"One key to success is to have lunch at the time of the day most other people have breakfast."
- Robert Brault
Benjamin Franklin, Arnold Schwarzennergger, Ernest Hemingway, Jocko Willinck, Margaret Thatcher, Richard Branson.....What do they have in common? Aside from being uber successful, inspirational leaders in their fields, they also start their hours earlier than most.
I want you to step back for a moment and compare two styles of waking in the morning;
8:15 / Alarm goes off. Hit snooze for 15 minutes.
8:30 / Jump up in a rush, get changed, grab your briefcase and you are on your way.
8:45 / Pump in a coffee to shake yourself out of your slumber.
9:05 / Arrive to work at feeling rushed and unproductive without one, that's right, not one genuine win to start the day. More on wins later.
5:30 / Alarm goes off. You sit up from your bed, have a big drink of water and stick your headphone in to enjoy 15 minutes of guided mediation.
5:45 / Feeling positively zen about life, you rise from your bed and walk to the shower, where you jump in and enjoy your regular shower before hitting the cold tap and bracing the frigidity of a few minutes of cold to really wake up the system.
6:00 / Before anything else you sit down and take in 30 minutes of reading. Be it the morning news, be it your favourite novel, be it a comic book. Anything.
6:30 / Take out your gratitutude journal and write down three things in your current life that you are grateful for.
6:40 / Swing that gratitude into the kitchen and begin preparing your favourite breakfast with a green smoothie or your favourite healthy juice.
6:50 / Enjoy your breakfast.
7:20 / Walk or ride to the gym, swimming pool, beach or anywhere you can to get your morning workout in.
8:30 / Shower again if need be and head to work.
8:45 / Arrive at work having dominated your morning and made it your own.
I am sure it's pretty easy to notice the difference in your approach to the simple act of getting out of bed and starting your day.
Now back to the "wins".
Let's be brutally honest. Life can be hard. It's very rare that you can control what happens to you on a day to day basis, and for a lot of us out there the day to day monotony of life can be hard to handle. This is where a morning routine can come in and give you ownership of your day.
Say for example, you go to work and everything falls apart - your boss comes down on you, your car breaks down on the way, someone tell you to 'kick rocks nerd' or any number of any negative things happen through the course of the day, then if you have taken approach to waking #1 as outlined above then life has beaten you. Life has won the day. You have been defeated. Better luck next time. Better luck tomorrow.
But...say for example you start your day with approach #2, then you have won. And you have still won in a big way. Let's do a rough scorecard for the day.
* Negative occurence in your day (run in with boss, car breaks down etc) > -5
Overall score = Negative 5
* Meditation > +2
* Cold shower > +1
* Reading > +2
* Gratitude journaling > +1
* Good breakfast > +2
* Gym > +4
* Negative occurence in your day (run in with boss, car breaks down etc) > Score -5
Overall score = Positive 7
Obviously all the numbers I have allocated to the scores are arbitrary but you can clearly see no matter how you score it (unless of course you cheat just so you win and beat me, which would be poor sportsmanship indeed), waking up early and having a postive start to the day ALWAYS wins.
Another thing is it's really the only part of your day that you are normally totally in control of. When everyone else sleeps you can truly do what you want. Sure you can use this time for evil, but that is not what we are trying to do here. We are trying to impart good on the world.
My challenge to you is to choose 5 things from this list below and do them tomorrow morning before 9AM. Here is the list:
* Sex > +4
* Meditation > +2
* Cold shower > +1
* Do work on the most important task for the day > +4
* Walk your dog > +1
* Walk your dog at the beach/park > +3
* Walk someone else's dog > +5
* Gratitude journal > +1
* Read for 30 minutes > +2
* Have a good breakfast > +2
* Gym > +4
* Go for a ride/run > +4
* Get creative (write, draw, paint) > +3
* Play with your dog > +4
* Play with your kids > +5
* Stay switched off device-wise 'til 9AM > +3
* Journal > +3
* Make your bed > +1
* Do yoga > +5
Taking away any negative score, my daily ritual was an overall score of +12. Comment your score. See if you can beat me.
Enjoy tommorow. Enjoy your morning. Win your day. Win all your days.
Bill, otherwise known as ‘Doc’ is the founding father of AdventureFit Travel. An avid traveller/backpacker Doc spends more time with a backpack on his back than your average primary school student. Across his travels Doc encountered many adventures. From swimming with sharks, patting lions, riding elephants and running with bulls. He has visited 5 continents on his quest for adventure and plans to visit more with his AdventureFit family.
Not only is Doc passionate about lust for adventure but he is also an avid fitness enthusiast. Working in the CrossFit industry has shown him... Read more.