This is a second post around creating the best morning routines. It can't be overstated how important having a set of automatic habits occur each day is. This period sets you up for success or for failure. Don't leave it until New Years resolution time to start tweaking your morning habits for the better.
1. Having an Early Start
For a lot of people the early part of the day can be the most productive. Creativity can be high as is energy, especially after exercise. Not only does getting up early* give you more time in the day to spend quality time on the things that you value, it can provide a dopamine boost as you tick off your most important tasks completed.
As we all know, as the rest of the day wears on it can become more reactionary, more stressful, and less productive.
* Results Room doesn't suggest you sacrifice quality sleep time in favour of getting up early - rather get to bed at a regular hour by 10pm. This will allow for much needed sleep as well as an early start.
2. Setting Priorities
There are arguments for and against these lists. Certainly an unwieldy ever growing 'to do' list is not the way to go. The most successful people set one key 'to do' each day, that is a priority for them. This most important thing will always be the thing that if you complete it, it will cause the biggest positive change in your life. Once this is complete other smaller 'to do's' can fill the rest of the day as needed.
This one thing should always be done first thing (after these other habits), before opening emails, attending meetings, or getting caught up in other tasks.
3. Positive Visualisation/Being Grateful
The ability to enjoy the journey and not only the outcome is important, especially as the journey is usually 99% of the lifetime spent working towards a goal.
Being grateful on a daily basis can most easily be done each morning in a journal (you can also list your main priority in here as well to keep things simple). The successful person should remind themselves "what am I be grateful for today?"
This simple task helps nurture positive thoughts, and makes visualising what is going to happen that day, and how you'll feel, far more powerful.
4. Exercise Regularly
Get it done and out of the way. If President's, Prime Minister's, and CEO's have time, so do you. Physical mastery is directly linked to success in other areas of life. After all without good health how successful can a person really be?
A common misconception is that this will take away time from other important things. This is so so wrong!! 45 minutes spent doing a brief circuit (that includes shower time) can easily lead to:
- increased productivity during the remaining work time.
- increased productivity outside of work eg. more time available to cook dinner while watching TV less
- better parental examples through role-modelling behaviour.
- the health spiral - regular exercise leads to better eating = better health, which leads to more exercise, improving food further = even better health, etc. etc.
Make the early part of the day the time getting the blood flowing, endorphin's released, and see your creativity and work output soar throughout your working day.
5. Eat Breakfast
The most important time of the day to eat is after your workout, so get a nutritious breakfast in as soon as you're done. A mix of protein and carbohydrate is perfect and will set you up for the day. Just make sure you keep these meals full of real food and you'll avoid any unwanted processed sugars. The best way to have breakfast is to eat with someone else, this will help you slow down your eating so that you can also learn to enjoy the social aspect of eating (see connecting below).
6. Connect with Spouse/Family
At some stage in the morning share some time with loved ones. This could be breakfast, or just a chat over coffee. Or if you want to include family or friends in your accountability, you could share your ideas around steps 2 and 3. Letting others know what you're prioritising for the day, and then having that person to check in with at the end, can vastly increase adherence and success.
If you're willing to go to that next level with them sharing what you're grateful for can give everyone's day a boost - as often the thing you're grateful for will have something to do with them - and this can be nice to share.
Start today. Add just one thing from this list that you don't currently do, and start doing it tomorrow. Not next month or next week, but right now. And start living a more personally successful life, however you measure that :)