If you want to start your day feeling powerful and excited, some specific habits will consistently get you there. None of them are difficult to establish if you’re fed up with the way things are and ready for some real change in your life.
The things you do the first thing in the morning greatly affect how productive, successful, and cheerful you are throughout the day. If you want to get yourself into a powerful and motivated state of mind every day, follow the protocol described below. Rather than starting them all at once, I recommend adding 1-3 of them to your daily routine per month.
Get Up Early
There are many advantages to getting an early start on the day. It’s quiet. There are no interruptions. There are no crowds. And it’s the coolest part of the day during hot weather.
The time that you get up is the first act that sets the pace and your attitude for the rest of the day. If you get up late, you’re behind schedule for the rest of the day. It also lowers your mood knowing you didn’t get up as early as you wanted.
I get up at 3:40 am daily. I know that sounds crazy. But it is quite normal for me now and I love it for the reasons I mentioned above. Establishing this schedule evolved over a couple of years. I started by getting up at 5:00 am, then 4:00 am, and finally 3:40 am.
I was inspired to get up at 3:40 am when I learned that several famous, wealthy people get up at that hour. I also wanted to extend that blissful period of uninterrupted quietness. This is the period, before breakfast and after I’ve exercised and taken a shower, that I do my best writing.
Brush Your Teeth Thoroughly
Your teeth, gums, especially your tongue has accumulated various undesirable material including bacteria during the night. Your lungs and other organs work to remove this material from your body via your mouth as you sleep. It’s imperative that you get this junk out of your mouth right away. You don’t want to swallow it or flush it down with a drink of water, juice, or coffee.
Start by scraping your tongue with a tongue cleaner and washing your mouth out with warm water. Then brush your teeth and flush out any remaining material between your teeth and below the gum line with an oral water irrigator. I recommend using the Philips SoniCare Rechargeable Toothbrush (I have the Essence model) and the WaterPik Ultra Water Flosser. The Ultra is far superior to the Classic model.
For more information, read my article entitled, “Bad Breath: How to Eliminate & Prevent It.”
Drink Water First
You have gone without the element that makes up 70% of your body for 6-8 hours or more. So it’s important to drink a full glass of filtered water right away each morning. If you’re going to do some exercising, be sure to drink more water during that activity as well.
I said first because you should drink water “before” you drink coffee or anything else. It’s the best thing for your body and the most needed at the start of the day.
Shun Artificial Stimulates
Coffee and energy drinks only provide an artificial, temporary, and inefficient stimulation. They are inefficient because the energy they create is uneven and often disruptive to optimal brain function.
Have you ever drank too much caffeine from any source and found that your concentration and thinking had become difficult? You get a 45-minute rush, in the beginning, followed by a rapid decrease in energy, and finally a crash. Wouldn’t you rather have a strong even energy flow throughout the day without the highs and lows?
As you can tell, I’m not a proponent of coffee and especially energy drinks. I gave up coffee years ago. I now rely on this protocol to get energized each day.
Count Your Blessings
Carefully reviewing all the things in your life for which you are grateful is the best way to get yourself in a sustained upbeat mood. It also gets your vibe in alignment with what you want to attract into your life.
If you do the opposite and think about all the things that are wrong in your life, you’ll likely attract more of the same. You’ll also put yourself into a sour state of mind.
I start counting as soon as I get out of bed. When I need a kick in the butt, I contrast things that I am grateful for with an image of someone who is less fortunate. For example, this morning I was being grateful for my home and comparing it to images of homeless people I saw in a documentary. I don’t stay on these sad images too long though. I don’t want to draw myself toward that outcome. So I quickly return to the inspiring stuff.
No matter how small they are, count your blessings! As the number grows, so will your gratefulness and uplifting feelings.
Review Your Goals & Wisdom Nuggets
Reviewing your goals recalibrates your settings for hitting your target. If you don’t review them, you’ll likely lose focus and waste time doing things that don’t help you reach goals.
Wisdom nuggets, as I like to call them, are inspiring quotes from famous people. Since most people don’t have much time in the morning, reviewing your favorite quotes is a quick way to get motivated and on track. I assembled an extensive list of inspirational quotes here that you may find useful.
During the beginning of my third year of college, I was really struggling to keep up. To stay motivated, I created a collage of my favorite quotes, hung it on the wall, and read each one every day. I graduated with honors. 🙂 I have continued to use quotes for the same purpose ever since.
Do Aerobic Exercise
Doing aerobic exercise first thing in the morning gets all the systems in your body flowing, it raises your mood through the release of endorphins in your brain, and it sets a positive tone for the day. You’ll find that all the systems in your body operate more efficiently after you’ve exercised. The greatest reward (endorphins) is in how great you feel. This feeling can last for hours.
During the spring and summer, I swim and during the fall and winter, I power walk. I chose power walking and swimming for a number of reasons. They don’t require any special equipment. They don’t wear down your joints. They are invigorating due to the difference in seasonal temperatures. And they can be done throughout your life.
Meditation can be that sweet peaceful space in your day when all is right with the world.
Meditation teaches your mind and body to relax, focus, harmonize, and function at optimal levels. The effects are cumulative. The more times you do it the more you benefit. There are many meditation techniques, but I am most familiar with Transcendental Meditation (TM).
I learned TM during my first year of college. I believe it helped me graduate with honors. The process of learning how to do it was by far one of the most beautiful experiences of my life. It helped immensely to calm me down and gain more clarity and focus.
TM is done twice a day for 15-20 minutes before breakfast and before dinner. Many famous people practice TM. If you’re interested, search online for a TM center near you.
Drink, Eat Fruit
If you have time to do some work or plan your day before breakfast, drink some freshly made fruit or vegetable juice. I’m talking about the kind you make using a juicing machine. If you don’t have the time to make it or you can’t afford a machine, drinking a “small” glass of unsweetened and low sodium juice will do. In addition, eat some fruit like part of an orange, papaya, apple, or melon. Also, have more water handy.
The fruit, and especially the juice, will quickly replenish needed nutrients after sleeping and exercising. This will give you a blast of energy and enhance the natural high you get from exercising.
I usually have 2-2 ½ hours between meditating and preparing breakfast. With the addition of the juice and fruit, this period is the most productive of my entire day.
Eat a Super Healthy Breakfast
If you eat a super healthy breakfast, it will fuel your body, mind, and spirit and make you feel energized and powerful. If you eat a sugary or high fat meaty breakfast, not only is it horrible for your health but you’ll also feel lethargic afterward. This happens because you’ll get a sugar rush followed by a sugar crash and it takes the body a tremendous amount of energy to digest dead animal fresh.
My breakfast is totally plant-based now. Like getting up early, this change happened over a couple of years. However, the transition from being a 90% vegetarian to becoming 100% vegan happened almost overnight. I decided to become a vegan after watching several documentaries about the impact of food choices on our physical and mental health. I listed them under “Documentaries” on the Self Improvement Media page.
I describe my breakfast and include a recipe for preparing it in this article entitled, “Vegan Superfood Breakfast Bowl.”
Many people place little importance on how they start their day. They drag themselves out of bed at the latest time possible, eat an incredibly unhealthy breakfast, rush to work, and then have more coffee and some donuts. These people are easy to recognize. They are overweight, slow-moving, temperamental, and marginally successful.
Those few who recognize the importance of how they start their day are easy to identify as well. They are trim, brimming with energy, high-spirited, and extraordinarily successful. And they are obviously smart.