We have all adjusted well to certain morning routines that we religiously follow. For most busy business people and entrepreneurs a typical morning routine goes something like this:
- Get out of bed
- Brush/shave/take a shower
- Get dressed
- Head to the office
- On the way, grab a coffee/breakfast sandwich to-go
In many instances, we’ve been following these routines for many years, so when someone suggests making even the slightest of change to this well-rehearsed schedule, it makes us uncomfortable.
What if someone told you that there were a few activities that you could add to your morning routine that would make your day more productive; would you be willing to consider change? Well, that’s exactly what this article is about. Here are 5 activities that you should consider adding to your morning routine.
Meditate (even for just 2 minutes)
Most small business owners have stress-filled, packed calendars throughout the week. When you jump from one business call to another, and hop from one meeting to the next, it’s hard to take time off to unwind during the day.
As part of your morning routine, include a brief moment of meditation as soon as you get out of bed. Some people equate meditation to being “religious”. While that may be the case for some, it doesn’t always have to be! Meditation, when done correctly, simply helps your body to relax and de-stress in preparation for more stressful situations that lie waiting for you at the office.
It’s amazing what 5 minutes of deep contemplation can do for the rest of your day. Deep breathing pumps the brain with a fresh supply of oxygen, prepping you with all the mental alertness needed for the battles ahead.
Brew your own Coffee
Instead of rushing out the door each morning, why not put everything on hold and brew yourself a cup of coffee before starting your day? It isn’t that difficult or time consuming to do either – 5 minutes tops!
Use an espresso machine to brew yourself the perfect cup of your favourite java – you don’t have to spend thousands either, just $500 can get you something top of the line. It’s an act that, while you are performing, will allow you time to sit back and plan the rest of your day.
And if you are that eager to start the day off, simply set your espresso machine to delayed start the night before, timing the device so you literally wake up and smell the coffee! Then, you can either sit back and sip your coffee at leisure or simply pour it into a thermal mug to go, enjoying your home-made brew on your drive to the office.
Plan your day
If you relax and enjoy your home-made cup of coffee, then take time – 15 minutes at least – to mentally (or using your laptop, tablet or smartphone) map out the rest of your day. Doing this will give you a jump start to the day when you hit the office, allowing you to immediately get productive once you get behind your desk.
Most small business owners will have a slew of negotiations and mediations to deal with at the office. If you are a morning person, make it a point to schedule tough meetings and difficult sessions earlier on in the day. The meditation and caffeine in your system will give you the alertness you need to deal with such situations effectively.
As a busy entrepreneur, it is often very hard to find the time to sit comfortably and block dedicated time slots to catch up on news and views of the times. However, if you want to stay ahead of the game, that’s exactly what you need to do.
If you are great at multi-tasking, then turn on your favorite radio or TV channel and tune into the stations of interest to you – be it business, the weather, world news, sports or anything else. In the 15 minutes that it takes you to self-organize, you’ll get caught up on the headlines of the day that could shape the rest of your day.
Alternately, tune your car radio to the channel of your choice and catch up on all the relevant headlines and news that’s important to your industry/business. Or, simply switch to your favorite music channel and enjoy your commute.
This routine not only helps you get caught up on information of importance to you ahead of the day, but it is also a great way to deal with the stress of morning rush-hour traffic.
Like you, those around you too are constantly stressed and feel pressured by their day. So why not make someone’s day start off with a smile? This is the simplest of all morning routines, but one that can have the most impact – not only on your own day but also on that of those who support you!
All you need to do is say a kind word to someone you know – whether it’s the owner of the newspaper stand, the attendant at the drive-by diner where you get your bagel, your assistant, or someone in the office next to yours.
The act of appreciation has a domino effect. When the people in your organization feel appreciated, they will pass on that feeling to clients, suppliers and business associates of the company.
The net result: A few minutes of kindness added to your morning routine can snowball into years of productive relationships for your business!
Mixing It Up
Many of us tire of morning routines and often give them up even if they are beneficial for us. That’s why it helps to add some variety into your “routine”. For instance, when you brew that cup of espresso, why not have several different flavours at your disposal – say one for each day of the week?
Even the morning commute can be spiced up a bit by switching to different types of content-providing stations on your drive: Monday Sports; Tuesday Business; Wednesday World News etc.
By adding variety to your routine, you’ll not only ensure that your overall routine stays intact, but you’ll also look forward to the slight variations of the routine each morning. This will ensure that you stay faithful to your morning routines for a long time to come!