+ Our New Kitchen Design

Our current kitchen

Before moving into our new flat, we were convinced that our first DIY job would be ripping up the flooring. We've inherited some Spanish villa-style tiles throughout the house - including the bedroom! In our first week living here we realised we'd overlooked a bigger issue. While the kitchen looks fine, there were a few deal breakers for us:

  • Our plates don't fit in ANY of the cupboards
  • The oven is so old that the rubber seal has stopped working and sags, leaving a gap which makes cooking that little bit harder.
  • The wall units are so low that our knife block barely fits underneath, and our coffee machine has to be pulled towards the edge of the worktop so that we can fill it!

Yep, some of these issues could be resolved with a handyman, but we figured popping into Funktional Kitchens for a free design service would help make our minds up. I love a more traditional, rustic kitchen whereas Ned's all about contemporary design - anything that would feel at home in a bachelor pad basically! The designer had his work cut out..

The Free Plan and Design Service

Andy at Funktional Kitchens sat us down for about an hour, talking through the options for units, appliances and asked us basic questions like "double, 1.5 or single sink?" We then sent through our floor plan and some photos so he could get to work on our digital mockup based on our choices, as you can see below:

Our first kitchen render

Once you're happy with the overall vision and want to discuss next steps prior to actually getting it installed, you hand over £500 as a deposit. Even better, you can also start to pick out accessories and flooring which Andy then helpfully inserted into the digital render. See below for our choice of trio pendant from Jim Lawrence. Andy then found similar lighting in his tool and sent us back a mock-up:

Digital render of trio pendant lighting in the kitchen design

Some Tips:

  • Everything will be itemized in the quotation. Take a look and see if there's any easy switches you can make yourself to cut costs. For example, Andy chose an awesome Siemens integrated microwave, but I found an even cheaper one online with a grill function.
  • Does each cupboard really have to be a functional unit? We saved ourselves several hundred quid by making an awkward corner unit a superficial panel. Every unit that had to be made to measure was considerably more expensive, so avoid these where you can.
  • Some accessories that seem luxurious and unnecessary are not always that expensive. We are getting a 6-bottle wine fridge to add a unique selling point and its ~£250

What We Chose:

The Cabinets - German supplier Häcker offer three different finishes in their Classic range, all at varying prices. We're opting for the mid-range (slightly better finish, less IKEA) in magnolia.

Wall Tiles for the Splashback - Shelter Island - Harbour View tiles from Fired Earth. It's nigh on impossible to find cheaper herringbone marble tiles from anywhere else despite searching relentlessly.
Fired Earth's Shelter Island Harbour view tiles (marble look/herringbone)

Floor tiles - Ca'Pietra Shepton Flagstones, via Tiles Etc, had the right shade of grey to make me swoon and enough rugged specks to please Ned. Our builder told us that slate tiles are a bugger to look after and that we're better off going for porcelain, but the look of these tiles is so spectacular its hard to listen to sensible advice.
Ca'Pietra Shepton Flagstones

The worktop - Against my better judgement, knowing full well all the oiling and extra care it requires, we're in love with Spëkva's range of wooden worktops. Ours will come in the Bavarian Wild finish. I was super sad that my dreams of an island kitchen wouldn't come to fruition in this flat, but Andy our designer really delivered with his 'peninsula' design, which is made from the same wood.

Chimney Extractor Hood - Initially we opted for a concealed extractor, but the more I looked at the initial designs, the more the main wall seemed to be OTT on the cupboards! Instead, I opted for the Siemens iQ300 chimney extractor. As you can see from the image below on the left, it really helps to break up the never-ending wall of units:

Kitchen with and without the chimney hood

The next step is to sign off each of the 'order of goods', pay 35% of the total cost and then wait until February when it will get installed. Funktional Kitchens don't actually install everything - they only do a dry fit. Be prepared to fork out an additional costs of ££££s to get the appliances plumbed in and any extra building work sorted too.

I'll update you in February when the work is complete!

+ Istanbul City Break: The Walks of Turkey Tour

Walks of Turkey

A couple of weeks ago I was invited to attend a work offsite in Istanbul. Naturally I accepted the offer, although my excitement dipped a bit when I realised I'd have to wake up at 4am on my birthday to fly out! Ned came out to visit me the day after so that we could enjoy an Istanbul city break together.

