It seems to me that how I start my day off…especially the first 1-2 hours, often dictates how the rest of my day goes, or to what degree I will navigate the ups and downs of it successfully. And I’m not alone in thinking this. It’s not surprising that many of the podcasts I listen to often ask their guests what their morning routines or rituals look like (i.e. Tim Ferriss, Rich Roll, Lewis Howes, etc.). They do this because they know that a lot of research both statistical and anecdotal point to the fact that how we start our morning plays a big part in how are days go.
As a life long night owl this has been a really hard reality for me to not only wrap my head around, but actually come around to practicing it. But if a 12am-2am’er such as myself can go to bed by 11pm so he can start his day off right the next morning..then maybe that tells you all you need to know about how important our morning routines are.
I have by no means mastered my morning, and I really doubt I ever will. Because life is life, and sometimes it gets complicated and busy. But I can tell you this. I have worked really hard over the last several years to experiment with and implement different disciplines and practices into my life to see not only how they would affect my morning routine, but to really test out if becoming a morning person was all that important.
And after much trial and error I’ve come up with 9 disciplines and practices that I use pretty regularly in my morning routine. The routine is not perfect, but more often than not when I’m hitting on all cylinders, these 9 practices are evident in my daily morning routine (even as I write this post for the podcast I did have 8 of the 9 disciplines present in my morning routine — Headspace didn’t happen today — that tends to be the one I trade off with the journal). And even when I’m not running on all cylinders, you can find me practicing most of these disciplines on a daily basis.
The good news is that after much experimentation and practice with one discipline at a time, I was slowly able to add another one, create a habit, till eventually most of my morning routine is less of a laborious conscious effort, and one that has developed into a nice flow and rhythm in my day.
In this episode I will explore my 9 practices and disciplines that embody my first few hours of my day…my morning routine:
- Body Movement (running, lifting weights, yoga, stretching, cycling, swimming, etc.)
- Listening to podcasts that inspire growth and challenge beliefs.
- Avoid the consumption of technology that dictates my day rather than keeps me from creating (email, news feeds, social media feeds, etc.) for the first 1-4 hours of my day.
- Make the bed.
- Make a green smoothie
- Connect with my wife and kids.
- Do the Five-Minute Journal
- Use the Headspace app
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Links and Resources Mentioned in this Episode
Lewis Howes’ podcast The School of Greatness
On Being Pocast with Krista Tippett
5 Morning Rituals That Help Me Win the Day (Tim Ferriss in this podcast episode talks about his morning routine and the importance of making the bed)
What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast (Success Magazine)
The Morning Routines of the Most Successful People (Fast Company Magazine)
My Green Smoothie Recipe (This is the typical green smoothie I make each morning, though I will change things up. You have to adjust to your own liking, but this is my typical measurements for two people. By the way, I’m known to not really measure things, but this is what I typically aim for. If there is a brand we typically, and consistently use, I mention it here. And I use a Vitamix which creates a great consistency: Coconut Almond Milk (2 cups, Califia), Plant Based Vanilla Protein Powder (1.5 scoops, Garden of Life Raw Meal), Maca Powder (1 tbsp, Navitas Naturals Organic Maca Gelatinized Powder), Chia Seeds (1 tbsp, Nutiva Organic Black Chia Seeds), Hemp Hearts (1tbsp, Manitoba Harvest Hemp Hearts Raw Shelled Hemp Seeds), Kale, Spinach, Dates (3 pitted dates), Goji Berries (1/2 cup of berries), 1 tsp of Spirulina, 1 Banana, 1-2 cups of Ice.
Here is the video on shot on my morning routine about 7 months ago. In it I talk about The Five-Minute Journal and Headspace