Morning Routine Ideas: How to Start Your Day Off Right

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Looking to level up your morning? How does having a regular, predictable morning routine contribute to your success and long-term well-being? What are some morning routine ideas you can draw from?

Starting your day with a regular routine creates energy and focus that carry over into the rest of your day. When you do your routine immediately upon getting up, you face fewer temptations to skip it than you would later in the day—for instance, feeling tired or too pressed for time.

Here are some morning routine ideas to set yourself up for success for the rest of the day. 

The Importance of a Morning Routine

You need discipline, willpower, and determination to reach your goals. Real legends—those whose creative and productive output positively affects the world—understand the importance of focus, practice, sacrifice, education, and patience in their work. They create solitary spaces to connect with their genius and reflect on their work. 

You can do this as well by starting each day committed to harnessing your mental, emotional, and spiritual power through a standardized early morning routine. 

Morning Routine Ideas to Set Yourself up for Success

The best morning routine is the one that you can commit to executing on a daily basis. That’s why you must be realistic and honest with yourself as you design it, keeping in mind your schedule and natural inclinations. For instance, there’s little point in committing to exercise first thing in the morning if you know that you’re not a “morning person,” as you get your energy burst in the late afternoon.

Keep this in mind as you try out the morning routine ideas of successful people we’ve detailed below. Try them for yourself and see which elements you’d like to keep and which ones you’d rather discard to create a morning routine that will set you up for success. 

The Miracle Morning

If you reluctantly drag yourself out of bed every morning, Hal Elrod’s Miracle Morning routine may be just what you need. As he recounts in his book The Miracle Morning, this morning routine idea grew from lessons Elrod learned from two rock-bottom experiences in his life: a devastating car accident and the 2008 financial recession.

This routine became so successful in helping him turn his life around that he began calling it his “Miracle Morning” and sharing it with coaching clients and friends, who also found it transformative.

Life S.A.V.E.R.S.

The Miracle Morning routine consists of six practices, which Elrod named “Life S.A.V.E.R.S.” because they literally saved his life from spiraling out of control during the most difficult periods. 

Silence: Starting your day with silence calms and centers you. There are five ways to practice silence: meditation, prayer, reflection, deep breathing, and gratitude. You can practice just one or combine them. Many people choose meditation, following these steps: close your eyes or look down at the floor, quiet your mind by letting go of intrusive thoughts, focus on breathing, and be present in the moment.

Affirmation: Affirmations are positive, constructive statements that you repeat to yourself as a tool for reprogramming negative thinking to help you change or accomplish something. An effective affirmation is read aloud and states what you want and why, how you’ll change, and what steps you’ll take. 

Visualization: Through visualization, you increase your chances of success by imagining yourself achieving the results you want. Use your senses to see, hear, feel, touch, smell, and taste every aspect of your dream. Then, envision yourself achieving your goals. Also, visualize the person you need to be to achieve them.

Exercise: Aerobic exercise, such as jumping jacks, pushups, and situps get your blood moving and raise your energy level. Alternatively, you could follow along with a yoga video. 

Reading: Reading self-help or inspirational literature gives you the ideas, strategies, and knowledge you need to achieve your goals. Learning from people who have already done what you aspire to do saves you from reinventing the wheel. Reading ten pages a day adds up to 3,650 pages a year or about eighteen self-improvement books.

Scribing: Writing in a journal allows you to record insights, ideas, successes, lessons, and opportunities for development. Try listing what you’re grateful for, your accomplishments, and areas for improvement plus the steps you’ll take to improve. Or just write a synopsis of your day.

The Miracle Morning Process

The Miracle Morning process is something you’ll look forward to doing and it will quickly and seamlessly become part of your life. There are a host of benefits:

  • You’ll wake up feeling energized, with a strategy to take your life to the next level.
  • You’ll feel less stressed.
  • You’ll have clarity and focus, enabling you to solve problems and overcome beliefs that have held you back.
  • You can get in shape, improve your health, and lose weight if you want to.
  • You’ll be more productive and focused on your priorities
  • You’ll worry less and be more grateful.
  • You’ll increase your income and attract wealth.
  • You’ll choose and start living your life’s purpose.
  • You’ll stop settling for less and live out your vision for an extraordinary life.

The Miracle Morning can be customized to fit everyone’s work schedule and lifestyle—for instance, you can spend ten minutes on each practice for a total of an hour or spend as little as a minute on each for a six-minute routine. You can spend less time on some practices and more on others and vary the sequence. Whether you’re a “morning person” or not, you’ll learn to wake up earlier, excited to start your day. Your Miracle Morning experience will become the key to unlocking your potential.

The 5 AM Club Morning Routine

As the name suggests, the 5 AM Club Morning routine is premised on waking up at 5 AM. But why exactly 5 AM? 

According to the creator Robin Sharma, early morning is the most productive part of your day: everyone else is asleep so there is no one, real or imaginary, to interfere or judge you. He calls the time between 5 AM and 6 AM the “Victory Hour” because of how much you can accomplish within the first hour you’re awake. 

The 5 AM Club Principles

There are five tenets of the 5 AM Club mindset:

  • One hour of tranquility leads to a lifetime of achievement.
  • There is no power in excuses. 
  • Without struggle, there will be no glory.
  • Being extraordinary means being different.
  • There is only one direction that leads to greatness—forward. 

