Mornings can be tough, especially when you want to hit that snooze button. Or when your kids wake you up too early. Or when you aren’t happy at your job and have to survive a long day at work. But sometimes a shift in attitude or routine is all you need. Many successful people have morning rituals to help kickstart their productivity. Before you roll your eyes, take a look at how the following entrepreneurs begin their day.
I’d like to preface this article by saying that my intention isn’t for you to tackle all these strategies at once, but to take the ones you like and that suit your morning. I used to believe that all millionaires and billionaires woke up at 4:30 a.m. to meditate, drink green juice, endure military bootcamp, write a book, build a tree house, and then be at the office by nine. Nope, at least not most of them. But they usually do have rituals to start their day productively. Let’s be honest, we get giddy when we get sh*t done. So take a tip or two from their morning page, but don’t think you have to do it all.
I love this quote from Tony Robbins: “When it seems impossible, when it seems like nothing is going to work, you’re usually just a few millimeters away from making it happen.” Here’s him discussing the change of a few millimetres in a golf example that applies to our daily lives.
Since we talked about Tony Robbins, let’s start with his morning ritual.
Author of Money: Master the Game. Self-improvement titan who has advised names such as Serena Williams, Bill Clinton, Oprah, and Kanye West.
Quote: “I’m like an athlete; I must train my nervous system.”
Morning Ritual: He visualizes his day. Tony works on mastering his mind so that it doesn’t believe in small actions, but leans towards superpower actions. So visualize yourself doing what you want to accomplish, but go bigger than what you think is possible.
Tony has been in the self-improvement game for over two decades, so he will go the extra mile to keep himself energized. He trains his nervous system to take action on the things that scare him. His technique: he’ll jump into a Jacuzzi to warm up his muscles and then jump into freezing cold water. So if you have a hot tub and a shower in your bedroom, you too could wake up like Tony Robbins.
My Two Cents: To modify Tony’s fanciness, you can take a hot shower and then switch the temperature to ice cold. But to really feel fancy, use a shower head that makes you think you are at the spa. Check out this Kohler shower head, it plays your music while you shower.
Editor-in-chief of Vogue (since 1988).
Quote: “Create your own style. Let it be unique for yourself and yet identifiable for others.”
Morning Ritual: She wakes up at 6:45 a.m. to play an hour of tennis. Then she gets her hair done and is in the office by 9 a.m.
My Two Cents: It’s good to exercise before your workday and it’s much more fun to do it with your friends. Now, if you are like me and don’t have friends to play sports with, do not fear: X-box works nearly as well. Kinect will be your morning bestie to play tennis or any other sport. More importantly, get Deca Sports Freedom to play any sports including tennis, volleyball, and boxing.
If fake tennis doesn’t intrigue you and you don’t have time to go to the gym, bring it home. Every morning, you can hit the treadmill (Exerputic TF100) for at least ten minutes to jump start your day.
Diane Von Furstenberg
Founder, designer, and CEO of Diane von Furstenberg (DVF).
Quote: “We all have a wonder woman inside us.”
Morning Ritual: “I send one e-mail that doesn’t benefit me at all,” she said at a Fast Company conference. This can range from making a connection for a young artist or designer to sending someone a compliment.
My Two Cents: She’s all about getting karma points. Giving back is the designer’s way of staying happy and whole. Remember the last time you helped someone and how great it made you feel? Probably pretty fantastic, which is a brilliant way to start your day. You can never regret spreading a extra love in your day and the world.
Serial entrepreneur, investor in Facebook, Twitter, Evernote, and Uber. The best-selling author of The 4 Hour Work Week, The 4 Hour Body, and The 4 Hour Chef.
Morning Ritual: He drinks a hot cup of turmeric, ginger, pu-erh tea, and green tea. He also opens up his journal to start a practice called Morning Pages, founded by Julia Cameron. The exercise is to put down all those thoughts that are in your monkey mind so they don’t distract you during your day.
My Two Cents: Many successful people recommend Morning Pages. Personally, I’m getting more familiar with the concept that your thoughts become reality. And then when you actually notice what you are thinking, you’ll become scared how your mind conjures up negative stories. Or is it just me? Regardless, I’m excited to get my hands on this Moleskine notebook to start journaling.
Producer, director, actor, and talk show host. (And she’s a billionaire.)
Quote: “Think like a queen. A queen is not afraid to fail. Failure is another stepping stone to greatness.”
Morning Ritual: Whether it’s for one minute or twenty, she takes time to quiet her mind through meditation. Back when she had The Oprah Winfrey Show, her entire staff had meditation breaks. Oprah knew it was a wise investment for building a very successful network.
My Two Cents: Oprah has partnered with Deepak Chopra on a free twenty-one-day meditation practice kit and it’s also available for purchase. I’ve done it before, and it’s great. As for your meditation space, some like to do it on their bed, while others prefer a yoga mat or a cozy blanket.
What’s your morning ritual like? Share with us in the comments below.