Updated: Nov 29, 2021
It's no secret that the most successful among us have (or had) morning routines: Benjamin Franklin, Arianna Huffington, Marie Kondo, Barak Obama, Franz Kafka, Immanuel Kant, Winston Churchill, Steve Jobs, Michelle Gass.
So what's their secret recipe? What is the best morning routine to set us up for success?
Well, here's what NOT to do:
True story, this was my morning routine. Guess how long it lasted? 2 DAYS! Why? First, it was unrealistic -- 5 minutes to dry my hair??? Really, LL. Second, I found myself glued to the clock; every second was accounted for, and instead of feeling ready for the day, I felt rushed and overwhelmed (especially if Pierre didn't poop in the allotted 10 minutes we had for our walk). Third, it was not sustainable. I was trying to do too much. Way too much.
In creating a morning routine, follow these helpful steps:
1. Write down all of the morning necessities and a realistic duration for each (shower, make breakfast, pack lunch for the kids, walk the dog, etc.).
2. Then, add up the minutes for the necessities -- the sum total of how long it takes to get ready.
3. Then, subtract this sum total from the time you need to leave the house in order to get to work or drop the kids off at school. We'll call this number the TN (time for the necessities). For example, if your sum total is 70 minutes and you need to leave by 7:15am, your TN is 6:05am.
4. But here's the thing -- when we think of a morning routine to set us up for success, we're not thinking about the necessities. We're thinking about things like exercise, meditation, reading, journaling, visualization, or affirmations. If you're just starting a morning routine, here's my suggestion: Subtract 10-15min. from the TN. This is your wake-up time (in our example above, this is 5:50am). Then, include one new thing to do for these 10-15min., one activity from the list above that will help you jump-start your day.
If we start small with just one new activity (exercise, meditation, reading, journaling, visualization, or affirmations), we are more likely to succeed in creating a morning routine. We can always add more activities later, but the important goal here is to establish a routine, a habit.
We all love our sleep. I admit, when I'm in a deep sleep immersed in a delightful dream, I'll hit that schnooze button! But if we start small, waking up just 10-15min. earlier than usual, suddenly, a morning routine becomes doable. We CAN wake-up 10min earlier!
Let's do this!
And if you're all in and feel ready to try the ULTIMATE morning routine, read here.