It’s not how you end the day, but how you start it. True, the original saying is actually the complete opposite of this one. Nonetheless, people should be paying more attention to how they start their day as it can have a tremendous impact on the quality and quantity of work that they produce. Starting the day off with jelly donuts or watching an episode of your latest Netflix conquest can give you a poor start. Here are five habits to incorporate the next morning:
Don’t Reach For Your Phone
It’s become a habit, especially in today’s generation, to reach for their smartphone as soon as they wake up. This seemingly harmless habit actually starts you off the opposite path of a productive and successful day. It invites you to consume unimportant content, which becomes the center of your attention for the rest of the morning. Whether it’s gossip from a friend or a new show added to your queue, reaching for your phone can be a detrimental habit and should be avoided. Replace it with a more calming and less addictive habit, such as watering the plants or petting your dog.
List Your To-Dos
Knowing what tasks lie ahead allows you to divide your time and energy accordingly. On the other hand, not having a schedule or structure will leave you multitasking and/or prioritizing tasks that are easy yet unimportant in the long run. Always set a to-do list based on tasks of the highest importance down to tasks that are optional and non-urgent. As a general rule of thumb, try to do the harder tasks first as they are usually more important and are time-sensitive. For instance, if you have laundry and project deadlines on your plate, the latter should supersede the former.
Engage in Physical Exercise
It’s been proven that early morning exercises yield lower stress, sharpened focus, and a better mood. Exercises, ranging from intense gym workouts to casual jogging, can have a profoundly positive effect on people suffering from depression, anxiety, and other mental issues. When doing physical exercises, it’s important to get the nutrition you need from the food you eat. Unfortunately, in some cases, the diet is not enough. You can take supplements like protein powder to help you build and repair muscle tissue that’s worn out from your morning exercise.
Count Your Money
Having a clear understanding of where your personal finances are relative to where you want them to be in the next five to ten years is key to adapting to your situation and making changes accordingly. Take at least 10 minutes to check on your income and expenses, outstanding debt, savings, assets, and liabilities, etc. Ask yourself critical questions, such as if you should be increasing or decreasing the cap for certain expenses, whether or not you have enough saved up for retirement, and if there are any opportunities for growth that you should be capitalizing on.
Not just any food that you find in your fridge, but a wholesome breakfast that can power you through the day. Sit down with your spouse or family and whip up some eggs and bacon or some oatmeal and fruits. Skipping breakfast to catch the next train or bus can affect your mood and attention span. Rather than being focused on the workload ahead, your mind and attention will constantly be rerouted to your growling stomach. If you find yourself not having enough time to sit down and enjoy breakfast in the morning, prepare the food the night before.
A lot of successful people attribute their success to morning rituals and habits that they’ve developed over time. A well-thought-out morning routine can serve as a signal to your mind and body that the day has already started. Following the five habits above should take you from zero to sixty in no time.