Create The Ideal Morning
Susan presses the snooze button for the third time and rolls back over into her bed.
She doesn't want to get up yet, and the comfort of her bed has her wrapped up in it's powerful grip of slumber.
"Just a few more minutes," she thinks to herself before she dozes off again.
Then, Susan suddenly bolts up in alarm and panic sets in.
She realizes that she's hit the snooze button too many times.
Looking at the clock, Susan sees that she's going to be late if she doesn't hustle double-time!
In a whirlwind, she gets ready for work and rushes out the door.
Fortunately the trip into work goes without a glitch.
She speeds into the office, past her colleagues who are already settled in, and as she reaches her desk she checks the time - 8:15 am on the dot – Phew! She just made it.
But as she plops down into her seat, she feels frazzled, spent and in need of a coffee and breakfast.
As she turns on her computer she thinks to herself, “This is getting ridiculous. I've got to start waking up earlier.”
And with all the energy that she can muster, Susan begins her workday.
Does this sound familiar?
Does this sound like an ideal morning to you?
If you're ready to take back your morning, then keep reading for an easy way to implement a morning routine that will leave you energized and empowered to take on the rest of your day.
Why The First 90 Minutes of Your Morning Is Critical
There's no doubt about it – waking up in the morning to implement a routine is challenging. Especially when you didn't get a good night of sleep the night before.
But waking up a few minutes earlier so you can gradually ease into the day has so many benefits, particularly to your well-being. When you take the time to take care of yourself in the morning, it cascades into the other areas of your life.
How you wake up each day dramatically affects your levels of success.
Focused, productive, successful mornings create a momentum that carries on through the rest of your day. By simply incorporating a morning routine, you can transform any area of your life faster than you ever thought possible.
The research by Steve Key, a professor of molecular and computational biology at the University of Southern California, shows that “[w]hen it comes to doing cognitive work, most adults perform best in the late morning.”
So what can you do during the early morning to prepare for your peak level?
Standardizing the first 90 minutes of your day with a routine will set the stage so you can arrive at your peak level in the best possible mindset.
A Miracle Morning Routine
My favourite morning routine has quickly become The Miracle Morning, by Hal Elrod.
Where the letters represent an activity of The Miracle Morning routine.
Depending on how much time you have in the morning, The Miracle Morning formula can be condensed down to 6 minutes (one minute per activity) or each activity can be extended to fit your schedule.
It's completely up to you how you implement The Miracle Morning into your day. The reward is that whether your morning routine consists of 6 minutes (or more) the quality of your day will be vastly improved.
Here's Hal's Miracle Morning Forumla:
S is for Silence
Meditation, prayer, reflection, deep breathing, gratitude — these are all ways of sitting in silence and achieving a sense of peacefulness to start your day.
A is for Affirmations
Affirmations are basically mantras that you repeat to yourself. They're a tool that helps you change your programming so that negative thoughts and beliefs are transformed into empowering values about yourself and your capabilities.
V is for Visualization
Also known as mental rehearsal, visualization is the practice of creating mental pictures of specific behaviors and outcomes for your life.
E is for Exercise
The mental and physical benefits of exercise are well documented. Whether it's 10 minutes of walking around the block, power yoga, jumping jacks or squats, the point is to move your body and increase your energy levels.
R is for Reading
One of the fastest ways to get where you want to go is to model successful people who have already experienced what you want to achieve. Whether it's personal development or a subject you're passionate about, reading a few pages each morning will do.
S is for Scribe
This is a fun play on writing or journaling. Take the time to put your thoughts and feelings on paper to clear your mind and hone in on what's important to you.
Regardless of how you implement the Life S.A.V.E.R.S formula into your morning, your day (and life) will be aligned with purpose and empowerment. You'll be prepared for the ups and downs of the day because you took the time in the morning to anchor yourself.
But maybe the Life S.A.V.E.R.S. Formula isn't your cup of tea?
The truth is that your morning is yours, and you know what will work best for you and your schedule. The most important thing is to take a few minutes to ground yourself.
Take a look at the following buffet of morning strategies that will help you organize and energize your day...
Simple Morning Strategies That Will Help You Prepare For Your Day
There's no right way to develop a morning routine. There is simply your way.
Here are some other great morning rituals that you can incorporate so that you can make the most out of your day:
Wake Up At Your Right Time
Getting enough sleep and waking up when your body is ready will lead to a more productive day than forcing yourself out of bed hours before you're ready. Take the time to identify how much rest you need each night so that you have enough time in the morning to prepare for your day.
Schedule Your Day
Having a daily schedule helps you focus on what's important.
It's best to make your schedule the day before so that you don't have to think about it in the morning – you can go directly into execution mode. Simply make a list of the tasks you want to accomplish and decide where your priorities lie. Review your goals each morning.
Have a Glass of Cold Water with Lemon
Start your day by drinking a 16 ounce glass of lemon water.
This ritual helps you:
- Wake up faster
- Freshens your breath
- Get large amounts of vitamins
- Reduces the feeling of hunger
- Aids your digestive system
Let The Natural Light In
Natural light helps you get started on the right foot.
It has a number of different advantages including:
- Aids mood and perception
- Enables the performance of tasks
- Controls the body's Circadian system
Complete a 7-Minute Workout
A great way to start your day is to workout. No need to incorporate a long routine if you don't have the time. Just focus on moving your body and raising your energy levels.
Create a “Get Out The Door” Routine
In the evening, compile all the items you’ll need for the next day and put them into a central location. Think of the items that you’ll need for the next day and then spend five minutes putting them together. This ten minute habit will save you a lot of time and frustration in the morning.
Meditate for 5 Minutes
Meditation is about maintaining focus on one thing (such as your breathing or the sounds of the ocean) and blocking out other distractions.
Meditation has been proven to have numerous benefits, including:
- Stress Reduction
- Increasing creativity
- Increasing focus
- Increasing memory
Yoga for 10 Minutes
Stretching and holding your body in a simple posture helps you let go of control with each breath.
Some of the many benefits of Yoga include:
- Helps with memory
- Lowers the risk of heart disease
- Relieves anxiety
- Elongates and tones your muscles
The 5-Minute Journal
The following 3 questions remind you to be grateful, to focus on the most important activities, and to remind yourself of your core values.
3 questions that will help you start your day on the right foot are:
- I am grateful for…
- What I'm going to focus on today is…
- I believe…
Whether you choose one activity or many, the beauty of creating a morning routine is that you can tailor it to whatever makes you feel good about yourself.
Knowing that you took a few extra minutes in the morning for yourself is one of the best ways to empower yourself and fortify your well-being.
Putting It All Together
There’s not a universally right answer to how your start your morning. It's completely up to you to develop a routine that works for you.
If you enter into each day with gratitude for the opportunities that lay ahead, you will transform your day and life into something spectacular.
"To simply wake up every morning a better person than when I went to bed."
~ Sidney Poitier ~
Well said Sidney.
Do you have an ideal morning ritual? Please share your insights and wisdom with others...