I bagged a room at the Raffles Hotel in Istanbul, complete with a giant balcony as well as his n' hers sinks and the comfiest bed I've ever laid in. Downstairs there's a gorgeous spa area with a vitality pool, indoor pool and a row of loungers with complimentary Egyptian cotton towel to dry off.  Visiting Istanbul in October wasn't ideal with the rain only ceasing on our final day. But, it did mean we were lucky enough to take in a view of Bosphorus Bridge from our balcony:

Bosphorus bridge as seen from our Raffles hotel room

In order to see as much as possible with the one full day off while out there, we decided to take Walks of Turkey's Istanbul in a Day Tour which is essentially two of their tours rolled into one. You can easily see the sights without a tour guide, but the benefits are numerous:

1) They buy all tickets in advance so you can stroll past the queues

2) No need to worry about checking directions

3) The tour guide is on hand to answer any questions you have - our guide was extremely knowledgeable and helped really bring to life each attraction

4) Small group tour size of no more than 15. Ours was just five people!

Hagia Sophia

What an experience it is to step inside Hagia Sophia. The building (bear with me) is a church built on top of a church built on top of a Pagan temple, then turned mosque, now a museum.

Our guide was extremely knowledgeable of this architectural beauty and told us many, many facts about its history which really helped to bring it all alive. What really captured my imagination was how in one building I could witness Islamic influences such as the minbar (pulpit found in a mosque), mosaics of Jesus Christ, Greek graffiti and Viking scripture all at once! It also bore the scars of changing times - you can still see the crevices where gold plating was ransacked by 13th-century crusaders.

A great fact was how the portraits of seraphs (positioned in the arches underneath the domes) were painted in that position to symbolise the weight of the universe they carry on their shoulders. During the Muslim occupation of the space, the faces were actually covered. The faces we now see today were painted by the Fossati brothers from Switzerland in 1847.

Tip #1: Head to Hagia Sophia before 9am and make sure you're first in line. After security, walk straight into the main building before it gets clogged with other tourists

Tip #2: Don't forget to rotate your thumb inside the wishing column and make a wish while you're there!

Sultan Ahmed Mosque (Blue Mosque)

Blue Mosque, Istanbul, Turkey
Inside the Blue Mosque, Istanbul, Turkey
This is a few minutes' walk from Hagia Sophia and is still in use by Muslims to this day. Because of this, you have to time your arrival at the Mosque so that it doesn't clash with prayer times.

Tip: Go on a weekday as the weekends see if fill up with lots of tourists.

Basilica Cisterns

Basilica Cisterns - Istanbul, Turkey
Again, we waltzed past the queues thanks to our tour guide and went underground to take in the sight of 336 illuminated pillars in a body of water. When the cisterns were first built, the faces on the two Medusa pillars would have been submerged under water. It's only now the body of water has decreased that we can see the faces.

Fuego Restaurant was our next step for a buffet lunch. The Turkish bread was still warm from the oven, and they served us stuffed aubergine and chicken and lamb kofte accompanied with some superb sauces. The cost of the lunch was included as part of the tour which is a nice bonus.

Grand Bazaar & Spice Bazaar

The Grand Bazaar hosts over 3000 stalls, selling gold jewellery, fake designer handbags, trinkets, lanterns, scarves, copperware ... the list goes on. We spent over an hour walking through both bazaars and surrounding streets and only really had five minutes to stop and purchase anything.

We did get a 10-minute reprieve to try out some pomegranate tea and various Turkish delights. After the spice bazaar, we walked down a hill and were then escorted up a flight of decrepit stairs towards a rooftop! The exact location (based on my phone GPS) is here on Google Maps if you want to discover it for yourself.

Tip: Visiting the place on your own (with the help of this map) and NOT as part of a group tour.

Staying in the brand new Zorlu Center, it was even more apparent to me what a city of contrasts Istanbul is. I can't wait to visit again one day so that I can hopefully to see it in warm weather, under a blue sky. Oh, and buy myself a Turkish rug. Thanks to The Blonde Abroad for her write-up of the tour - this actually convinced me to go with Walks of Turkey!

+ Ideas for a Before 30 Bucket List

Ideas for a 'Before 30' Bucket List - give blood, run a half marathon, grow your own food + more www.jeniwren.com

After turning 29 last Tuesday, I decided to create my very own 'before 30' bucket list to make sure I'm staying true to myself and making the most of being young(ish). In the words of Olivia Wilde, turning 30 is your 'Cut the Bullshit and Go Be Awesome stage', so why not start a bucket list at 29 and get a head start?

My 'Before 30' Bucket List in Full:

Give Blood It's so easy to do this - you can sign up here if you're in the UK. They need 70,000 people daily  to donate blood, so I'm committing to doing this every 16 weeks from here on out.

Run a Half Marathon I ran 21km in the Royal Parks Half Marathon and it was one of the best things I've ever pushed myself to accomplish. Despite a pretty lax training schedule, I am so proud of my 1:54:08 time :)

Grow Your Own Food Ok, so my Alan Titchmarsh gardening book has barely been opened, but I want to be able to cook a meal one day that is entirely down to my own hard grafting. I'll read through this advice from organic farmer Alice Holden, and a quick way to get started is to follow these tips on how to regrow food from kitchen scraps.  It's amazing that you can regrow celery, spring onions and leeks just by sticking the leftover root in a glass of water and placing in sunlight for a few days.

Print Out Your Instagram Photos This is a really easy task to accomplish, and I love the idea of printing off my favourite snaps from my twenties in a gorgeous Cheerz box.

Sing to an Audience This one is most likely going to be achieved by dragging my mates to a Lucky Voice venue, but promisingly my local area now has group singing lessons. I have a whole year to find the balls to actually sign up!

Grow Twitter following by x% I recently started using Crowdfire to identify other Twitter followers with similar interests to me. With a 9-to-6pm job I really feel that scheduling social media posts is the best option for me, but I haven't yet got myself into a proper cadence with this. The Crowdfire blog post explaining the science of getting new Twitter followers is definitely worth a read. This is the kind of goal that requires a shitload of daily perseverance, but with the help of tools like Crowdfire I'm sure I'll get there!

Take an Evening Class Since I moved to London over five years ago, enrolling on a City Lit course has been on my to-do list and it's still not been crossed off! From interior design for smaller spaces to the Psychology of Jung, I'm sure there's one class that will motivate me to finally sign up once and for all.

Go Roller Blading in Your Local Park I used to spend summer evenings as a kid swooshing around my street in a snazzy pair of roller blades, and I can't for the life of me work out why I stopped. I think attending a London Friday Night Skate is a great start to getting back into the rhythm!

Luxurious Spa Weekend Everyone who's survived three solid decades on this earth deserves a luxurious spa treat! While I've stayed in many hotels with saunas and been on a day visit to the Covent Garden Sanctuary spa, it is 100% my intention to spend a weekend in a Champney's retreat to revive and rejuvenate.

Write a Kindle Single: Another fab idea is to 'Write a Kindle Single'. This is definitely a stretch goal for me -  the length criteria of 5,000 to 30,000 words is definitely achievable and more details of the submission process for the UK are here.

Go Offline for a Whole Week! Since the age of 12 when I could access the internet with a dial-up modem, I don't think I've been disconnected more than a couple of days at a time. I get the shakes just imagining going cold turkey on the internet, but I bet it really changes your perspective on how much time we spend online and if it's actually a good thing or not.

Begin Your Memoir So I am fully aware that I haven't lived long enough or intensely enough to warrant writing a full blown memoir, but setting a goal to complete one of these memoir writing prompts is definitely a start.

Accomplish a GoodReads Challenge  For the last two years now I've been setting myself a reading goal of ~25 books a year. Before I did this, I think I would get through ten max. While it can be tempting to choose shorter reads to 'cheat' your way to completion, I find it really valuable to track my reading habits and it motivates me to set aside time to keep on reading. So far, I've read 22 out of my 25 books goal for 2015, allllmost there!

Volunteer Although I'm not exactly a stranger to volunteering, having helped out at a special-needs social club while at university, there's definitely more I can do.

See the Northern Lights For me, my dream destination is spending a long weekend staying in one of the glass igloos in Finland's Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort.

Send a Friend a Handwritten Letter I recently went to Paperchase to buy some premium writing paper, and even bought a gorgeous address rubber stamp from Etsy (handmade by Poumi) to sign off my letters.
Poumi address stamp

Draw Up Your Family Tree Technically you don't even need to draw this up yourself now that there's a whole host of geneaology apps available to do all the hard work for you. I only know as far back as my granddad's granddad and I'd love to trace my roots back further.

Make an Awesome Tiramisu This one is on my bucket list for Ned! It's hands-down my favourite dessert but I haven't got the foggiest on how to make a halfway decent one. I'm tempted to start off with this 'easy' recipe and see how it goes!

Write Up Your Fave 20's Moments This decade really has been defined by change - in my twenties I've travelled the world, started my career, bought a flat, fallen in love and became the owner of cute little Chickpea!

