For the majority of my child and adult life I never considered myself a “morning person.” I was a night owl. During my architecture school career I worked late through the night and slept in the mornings. When I started working at an Architecture firm, I conformed to getting up at 7am… but I didn’t enjoy it. I would get up as late as possible, skip breakfast, rush to work, and then feel like I was trying to catch up the rest of the day.
This type of routine will take its toll on your physical and mental well-being and majorly impact your productivity.
Now, I work from home for myself on various businesses, and I happily wake up around 5:30 am each day. Even on weekends, I’m usually up by 7 am. It could be that I’m enjoying the work I’m doing so much and am accountable to only myself; however, I think it has more to do with the fact that I’ve learned so much about how creating good habits and a morning routine are critical for lifetime success. A morning routine sets the tone for the whole day, and if you do each day right, you’ll do life right.
One of my goals for the beginning of this year was to get into a good morning routine in order to set myself up for the day. It started whenever I read The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod in January. I knew that not having a good morning routine and feeling overwhelmed and disorganized were connected.
I needed to work smarter, not harder, and the first step was to create good habits.
The first thing I needed to do was quit the belief that I was a “night owl.”
Over the past several months I have been working on “habit stacking” to craft myself a good morning routine that works for me. Habit Stacking is a way to build a new habit into your life by stacking it on top of something you’re currently doing. For example, before I brush my teeth in the morning (current habit) I will meditate (new habit) for 3 minutes. I’ve discovered the personal ritual I have set up for myself has helped put me in the right mindset and offset any morning procrastination.
Another great reason to create a morning ritual it is to avoid mental fatigue.
We only have a certain amount of energy and willpower when we wake up each morning, and it slowly gets drained away with decisions. This is especially true if you’re making hundreds of small decisions in the morning that mean nothing yet will affect how you make decisions for the remainder of the day. Try to have the first hour of your day vary as little as possible with a routine.