When you woke up this morning, what did you do?
Did it involve hitting the snooze alarm multiple times? Possibly running to the shower, changing, and heading out the door? Or maybe you even made enough time to grab a granola bar on the way out the door.
If your mornings are defined by any of these situations or consist of any similar iteration then you’re doing it wrong.
I like to think of the morning as a foundation to the start of your day.
If you start your morning in a rush to get going, you’re going to go through the day in a rush. And this my friends is what the majority of America does.
The majority of America sleeps until there is absolutely no more time available for sleep, and then rushes to get to their workplace.
If you can wake up early to get to something that you have to do, like go to work, then you can certainly muster up the gusto to wake up for something you want to do.
Like IMPROVE your life.
If you start the day with personal development, then I can guarantee you that your life will improve dramatically.
This goes back to one of my favorite quotes by Charlie Munger:
“I constantly see people rise in life who are not the smartest, sometimes not even the most diligent, but they are learning machines. They go to bed every night a little wiser than they were when they got up and boy does that help, particularly when you have a long run ahead of you.”
What are you doing to develop yourself, not for the sake of your employer, but for YOU?!
While you’re reading this, you’re probably saying, “but I’m so busy, there’s not enough time in a day.” Then make time! You make time for the things you want to accomplish.
If I told you, that you could accomplish at least 75% of the the goals you set for yourself if you dedicated an hour of your day to personal improvement, would you do it?
I guarantee you would. And that’s exactly what can happen if you dedicate yourself to it.
And when’s the best time to do it.
I recently read a book by “Yo Pal” Hal Elrod (great name to have people remember you) called The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed To Transform Your Life… (Before 8AM).
I typically shy away from books with this overly enthusiastic title, but I saw some good reviews from people I respect so I decided to give it a shot. Besides, nobody has ever gone broke buying books to read.
Although much of the book is simply words to fill pages, there were some great tips I picked up.
The first one is to have a strategy when you wake up. Don’t just fall asleep without a plan on how you’re going to attack your morning.
This is how I go about mine:
- 5:30 AM: Wake Up (I am slowly waking up earlier and earlier till I reach 4:00 AM which is my goal for waking up.)
- Immediately put on workout clothes and drink a glass of water.
- Spend 10 minutes praying. This can be replaced with meditating for some.
- Spend 10-20 minutes reading the bible.
- Spend 10-20 minutes reading a book of my choice, most often non-fiction, or reading Bloomberg Businessweek or WSJ.
- Spend 20-30 minutes walking/running ‘Famous Amos’ (dog) or stretching/breaking a sweat.
- Once all of that is done, I make my breakfast, drink my coffee and then begin getting ready for the upcoming day.
Notice how I don’t even begin thinking about the upcoming day until after I’ve done all the things I WANT to do.
By picking a morning schedule and sticking to it, you are winning the morning. Although it may seem small, these small wins compound themselves over time. This is an idea I recently picked up from the book, The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business.
The second idea I picked up from The Miracle Morning is to spend time in silence. This is talked about by many of the guests on the Tim Ferriss Podcast (my personal favorite) but simply being able to sit in silence in a world that is constantly in motion is a skill few will master.
This small portion of your day simply being content with nothing will radically change your life.
As will starting your morning on your terms.
So, stop being a victim of your situation. Stop allowing the morning to ruin your day. Rebel against the way everybody else is living.
Make the morning a victory, and watch as your days become victories.
Stay Strong, Live Long,