Begin a Memory Jar This sounds an eeeckle bit cheesy to me, but at the same time how much fun would it be to wait ten years and relive moments from the past?! You could create one each year to collect the best things that happened, write a holiday memory on a pebble during each trip, or maybe even write a special moment on a cork from a celebratory bottle of champagne. You could also take a different approach and create a jar with all your hopes for the next year, and then open it a year later and see what actually got accomplished.

Take a Wine Tasting Course I am unashamed in my love for a good glass of red wine, but actually I have very little understanding of what makes a good wine 'good'. While I've been to Napa's wineries, I have zero knowledge on how to properly taste wine. I'm always so impressed by sommeliers and their ability to pair wine with complex dishes, and to even have 1% of their knowledge would be good enough for me. I think I'll sign up to the West London Wine School (one of the top workshops/classes in London according to TripAdvisor), or failing that head over to my local Highbury Vintners as they often hold wine tasting events.

While looking for inspiration for other bucket list ideas, I also found the cute illustration above from Buck and Libby. There's some amazing ideas here, and the ones that I'll apply to my own bucket list are as to "send snail mail at least once a month", 'make a list of things I did in my twenties' and the super easy 'print off my Instagram photos' idea.

Buck and Libby's Special To Do List

Wish me luck as I aim to achieve all of the above on my before 30 bucket list (and hopefully more) in the next 356 days!

+ Malta Travel Tips: Blue Lagoon, Valletta, Mdina & More

Malta Travel Tips
I swear the best holidays are the kind you book last-minute and barely have a plan for! My friends sorted everything for this trip, but I almost redeemed myself with my incessant use of the Malta Travel Guide app by Triposo (Android/iOS) for the amazingly helpful offline maps and short summaries of local attractions. For my spin on Malta travel advice, keep on reading.


This area is ideally situated to visit the cultural hotspots of Valetta and Mdina, and it was also just about walking distance to St Julian's, where all the nightlife happens. This AirBnB served us really well, if you ignore the slightly crap shower. Our AirBnB host also recommended eCabs to get there from the airport and the journey was barely 20 minutes door to door.

Tignes Point

This is the peninsula of Sliema and it's where you'll find all the main ferry services to Valetta, Gozo, Comino Bay as well as Sicily, which is apparently only an hour and a half away. If you're already starting to miss good old Britain, well fear not as there's a Marks & Sparks and BHS... not to mention a huge shopping mall called The Point on the peninsula (ironically full of winter clothes).

The real highlight of Tignes Point has to be the legend below - Mr Cocktail Van!

Mr Cocktail van at Tignes Point

As we walked down the harbour with a (slightly weak but nevertheless much appreciated) cocktail in hand, we had the pick of dozens of cruises. In the end we handed over 30€ to Supreme Cruises for a traditional harbour cruise and the Gozo, Comino, and Blue Lagoon Cruise. The traditional harbour cruise was a 'freebie' thrown in and we were super excited to set off, despite the 45-minute delay.

Another tip for you - don't bother with the traditional harbour cruise as one of the highlights of this cruise was the majestic cluster of oil rigs to which the guy with microphone commented 'we haven't found oil yet'.

Eating Out in Sliema:

Ta' Kris - What an epic last supper this place was. We found this gem of a place tucked away in a side-alley, we had no ides what food orgasm awaited us! My perfectly cooked rib-eye steak was washed down by a glass (or two) of my fave  Nero D'Avola red wine. Side note: the staff were really chatty and welcoming. The Irish waitress told us to say to her lovely son Donovan if we see him, as he's recently moved to London and is working at a wine bar near Borough Market. Well, we can't go back on our word so me and my friends  have a drinks date scheduled for "Operation Find Donovan" in Borough market very soon!

Surfside - probably one of the worst pizzas I've eaten in my life but it's a good place to catch the sport, and they also hand out cards to get a free bottle of wine with every 2 mains ordered.

Il Gabbana - This beachside bar is picture-perfect and does amazing smoothies, providing me a much-needed cure for my hangover! However, they served the french toast on what was essentially a hamburger bun, and my poached eggs were rock hard.


Wow, what a beautiful gem this place was. Super quiet but everywhere you turn you see elderly people staring our of their windows as the world passes by, stairs arching off into the horizon and LOTS of galerijas (wooden balconies) to add some colour to the setting.

Republic Square

Once you get off the cruise, the best thing to do is aimlessly wander the cobbled streets. We did this and ended up in Republic Square where we swiftly stopped at Eddie's Cafe for a round of aperol spritzes and a quick bite to eat. The square itself has lots of space so worth stopping for an al fresco snack here.

