05 Sep

Establishing a Productive Morning Routine

Self-avowed night owls and snoozers don’t always want to believe it but your morning routine makes a surprising difference in how the rest of your day goes. Everyone knows the sudden cold panic of realizing you’ve overslept. But a lot of people try to downplay how similar waiting until the last moment to get out of bed is.

Some people don’t feel like they’re made for the morning. I’m one of them. I’ve always been a night owl and felt like the later I got, the more I thrived. When I tried to establish a morning routine to make myself more productive, it was a struggle. I made it work with a committed attitude and consistency and I really felt the benefits. But then my son was born. He’s been a great blessing in so many ways but sleep is not one of them.

I stumbled and fell out of the routine I worked so hard to establish. In these last couple of weeks, however, I’ve started to bounce back. I’ve renewed my efforts and I’m starting to experience those productivity and efficiency benefits all over again.

Creating a morning routine gets you beyond the panicked feeling of always being slightly behind. Using the time outside of your workday wisely is a great strategy towards pursuing success. Wake up with a clear mind and dedicate yourself to your goals for the day.

You have to be willing to take the time for yourself. There are benefits for your career but also the people you love. One of the upsides of having a morning routine is that it acts as a huge mood booster. Instead of hitting work straight away, being able to take time for yourself gets your blood pumping and brings your focus to the things that matter to you.

Depending on your goals, you can take a very short amount of time or develop a longer morning routine. Productivity expert Hal Elrod thinks you can boost your day in just six minutes. His book, The Miracle Morning, was the kick-starter for the morning routine movement. For the truly time-starved, he recommends his “SAVERS” system, where you spend just one minute doing each of the following:

  • Silence
  • Affirmations
  • Visualization
  • Exercise
  • Reading
  • Scribing

Each of these activities is a value-add to your overall morning. They ground you and prepare for you the day ahead in different ways. Once you’ve adjusted to getting up earlier, you may find you want to devote more time to the one you really enjoy or that seems to help you most. Whatever gets you into the morning, consistency is the key to seeing those benefits.

Life always tries to get in the way of our best-laid plans. Setting up a morning routine isn’t easy, especially if you’re used to rushing out the door at the last minute. But success is a choice. You have to wake up in the morning and choose productivity. You must choose to improve. And every day you choose to do that, you’re choosing to succeed.