiously, rigidly and not looking forward to it.

Once in the office, I’d start off slow. I just went through the motions of opening the doors, checking email and voice mail, and letting what I found dictate the morning and ultimately the week—yuck!

This is not the way to begin a productive week or grow a business.

I came to realize I could enjoy my business much more and get the high payoff items that I enjoy doing done, by making a few little adjustments.

By moving from a haphazard start of the week to a set routine that fits my personality, I’m now jazzed on Sunday evenings looking forward to the Monday morning lineup.

Here are a few things to avoid doing and a few things to do when setting up your own Monday morning routine…with a bang!

Things to avoid first thing Monday morning:

1. The things you don’t like to do. Simply avoiding the items that are a drain or a drag for you will make a HUGE impact. Getting this necessary, but draining, stuff out of the way early in the week may be a good idea, but not the first thing Monday morning.

2. Busy work/tasks. Sometimes we business owners do low payoff chores thinking we are making a huge positive difference in our business. In reality we’re wasting our valuable (and expensive) executive time. Save these mindless tasks for slow times during the week when you need a physical or mental break.

3. Jumping head first into Monday morning fires. Some business owners go to the other extreme and dive into a series of “emergencies” first thing Monday morning. Rarely is something so dire that it needs to be addressed first thing.

4. Checking email and voice mail. Once you open this box its impossible to close. Your customers, employees and vendors will pull you in all directions and your business goes nowhere.

Things to do first thing Monday morning:

1. The tasks you enjoy doing the most. After a relaxing weekend it’s hard to get moving and motivated on Monday morning. Head-off this potential lull by planning to do the things that you enjoy doing first thing Monday morning. Maybe it’s reviewing the previous week’s spreadsheet reports, writing a marketing piece or brainstorming a new service/product—you know what gets you excited about your business…find it and plan to do it every Monday morning, first thing.

2. Invest 15 minutes pinpointing one thing in your business that could be done better this week in comparison to last week. Take this a step further and write it in an improvement log to track your progress—this is a fun, easy and highly effective exercise to get your engine running.

3. Invest 15 minutes uncovering the 3 most important high payoff tasks/items that need to get done this week—this is another fun, easy and highly effective exercise to get your week off on the right foot.

It doesn’t take much to make a huge impact on your business. Change the way you begin your week and you will transform your business.

Your Work Smart challenge is to block off 1 to 1.5 hours of time first thing Monday morning and devote this time to the tasks that you enjoy doing and the two 15 minute exercises. You won’t regret it!

Author's Bio: 

Ed Toups, the founder of Office Ready LLC, provides entrepreneurs with a protected haven for their creativity and productivity to soar while introducing them to resources which simplify running a small business. Get Office Ready's FREE "How to Immediately Increase Your Profits Using These 10 Simple Systems" report and Ed's FREE small business success how-to tips at