Upper & Lower Barrakka Gardens, Valletta

Upper & Lower Barraka Gardens

This place offers a stunning view of the Grand Harbour, as well as some great photo opportunities among the arches with the ocean in the background.

There's a whole army of cute little cats and you'll also spot some rare tropical plants within the garden itself.

Top tip - get to the Upper Barrakka Gardens for midday so that you get to watch the saluting battery.

St. Julian's

Based on my stay, I can safely say that this place is the nightlife hub of the island.

  • There's some really fun Irish pubs. At The Dubliner we scored some amazingly cheap wine, and Cork's Irish Pub provided some of the most enjoyable karaoake sessions I've ever witnessed :)
  • If you have the energy, Triq San Gorg provides several nightclubs. The choice of establishments were a bit too "Magaluf" for us so we hastily departed and sought refuge in an Irish pub.
  • We ate out at Cafe Bocconchino but if we'd had a bit more spare dollar The Barracuda is meant to be one of the best for fine dining.
  • For balmy evenings, Piazza Cascata has an open-air bar but the cocktail we had was pretty weak :/


Mdina is a medieval walled town that is at once rugged and beautiful. We were SO certain this was the place Cersei Lannister did the nude walk of shame in Game of Thrones, but turns out that was filmed in Croatia. Even so, the Mdina city gate is actually used for the King's Landing Gate:

Mdina doubles up as a filming location for King's Landing's Gate

The old city has such narrow cobbled streets that cars can barely fit round it, meaning your entire time spent in the walled city is super quiet and calming - its nicknamed the 'silent city' by the locals as a result. You can make like a medieval traveller and pay for a horse and carriage ride around too.

Mdina Cathedral took my breath away, taking centre stage in the quiet St Paul's Square. Even more amazing for us, a wedding ceremony was taking place and so the cathedral had a beautiful white carpet rolled out. A few tourists (us included) also poked our heads in to see the stunning bride and groom.

St Paul's Square, Mdina

Gozo, Comino & the Blue Lagoon

Malta's sister island Gozo has some areas of natural beauty to offer, but a few hours there as part of our sightseeing bus tour did the job. The main sight we saw was the Azure Window, as well as few derelict houses along the way... nothing else was all that memorable to be honest.

According to Trip Advisor there are only three attractions on Comino Island, with the Blue Lagoon being the #1 choice. For me, it's the standout destination from my whole Malta trip, despite the fact it's full of tourists and we only spent an hour or two there. I'll let the pictures do the talking.

Blue Lagoon, Comino, Malta


+ Getting into Good Habits

How to Get into Good Habits via jeniwren.com

Now that I'm settled into my new flat, and getting into a routine during my work-week, I've been thinking about changes I can make to really boost what I do with my time before heading into the office. Here's a rundown of the most useful tips I've come across.

Morning Rituals

Don't Press Snooze!

Thomas Frank has an almost foolproof method for waking up at an acceptable time: "I threaten myself with both public shame and monetary loss". In his article Prime Yourself for a Productive Day, he explains that he uses beeminder.com. This site helps you stick to your goal/ritual by combining "self-tracking and commitment contracts: keep all your datapoints on a Yellow Brick Road to your goal or we take your money". Thomas is so serious about this that he also created an IFTTT recipe, which will report you for sleeping in!

Morning Pages

Julia Cameron pioneered a tool called 'Morning Pages', which requires completing three pages of longhand morning writing. This is by no means meant to be creative writing, but instead gives you a forum to tap into your consciousness and let out any issues that are bugging you, tasks you need to do, general thoughts that won't get out of your mind. Julia believes your Morning Pages should be "whining, petty, grumpy.. whatever you happen to be". By writing out all of these 'cloud thoughts', you're effectively decluttering your mind, freeing up more space in your consciousness throughout the day.

I barely ever pick up a pen now but bloggers such as Mari L McCarthy prefer to use fountain pen and paper for their daily Morning Pages. Bakari Chavanu relies on good old technology, utilizing the Day One app or 750words.com.

Habit Stacking

James Clear says Habit Stacking is pretty simple - just insert the habit you want to initiate into your routine via this sentence "After/Before [CURRENT HABIT], I will [NEW HABIT]."

One habit I've chosen is to do lunges while brushing my teeth - some of the comments on Jamie's blog also mention doing squats on your pee break or while drying your hair!

