12/27/2013 11:26 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Make Over Your Mornings For a More Productive Year


How you start your day has a great impact on your attitude and achievements all day long. Successful people develop morning routines that are designed to help them reach their daily goals and achieve constant success. It's so important to have time to yourself in the early hours. Your mornings can be a sacred time to calm your mind, conjure inspiring thoughts and prepare yourself for a successful day.

It is your moment to ponder and project your daily outcome. If you want to tap into your inner genius, cultivate your creativity and gain more control of your day, start getting up earlier and use the following three action steps to power up in the a.m.

Zen Habits author Leo Babauta tried several morning routines before settling into one he loved most. His reasoning for creating a morning habit was to consistently make progress towards his goals. "The reason I like having a morning routine is that not only does it instill a sense of purpose, peace and ritual to my day, but it ensures that I'm getting certain things done every morning, namely, my goals," wrote Babauta on his blog.

Start with morning meditation.
Insight comes early; if you sit quietly in the morning and meditate and then listen within, you will discover brilliant ideas are ready to burst out of you. Find your very own sweet spot where you can get quiet, relax and think big thoughts. Allow your mind to expand and see yourself productive, profitable and progressing toward your goals. To zero in and align your thoughts with your most pressing activities, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What are my desires, goals and dreams?
  • What do I want to focus on accomplishing right now?

After meditating for about 15 minutes, quiet your mind and just sit quietly. In my time of meditation I usually ask a question then sit and wait for the answer. Sometimes it's just one word that comes to mind. I then write that word down and take action right away.

Jessica Simpson and Eric Johnson spend time in the morning free form writing for an hour. In an interview with The New York Times, Simpson shared how Johnson encourages her to write in the morning to relieve mental and emotional blocks.

Create a daily plan.
Writing is a key component to daily accomplishment. This process will cause you to think about your day in advance and create a plan for what you want to achieve. Even if it's only two things, write it down and place the list somewhere prominent so you can see it and be reminded of what you want to do. This will also stay focused to accomplish your most important tasks.

Jump start your body with exercise.
Morning exercise invigorates your body. It also helps you feel better about your health. It's good to get your exercise early before the rest of the other distractions begin to impede on your time. It's much easier to start with exercise than try to peel away from work mid day to run to the gym, or take on that treadmill at the end of the day, when all of your energy is spent. When you first arise, take time to stretch at minimum. If you can, do jumping jacks, take a jog or a brisk walk around your neighborhood.

Work on a project.
You may find your creatively flows freely in the morning. Block off 15 minutes to work on your book, research a project or review a project before getting to work. The undistracted time alone will help you think purposefully and clearly about what you are focusing on.

We all have 24 hours in a day; the early hours are available to all of us. When you get up and start your day by doing one or all of these actions, you will begin to accomplish more. Some people successfully manage their side businesses, plan vacations, organize and clean their home office and much more during the morning hours.

Makeover your mornings and make over your life.

How do you want to spend your mornings? Share in the comments below how you use your early hours or would like to use your early hours to get a head in your business and life.