Ever had a day where you had a ton of energy, felt totally in control, reaching a peak state of mind and body to tackle major goals, projects, and ideas? If it’s been awhile since you’ve had a day like this, and most of your days are reactive, when you’re feeling frustrated and worn out, then it’s time to look at your routine. Getting a consistent routine is one of the most powerful things you can do to make the most of each day.
How do you start each day? Having a routine that sets you up for success is key to have a productive day and not a reactive day. I’ll share my current routine below. This can change depending on what I have going on, but will give you an idea of what I do. I hope it will give you some ideas for your own routine.
Step One – Plan Ahead
It starts the night before. Every day is different for me so this is a must. If you have a routine schedule of clients you may be able to skip this step because most of your days will have the same schedule. I always look at my calendar for the following day to see what’s on the agenda and plan out my entire day. I think through anything I’ll need to tackle first thing in the morning (my most productive time), along with prep for any clients, meetings on my schedule, and any writing I need to get done. I’ll figure out what time I need to be up by and whether I should set an alarm. If it’s an extra busy day I’ll be getting up extra early to get a head start and get my workout done early in the morning. Wake up calls at 4AM are not uncommon for me (and neither are 9PM bedtimes).
I block everything out on my calendar using Google Calendar, including when my workout will be, when and where my meals will be, and what I’ll have. Do I need to throw some chicken breasts on the George Foreman grill tonight or hard boil some eggs? Lay out my workout clothes or pack my bag for the day?
Getting on a regular sleep schedule is key. I go to bed by 10PM most nights and wake up at 5AM most mornings. If you aren’t currently going to bed at the same time each night and waking up at the same time each morning this will make a huge difference for you to be able to bring more of yourself to each day.
Step Two – Big Picture Time
I am a morning person and naturally wake up pretty early, usually by 5AM. I know most people hate mornings…I love the morning! I also love coffee. This is my favorite time of day, drinking my coffee in a quiet house with time to myself, before the hustle and bustle of the day begins. I take time every morning to revisit my goals, do some big picture thinking and either write in a journal, plan my action steps (I love spreadsheets!), and/or read while I sip on my coffee and my mind wakes up to tackle my priorities. I have a few favorite coffee mugs that I love to drink out of to start my day along with something small to eat such as a hardboiled egg or yoghurt.
This big picture time happens no matter what. If I have to be somewhere at 5AM, I’ll get up at 3AM to have this quiet time. This time gets me refocused and centered for the day ahead.
Step Three – Tackle Priorities First
Because I planned out my day the night before, I’ve already thought about and planted in my subconscious anything I need to work on first thing in the morning as my first priority. This has me waking up first thing in the morning with tons of ideas that I’m excited to get started on. This usually includes writing, tackling numbers, solving problems, business ideas, marketing plans, preparation for a meeting or creating a presentation, along with logging into out forum for our mastermind coaching members to help them with any challenges they may need help with.
Step Four – Move Your Bod
By 6 or 7AM I have been working for about 90 minutes solid and am ready to get moving, and so is my dog. To be honest, I am usually on a roll by then, typing away, and she gets restless and comes over and literally shuts down my computer, letting me know it’s time for a walk. Okay, time for a walk! If I have to get my workout done in the morning I know I need to be at the gym by about 5:30 or 6 to be home by 7 to take her for her walk. During my walk I usually have some professional development downloaded to my iPhone to listen to. I am a huge Jim Rohn fan or, lately, I have been listening to Darren Hardy, publisher of SUCCESS MAGAZINE. Or sometimes I’ll just listen to music and let my mind wander. We usually walk for an hour, getting my blood pumping and my mind going again.
If I don’t hit the gym in the morning I will workout in the afternoon, which is what I have been doing lately (depends on my day). A 2PM workout time gives me another boost of energy mid-day and is especially helpful if I have more writing or visionary projects to get done in the afternoon post workout. Exercise is so powerful to thinking clearly and having a productive day. By having a walk in the morning and a workout in the afternoon I get a double dose of endorphins. Make sure moving is part of your routine!
Step Five – Fuel Your Bod
Breakfast is my favorite meal. At around 7-8AM I’ll cook myself a breakfast to sit down and enjoy, nourishing my body for the day. I’ll take my multi & fish oil and usually finish my first bottle of water. I’ll also get my ice chest packed for the day with the rest of my meals.
And it’s go time!
My first appointment, meeting, phone call or start to a seminar, mastermind or coaching day is by 9AM. Shower, get dressed, make-up, hair, and GO!