The best morning routine for a productive day

If you have been doing the same things every morning for years and are happy with it because it totally empowers you and puts you in a positive and optimistic frame of mind every time, then you probably don’t need a new or updated morning routine. However, if you could do with some extra energy, then you may find it in establishing a morning routine because routines automate elements of daily life, and as such they help conserve energy allowing it to be dedicated towards achieving goals during the day


So be honest with yourself when you answer these questions. Are there times where your morning routine elevates your stress levels? Do you find that you are always rushing around in the mornings and seem to be running late most of the time? Are you happy when you walk out of the door to tackle your new day, or do you let out a sigh of relief when you finally sit yourself down at your desk ready to work or perhaps you let out a sigh of relief when you stop working for the day?


If you answered 'No' to any or all of the questions above, then you are ready to revise your morning routine. Morning routines are like the ‘on’ button to your day. How you start the day influences your thoughts, feelings and behaviours which impacts how the rest of your day progresses. If you want to start your day well and be productive for the whole day, you do need a morning routine that supports you and, sets you up for success each day.


What a supportive morning routine looks like

Much has been written on the importance of a supportive morning routine. Successful people recognize and embrace their mornings using it to focus on themselves and their intentions for the day so that they use their time productively towards achieving their goals.


According to Hal Elrod, New Your Time bestselling author of The Miracle Morning, the secret to a supportive morning routine is to combine 6 actions each morning which he calls S.A.V.E.R.S.

 S = Silence

 A = Affirmations

 V = Visualization

 E = Exercise

 R = Reading

 S = Scribe


Now, if you looked at the 6 actions and thought, 'I don't have time for all of them' then it is a sure sign you need to start making time. These actions are an investment in your day and your progress. If you invest in these actions daily, your productivity and available time will increase. Look through what each action is, you may find you are already doing some of them!  

  • Silence is starting each day in intentional silence with mindful breathing and appreciating the moment
  • Affirmations are meaningful phrases to you that reinforce positive self-talk
  • Visualizations are imagining your activities for the day going well
  • Exercise can be as gentle as some stretches or a vigorous workout. The key is getting the body moving.
  • Reading to improve your knowledge and skills, so you can learn from it
  • Scribe is writing in your journal for a quick 5 minutes or longer.


How different would your day be if this was your morning routine?


I'd like to build on these 6 steps by confirming you still need to get 8hrs of sleep, wake at the same time each day and expose yourself to sunlight as soon as you wake up. Often new clients come to see me because they have started following these 6 steps however in setting up their new routine they have started shortening their sleep window. If you're not getting enough sleep these actions will be of little benefit for you. However if you are sleeping and breathing well the benefits of this morning routine are manifold. It prepares you to start your day present, with a positive mindset and an improved sense of self-confidence. It also reminds you of your goals for the day and the exercise kickstarts alertness. As with all routines it preserves energy for when you really need it. 


How to create a morning routine

 1.               Decide what needs changing or upgrading

Making the decision to change your morning routine is the first step as it also gives you a clue about what you would like to achieve with your revised routine. With that in mind, here’s how you can go about implementing a new routine.


2.               Plan

New routines don't just happen by accident. They are created by design. Creating a plan will increase the chances of you successfully implementing a morning routine that better supports you. Think of your plan like a roadmap. Include your wake-up time, the final task and all the steps along the way. Remember to note down potential obstacles and how you will overcome them.


Some people create a vision board of their planning. For those who are visual, this is a great way to see what your goal looks like and when you put it somewhere where you will see it regularly, it can reinforce the daily goal you want to achieve and the longer term one.


3.               Focus

You need to be committed to your revised morning routine. If you are not committed to it, then the chances of you adopting it will be slim. It is important to believe that you will be able to implement your morning routine and that you are able to see yourself doing it. Perhaps you need to enlist the help of others to hold you accountable. 


Write down a positive statement that affirms you have created your new morning routine.


For example, if you want to have a morning routine of waking early then you could write, 'I wake at 5.30 am every day refreshed and ready to start my day. I use my extra time to run for 20 minutes and to eat a healthy breakfast. I spend 30 minutes reading a motivational book because I know that it helps me improve my knowledge and it will inspire me. Before I start working, I allow some time to plan my day and make sure that I know which tasks are important for helping me to achieve my goal.'


4.               Know Yourself

Self-knowledge is crucial to creating new routines, as well as eliminating old ones.


You need to understand your strengths and weaknesses. It is important to know where you might trip up, and how you can navigate those risks. By being aware of what might derail your morning routine you can take action and lessen the likelihood of it happening.


5.               Be flexible

When you have been performing the same morning routine for many years, it is not always going to be easy to make changes to a new empowering morning routine. Partly because of you and the likely obstacles you might put up but also others who are used to the old routine. They may also have something to gain and to lose from your revised morning routine.


Recognize that you may need to make adjustments as you start to implement your new routine. And some days it will work better than others. Learn from it and make the necessary adjustments.


You may well find yourself wanting to give up on your revised morning routine, and when you do, remind yourself of the benefits of a more empowering morning routine.


To help you get started here's a Morning routine printable to use so you can start plotting out your revised morning routine. 

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