Eat & Drink Well

Cathryn Lavery opts for an ice-cold glass of water, whereas Amber Rae swears by "warm water, lemon, turmeric, and raw honey". My Morning Routine has interviewed so many people now that they have breakfast statistics! Fruit, eggs, bread or oatmeal are the most popular options.

I particularly admire the routine of Ellie Krieger who mixes "yogurt, milk, oats, vanilla, cinnamon, and honey, then stir in some quartered grapes and almonds, and put it in jars to sit in the fridge overnight". I don't think I have the energy to chop things up and prep the day before... this post is about morning rituals, not evening rituals, after all!

When skimming through the posts at MyMorningRoutine.com, I swear half of the interviewees also mentioned the 'Bulletproof breakfast'. I haven't investigated this in much detail, but the reviews on Amazon look promising.

Get Moving

Exercise: James Clear has a great article on the daily routines  of writers, and from there I learnt that Kurt Vonnegut did 'pushups and sit ups all the time', and AJ Jacobs writes 'while walking on a treadmill'! Don DeLillo tells the Paris Review that he writes for about four hours and then goes running. Not enough for you? Gwyneth Paltrow tells WWD that she fits in two hours of exercise every morning!

In Scott Gardiner's article on Medium, he explains his daily 20/20/20 routine, This consists of 20 pushups, 20 squats, and 20 jumping jacks". Easy to remember, quick (just 5 mins) and varied enough to not get bored.


Michelle Phan shares 4 great morning stretches on her website - a neck and shoulder stretch, chest flex, standing stretch and a hamstring stretch. I've actually gone as far as printing off her diagrams and sticking them to my bedroom wall, resolving to do these daily! Michelle Greenman also shares a great scan of recommended morning stretches on her site too.

Evening Routine

No Bright Screens in the Bedroom

Bright light from laptops and phones 'can suppress your body’s production of melatonin and make it harder to sleep'. Ned and I are part of the way there, where we have made a conscious decision to have no TV in the bedroom. The next step is a full-on device ban! In the meantime, I use a black background setting when reading eBooks and have heard good things about Flux, if you absolutely can't get away from your laptop in bed.

Dental Hygiene

This one took me several years to really grasp the importance, after yet another stern word from my hygienist. The key thing here is 'habit stacking' as mentioned above. I now floss a minimum of once a day and that's because I place my floss right next to my toothbrush. Simple, but effective! After brushing my teeth, I then go to town on them with my dental floss and also use teepees for those hard-to-reach gaps between molars. Since doing this, my oral health has improved greatly.

No Caffeine or Food After a Set Time

Sleep.org advises avoiding caffeine, nicotine and eating four to six hours bedtime.

Try the 'Night Before List'

Chris Brogan has some some great advice for How to Get More Done, but what really interested me was his 'night before' list I read about here.

Tomorrow, I’m going to ____________________.
To be ready, I need to ___________________.
I will remember my ______________.
The random thoughts that just filled my head are ______________.
Also remember to _______________.

General Good Habits

Get a Blackboard

Blackboard Weekly Planner
Our blackboard weekly planner, to track exercise and plan meals

The one thing Ned and I well when it comes to routines is plan out our weekly meals, working out when we're both in and who should own each meal. In terms of accountability, I also add my proposed exercise plans and then he can always call me up on them if I don't follow through.

What I love about tracking the week ahead on a blackboard is I have a constant visual reminder about my plans.

For Your Career

I have picked up some great tips from working at Google. One of them is 'snippets'. Although I don't necessarily fill this in every single week, it's essentially a page that you update weekly with your list of tasks. This has multiple benefits; 1) colleagues across the globe can keep track of your projects, 2) when it comes to performance review or building a case for promotion, you can just print your snippets out and highlight the key achievements. This has helped me in my last two promo cycles, as very often once a project is done it's forgotten about.

Update Your CV Every 6 Months
I found this great tip at MyDomaine. The reason why this is invaluable is that if you're stuck in the same job for multiple jobs, you may have lost the specifics of a key project, or forgotten a key metric that really sums up your responsibilities. If you keep the CV as a living document, you're better suited to apply for any role that comes up at short notice.

Helpful Links

  1. The 24-Minute Morning Routine That Will Make You an Entrepreneurial Rock Star
  2. Program Your Day to Defeat Distractions and Stick to Your Daily Routine
  3. 6 Morning Rituals to JumpStart Your Day
  4. How to Develop a Routine That Works - And Stick To It
  5. 8 Step Ayurvedic Morning Ritual
  6. This nighttime routine will help you be more productive in the morning
  7. Establishing Morning and Evening Routines