Want to have more kickass days? Days where you slay your workload with little effort and meet problems with zen-like insight? Of course! If you are anything like me, you’ve tried (and will try) just about anything to increase your productivity and boost your success. That’s why you committed yourself to do a morning routine.
Inspired by your entrepreneurial superheroes and mentors, you penned an elaborate routine into your schedule. If Tony Robbins, Tim Ferriss, and Darren Hardy do them- they have to be good! Jim Kwik, a prominent entrepreneur and a thought leader on brain performance, not only practices morning routines, but promotes them. He says, “If you win the morning, you win the day.”
Without question, a solid morning practice can 10X your productivity. This boost is a natural byproduct of the clarity and focus you get from your morning routine stimulates. Obtaining these benefits requires two elements:
- Building the perfect collection of activities that will jumpstart your day.
- Doing these exercises daily, which is not an easy task for an overworked and overextended entrepreneur.
There is a good chance that you are not seeing the benefits of your morning routine. Or worse, you don’t have one anymore.
Here are the top eight reasons your attempt to have a morning routine is not working, and a few practical suggestions on how to fix them:
1. You plagiarized
You wouldn’t dare steal, borrow, or repost the words of another and incorporate them on your blog and marketing material as your own words. Well, this is what you are doing when you use someone’s full blow-by-blow morning ritual without editing it or adding your flavor. When it comes to creating a morning routine, you CAN’T follow the same one as your entrepreneurial crush.
An authentic morning routine can’t be copied and pasted. Your morning pep session must work within your daily routine and blend with your emotional disposition. It has to motivate you. What drives you is unique.
Identify your specific morning needs. What energy do you want flowing into your day? What gets you fired up? Maybe meditation makes you too relaxed and takes off your creative edge. Equally, a cold plunge in the pool (which is what Mr. Tony Robbins does daily) may make you mad. Whatever you do, make it your own. Don’t take someone else’s prescribed medicine. What works for them could kill you.
It takes discipline, aka, mental energy, to practice your morning routine with dedication. If you start your morning with stress, worries, and split energy, it won’t be effective. You have to include an exercise in your morning system that can massacre these burdens.
In the book, “Thinking, Fast and Slow”, Nobel prize-winning economist Daniel Kahneman calls this condition, “the lazy controller.” Kahneman suggests that “maintaining a coherent train of thought requires discipline.” Likewise, maintaining a cohesive morning routine requires discipline and dedicated energy.
“My future starts when I wake up every morning.” – Miles Davis
3. You do it because you think you should
Doing something out of peer-pressure, or following the crowd is akin to going out on a date with someone you find repulsive because your 12-year-old sister thinks it’s a good idea. There are a lot of methods, techniques, and strategies you can use to achieve what you desire. To make sure you are on the right track, ask yourself these questions:
- Is it right for me?
- Is this the best way for me to achieve my desired outcome?
- Is there a more natural, direct path I can take that will give me the same or better results?
4. Neglecting Your Night Routine
There is so much hype about the morning routine that you may forget to close the loop of your day with an organized nighttime routine. Think about if you go to bed with a bunch of issues on your mind. How do you think your sleep is going to be? And if your sleep suffers, how easy do you think it will be to wake up with the energy you need to get the most out of your morning routine?
- Night routines will help you:
- Review the productivity of your day
- Release the details of the day
- Prepare for a rejuvenating night of sleep
- Pre-pave the next day
Most importantly, a nightly ritual will prep you for your sacred morning routine.
5. It’s Boring
Set it and forget it is not the model here. You are not baking a roast or investing in your 401K. Your morning routine works better when it is fun and engaging. Shake it out. Make sure it is not stagnant. Make small changes like drinking an exotic tea mixture instead of your standard morning coffee. Your morning rituals should adjust to your needs.
6. You don’t budget it into your schedule
You are busy! All entrepreneurs are. If you don’t place this in your schedule, it is not going to happen with consistency. Add it to your calendar, and compress the time you commit to doing it. Instead of doing 30 minutes, do 15. Building a 5-min daily routine is better than a 30-min inconsistent one.
7. Having an all or nothing attitude
If your business made $1,000, but your goal was to generate $10,000, would you give the $1,000 away? No, not if you are a smart entrepreneur. You would take the thousand dollars and invest it into reaching your $10,000 goal. You want to take the same approach with your morning routine. Five minutes is better than no minutes.
Sometimes the only thing holding you back from your 2-hour morning routine is that you only have 30 minutes. So, do 30 minutes. Do 15-mins. Do something. Honor your practice. Just like in your business, you may have to make adjustments and invest until you get the results you want.
“Morning is an important time of day, because how you spend your morning can often tell you what kind of day you are going to have.” – Daniel Handler
8. Punishing yourself if you miss it
If you spend the rest of your day beating yourself up for missing your morning routine, it’s counterproductive. That is counter-productive to the spirit of your morning sessions. Find a way to fill in the gap if another obligation preempts your morning routine. Make it up as early in the day as you can. Yes, it can be made up, schedule it for another part of the day.
Here is another benefit of having a night routine. It can become your scheduled second chance if you miss your morning routine. Knowing you have this failsafe takes the pressure off, and alleviates any self-loathing that would have clouded your day. Adjust and then get back in the saddle. You’ve tried your hand at morning routines. You’ve experienced some success, so you know it is worth it.
How you focus your morning energy can turbo-charge or suck the life out of the rest of your day. Reap the rewards of consciously setting the stage for your daily success. If you make these small adjustments, your success is guaranteed.