Successful and productive people know that how they spend their mornings has a tremendous effect on the rest of the day.
You might be wondering:
“What do these people actually do during their mornings that gives them the edge?”
The answer is rather simple:
They have carefully-designed intentional morning routines that ensures that every day is a success.
Here’s how to turn your bland morning ritual into a productive powerhouse:
The quality of your day is directly proportionate to the quality of your mornings.
You experience this (even if you are not fully aware of it) every single day.
Some days you wake up fully charged, have an exciting morning and you are pumped up and motivated the entire day because of the great start. Other days, you wake up moody and not fully rested and you cannot get yourself to do much the whole day, other than take regular coffee trips.
Seems normal, right? Some days are good, some days not so much.
Your productivity and success are so important that you cannot leave them to chance. You need to schedule them.
Although it is to be expected not all days to be the same in terms of energy and motivation, you cannot “hope” that you are going to have a good day. You need to take charge. You need to take matters in your own hands.
You need a productive morning routine.
One that will set you up for success. Every. Single. Morning.
The good news is that you already have a morning ritual (even if you don’t call it that). You probably wake up around the same time, do the same activities, leave for work around the same hour. People are creatures of habit and mornings are great examples of that.
The question is: does your morning routine serve you?
Is it intentional? Is it designed to maximize your energy, motivation and productivity or are you just going with the flow because you’ve been doing it for such a long time?
Let’s roll up the sleeves, answer those questions and create your very own productive morning routine:
The 3 Ps Of A Productive Morning Routine
Let’s start with the basic ingredients that make up a productive morning routine.
I call them “The 3 Ps”.
If you make sure that they are all present in your mornings and combine them like I’m going to show you below, they are going to take your productivity to the next level.
1) Physiology – How Is Your Energy Doing?
The first P stands for “Physiology”, or simply put, how physically charged are you?
Do you walk away from your mornings feeling fully energized to tackle the long to-do list that you have or are you going to be hooked to the coffee drip just to stay awake?
Low or no energy = lack of productivity.
Energy is the most basic building block of productivity and success. If it is Tuesday at 10:00 AM and you can barely lift your head from your desk because you are already exhausted, no fancy app, time management trick or lifehack can help you.
You need energy.
Sounds basic (and it is), but this is usually the segment that can use the biggest improvement for most people.
Here’s how to ensure that you start your day pumped up and fully awake:
- Drink 8 oz of water immediately upon waking up – as soon as rub those eyes open and get up, go straight into the kitchen, pour yourself a big glass of water and finish it off. According to recent studies, doing this will increase your energy by up to 24% for the next 90 minutes.
- Do a light form of exercise for 20 – 30 minutes – now that you are fully awake from the water, it is time for some physical activity to get the blood and oxygen flowing. A light jog (or even walk), yoga, stretching, biking or even going up and down the stairs would do the job.
- Have a wholesome breakfast – the first meal of the day is the most important one so make it count. Have a breakfast that is full of nutrients and that will provide you with energy for the next few hours. My favorite is organic oatmeal with walnuts. It is quick to prepare and consume and the whole grains take a while to be fully digested so it keeps me energized for a significant period of time.
Water, exercise and a good meal are the building blocks of your energy in the morning. Use them and watch your productivity explode.
2) Psychology – How Motivated Are You?
The second P stands for “Psychology” or how is your mood in the morning?
A big chunk of your productivity and success depends on your mental state. If you are motivated, happy and excited, you tend to be more productive, jump over obstacles much easier and procrastination is rarely a problem. The opposite is also true, low motivation can drag your creativity, imagination and productivity down quite fast.
A productive morning routine needs to make sure that you walk away from your mornings in the right set of mind – bold enthusiasm.
Here’s how to do it:
- Write down 3 things you are grateful for – take 5 minutes at the start of your day and jot down on a piece of paper 3 things that you are grateful for. It could be your health, your family, your new sexy haircut, the fact it is Sunday and you don’t have to go to work, the sun outside… you know your stuff best. Starting your day concentrating on the positive in your life will instantly put you in a great mood.
- Write a “thank you” note – who in your social circle deserves some appreciation? Your best friend who has been there for you for last 15 years? The barista at the coffee shop that greets you with a big smile every morning? Find one person that deserves some gratitude and send them a “thank you” note. Just imagine the smile on their face when they get it! It will make you feel fantastic and will most likely do the same for them as well. A win-win!
Fully energized. Check.
Fully motivated, happy and excited. Check.
3) Productivity – Put That Great Momentum To Practical Use
The last P from the productive morning routine trifecta stands for “Productivity”.
What’s the point of building all that energy and motivation momentum if you don’t what to do with them?
Unless you put them to productive use, it is all going to waste.
Here’s what to do next:
- Make a plan – as soon as you make it to the office (or you start work at home), take 10 minutes and plan out your entire day using the 1-Page Planner. Having a clear up-font idea of what you want to achieve every day will save you from wasting your time bouncing from the random demands of everyone around you.
- Do your MMT – look at your planner, pick out the one (1) task that will give you the highest results, the Most Meaningful Task (MMT) and get it done. Before you check your email, before you start returning phone calls, before you talk to any of your colleagues. Get that task done! This will ensure that your day is a success no matter what happens next.
By now you are fully energized, excited and pumped up, you have a plan for what you have to do today and you just did your most important task for the day. Your day is already an almost guaranteed success and you are just starting out!
What Is Your Routine?
These are the building blocks of a productive morning routine.
Now, let’s make them part of yours!
Everyone’s routine is different. Maybe you have kids that you need to drive to school, or a sick parent to take care of, or a pet, or… etc. You need to create the perfect routine that works for YOU.
1) Examine Your Current Routine
For the next few days, as you go through your different actions in the morning, write them down on a piece of paper.
Once you have your list, take some time to go through it and evaluate your morning routine.
Do all the actions serve a purpose? Are they covering the 3 Ps? Can you eliminate some of them or substitute them with something better? How can you incorporate the building blocks we discussed earlier into your current morning routine?
As you answer these questions you are going to start crafting a great morning routine for yourself. One that covers the 3 Ps and one that works for YOU.
2) Slow, But Steady Progress
Now that you know how a productive morning routine looks like in your case, it is it time to make it a reality – slowly.
You’ve been doing your current ritual for years probably so it will take some time to change it.
Slow and steady progress will ensure lasting change.
Start by adding just one action to your current way of doing things. Do it for a few days, even a week, and get used to it. Once it becomes part of your routine, make the next change. Do it for a few days. Get accustomed to it. Add or change something else. Keep going in the same manner until you hit the perfect productive morning routine you crafted for yourself in step #1.
Over To You Now
The quality of your day is directly related to the quality of your mornings.
The quality of your mornings depend on the quality of your morning routine.
Once you understand, internalize and start using this simple relation to your advantage, your productivity and how much you get done will never be the same.
Create a productive morning routine that works for YOU. Your success depends on it!
Source: High Performance Lifestyle
Question: how does your morning routine look like? Share in the comment section below: