Every single day someone tells us how to change a morning ritual to be successful, productive, calm and happy. Fast search on the internet gives the thousands of articles designed for the entrepreneurs, parents, writers or even bodybuilders.
Yet, do you really know why formation of the morning routine is the best place to start improving your life?
Let me explain it more thoroughly than 99% of the available articles do. (BTW, how often does someone offer you an invitation to the club of 1% of the most insightful people in the world? Read the rest of this article and amaze your friends with your wisdom 😉
The three main reasons why morning ritual is the best place to start changing your life are:
· The significance and importance of starting the day right
· The nature of the willpower’s circadian rhythm
· Human’s natural predispositions to ritualize the morning activities
Almost every single article related to the morning habits touches this point.
By starting day right, you maximize effective time of positive influence of the ritual on your day. Therefore, setting the tone for the new day is extremely important. The best strategy to do so is to form good habits enclosed in a morning routine.
Second reason why morning is the best time to start changing your life is the existence of the body clock. Most organisms on this planet, including you, run in cycles. The daily 24-hour cycle is called the circadian rhythm and is responsible for a balance between eating, sleeping and various other physiological processes.
The circadian rhythm of human willpower is simple. The amount of available willpower is highest right after sleep. During the day, willpower is used and it reaches minimum level in evening. Therefore, people often break resolutions at the end of the day.
How often do you hear that someone ate healthy for the entire day only to consume tons of chocolate in the evening? This is the willpower’s circadian rhythm in action.
Thus, morning is the best time to start the change that requires willpower.
Habits work in a specific way described well by a loop-type model. The basic habit loop looks like this:
cue -> routine -> reward
Usually, the above model explains what’s going on behind the scene of the habit. However, it must be upgraded in order to describe morning rituals as people have natural predisposition to act on autopilot at the beginning of the day.
In morning, the cue is present as in the general habit loop. In fact, it is what wakes you up: alarm, your inner clock, or anything else.
After the cue, the first routine of the day occurs. It might be a glass of water, trip to toilet, kissing your spouse, etc. Since the end of this activity, the basic loop applies no longer.
Instead, in place of a reward after the first habit, there is another routine, and the next one… until the last habit of the morning ritual.
In morning, we use one routine as a cue for the next one and can easily create long chains without any visible rewards. In consequence, the morning habit loop looks like this:
cue -> routine 1 -> routine 2 -> … -> last routine -> reward
This, combined with the available willpower, has huge effect. It is ridiculously easy to put a habit into a morning ritual. You don’t have to worry about the cue (as you could use any habit in your current chain) or about the specific immediate reward (as it is not crucial in the morning habit loop).
Unfortunately, it is as easy to set up the bad routines as to install the good ones. Therefore, many people have some bad habits within their morning rituals. However, with just a little amount of reflection and mindfulness, everyone can create a personalized morning ritual.
How could you do that? Now, when you now the answers to WHY questions, it’s easy. Pick the habit you need and want, and just form it. Then rinse and repeat until you are happy with the outcome.
This article is the expanded fragment of my book: “HABIT LAUNCH: 10-Step Formula to Tailor Routines You Love to Perform and Skyrocket Your Well-being”. For checking it out, click here. You might also look at my author site at moniuszko.net