Why your morning routine is so important to the success of the rest of your day
We’ve all heard of the phrase, “start as you mean to go on”, and this can most certainly be applied to your morning routine if you want to have a successful, productive and fulfilling day. We’ve all had those mornings, which haven’t started out great, and kind of set the tone for the rest of the day. You end up wanting to go to bed as soon as possible and start afresh the next day. On the flipside, hopefully we’ve all had those mornings where things go brilliantly. You’ve got up feeling energized, motivated and you’ve got loads of stuff done even before leaving the house, which in turn makes you feel like you can take on anything that the day has to throw at you. But why leave whether you have a good or bad day to chance? Why not create your own personal success morning routine so every day is a good one? As a Career & Personal Development Coach, morning routine is a big topic that comes up quite a bit with my clients. It’s really important to find what works for you & your life, but here are some of things to think about if you’re looking to shake yours up.
Yes, it’s really obvious, but how many of us get good sleep? It’s so key to having a productive, positive day. Yes, there can be limitations as to why we can’t have a good night’s sleep, like having a baby or toddler waking up in the night, but overall, most of us can get a good night’s sleep if we practice good sleep habits. Things like going to bed at a reasonable time so we get 7-8 hours, turning off TV or not looking at our phones at least an hour before bed. Alcohol is sleep’s arch nemesis, as is stress. So, it goes without saying, limit alcohol and if you’re feeling the weight of the world on your shoulders, write all your thoughts on paper before hitting the hay. Mind dumping is a great activity to relieve your brain from anxieties that aren’t helpful to you right before bed.
2. Don’t look at emails or the news first thing in the morning
If you’re doing this, you’re flooding your brain with negativity and stress from the outset (which clearly isn’t helpful). Ease yourself into the day instead of reaching for the phone first thing when you waken up. Try and hold off for at least 1 hour after wakening.
3. Make your bed
This might sound like an odd one, but if you make your bed as soon as you get up, your brain has already registered that you’ve achieved one small goal. There’s a real sense of achievement when you leave your bedroom and the bed is made and you can see the result visually. This motivates your brain to keep up the momentum as it wants to get that dopamine hit from the feeling of achievement. So essentially, that small tasks leads on to you completing and hitting another small goal, and then again and again. Momentum has been developed.
4. Spend time reflecting on what 3 goals you want to achieve from the day ahead
Not a lot of us do this. It’s because we’re running on autopilot and carrying out the habits and behaviours we usually do. This way of being makes us reactive in the day to the events that we face then and there, rather than having a plan of action for the day ahead, which will give us more focus and clarity and leave us less stressed. So take 5-10 minutes out of your morning routine to write down what are the top 3 goals you want to achieve that day. That way you’ll go to bed that night with a huge sense of achievement with them having been completed. Ask yourself, what you need to let go off that day in order for them to be achieved? That could mean repriortising your diary and letting go off meetings that aren’t that important, letting go off people pleasing so you get the stuff done that YOU want to, and then ask yourself what do you need to add into your day in order to achieve these goals? Examples could be to add in time blocking, add in asking for help, add in ‘me time’.
5. Mindset work
If you go into the day with the correct mindset, you’re going to handle the day better than if you go into it thinking negatively. Limiting beliefs can be the biggest thing holding us back from a successful, productive day. So while you’re brushing your teeth, say over in your head, “today I will be (insert positive belief in here)”. This could be confident, speak up more in meetings, productive, priortise my needs. This way, you’ve set the intention.
I challenge you to shake up your morning routine and see what a difference it can make. Let me know if it made a difference to your day.