Getting off on the right foot can be the key to launching a productive day. Even if you struggle with unusually hectic mornings, change is possible. Use these seven tips to create an unbeatable morning routine.
Decide What You Want to Accomplish
Chances are, you’re reading this article BECAUSE you want your mornings to be better. So, start by asking yourself what exactly you want to accomplish. Better health? A chance for reflection? Less stress? More time with your family? Greater productivity? Then, use this specific goal to design a meaningful routine.
Keep Your Expectations Realistic
In the beginning, you may need to keep your enthusiasm in check. After all, waking up at 3 a.m. to work for two hours, take a morning run, and fix a gourmet breakfast for your family isn’t realistic. Identify a reasonable amount of activities to fill a reasonable amount of time. Clarifying your goal, in Step #1, will help you focus on what is most important.
Establish a Schedule
Once you know what you want to do and how you want to do it, set a schedule. For example, if you’ve decided to improve your health, you could exercise for 20 minutes and spend 10 minutes eating a healthy breakfast. Clearly defining both activities and timeframes will keep you on track.
Make Your Routine a Habit
Forcing yourself to do something drains your willpower, whereas habits are second nature. When you get to the point where you wake up and automatically begin your morning routine, you won’t even think about it anymore. If you’re not sure you have the stamina to develop a habit, try taking The Bruce Lee 21-Day Challenge.
You wake up intending to tackle your morning routine, but first, you glance at your phone. The next thing you know, you’ve spent forty minutes responding to last night’s text messages. Make a deal with yourself to avoid these types of distractions. This includes household chores, TV and, of course, your phone.
Set Yourself Up for Success the Night Before
A late bedtime, unfinished work, or a hectic environment will all add to your list of unnecessary distractions. Put yourself in a position to succeed by getting to bed on time, putting away unfinished work, and finding a quiet time and place where you can complete your morning routine.
Don’t Hit the Snooze Button
Best-selling author Matthew Kelley says when you hit snooze, “You just lost the first battle of the day.” For your morning routine to work, you must wake up on time. If you can’t resist the temptation of rolling over and hitting the snooze button, place your alarm clock across the room so this isn’t an option.
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