The Victory Hour

The Victory Hour is the key premise of the 5 AM Club morning routine. It consists of three twenty-minute periods: exercise from 5 AM to 5:20, planning from 5: 20 to 5:40, and study from 5:40 to 6 AM:

Period 1: Exercise From 5 AM to 5:20 AM

The first thing you need to do after jumping out of bed is to engage in vigorous physical activity. You can go for a jog, do jumping jacks, take an exercise class, or dance. Do whatever activity suits you, but it must make you sweat. When you sweat first thing in the morning and activate all of these benefits, your psychological perspective will improve. You’ll be calm, focused, and more productive. 

Period 2: Reflect From 5:20 AM to 5:40 AM

Once you are done exercising, spend the next twenty minutes to quiet your mind and focus on your breath. When you take the time to reflect in the morning, you start your day calm, stable, and spiritually powerful. From this foundation, you can attract great things to your life and impact others for the better with your positivity. 

Period 3: Grow From 5:40 AM to 6 AM

If you want your life to grow, you must take time to grow your mind. The final 20 minutes should be devoted to enhancing your knowledge of the world and your craft. Deepen your knowledge to increase your aptitude for success. While others are sleeping, you’re taking steps to improve your mind and skills, and those steps will give you a head start each day. 

Tony Robbins’s Morning Routine

Tony Robbins has advice for optimizing anything from your health and fitness to your finances and marriage. He also has advice on how to wake up every morning filled with energy and tackle your day with enthusiasm.

Prime Yourself for Success

The very first thing Tony Robbins does in the morning is something he calls “priming.” The aim of priming, according to Tony, is to get your head right by “putting yourself into a state where your mind and body will respond accordingly.” The priming technique involves three steps: a breathing exercise, a visualization exercise, and setting three goals for the day. You can see how it’s done here.

Morning Power Questions

In addition to using the priming technique, Tony Robbins recommends asking yourself a series of questions each morning, which he calls the “Morning Power Questions.” The aim of asking yourself these questions is to set the tone for your pattern of thinking for the day. For each of the questions, think of two or three answers, elaborate on how it makes you feel, and specify why you feel that way. If you struggle to come up with an answer to any question, add “could” to the question—for example, if you can’t think of anything that makes you happy, try to come up with an answer for “What could make me happy?” 

The Morning Power Questions include: 

  1. What in my life makes me happy? 
  2. What in my life excites me? 
  3. What in my life am I proud of? 
  4. What in my life am I grateful for? 
  5. What in my life do I enjoy most? 
  6. What in my life am I committed to? 
  7. Who do I love? What makes me a loving person? 
  8. Who loves me? 

When you make a habit of asking these questions every morning, they’ll begin to shape your experiences. For example, if you always ask yourself what you’ve learned each day, you’ll start going through your days looking for things you can learn.

Tim Ferriss’s Morning Routine

Tim Ferriss’s morning routine actually starts in the evening. Before going to sleep every night, he puts his phone in airplane mode. According to Tim, if you wake up to a barrage of text messages and notifications, you’ll immediately be short-circuited. To prevent it from happening, you must have a boot-up sequence of your own. In his book Tools of Titans, Ferriss describes his boot-up sequence:

  1. Make your bed.
    • Getting the day ready with a small task encourages you to do another. And no matter how bad your day goes, you can make your bed. This gives you some feeling of control. 
  2. Meditate.
  3. Do 5 to 10 reps of a physical exercise, like pushups or squats.
  4. Make titanium tea, a combination of:
    • Pu-erh aged black tea
    • Dragon well green tea
    • Turmeric and ginger shavings
    • 1-2 tablespoons coconut oil
  5. Write in his 5-minute journal
    • Answer the below questions with 3 answers each
    • I am grateful for…
    • What would make today great?
    • Daily affirmations. I am…         

Darren Hardy’s Morning Routine

Darren Hardy, a motivational speaker and a mentor to CEOs and high-performance achievers, is another firm believer in the power of morning routines. In his book The Compound Effect, Hardy writes that morning is the best time for routines. Your day is likely unpredictable; it’s hard to control all the events coming at you, so it’s hard to implement routines. But how your day starts and ends is in your control, and setting routines for these times can help you implement healthy, positive behaviors and gain momentum.

Hardy’s personal morning routine starts at 5 AM when his alarm goes off and he hits Snooze. This morning routine keeps Hardy grounded, disciplined and performing at a high level.

  • Gratitude. First, he uses the 8-minute snooze time to think of things he’s grateful for.  
  • Sending love. Second, he sends love to someone, imagining the good things he hopes for them. He calls this a “mental love letter.”
  • Day’s top goal. Third, he thinks about his top goal and lists three things he can do on this day to move that goal forward. 
  • Coffee and stretching: When up, he puts the coffee on and does a series of stretches to fight stiffness.
  • Read: Next, he takes his coffee, sets a 30-minute timer, and reads something positive.
  • Focused Work: When the timer goes off, he works for an hour on his most important project. This work is focused and undistracted.
  • MVPs: Next he has what he calls a “calibration appointment,” where for 15 minutes he goes over his long-term goals and weekly and monthly goals, and sets his top priorities (“Most Valuable Priorities”) for the day. He asks himself what three things he could do that day to propel him toward his big goals.
  • Email: He then opens his email, and delegates tasks to his team, and gets to work.

Final Words

Morning is a very special time of the day. Depending on how you start it, it can be the time of potential and new beginnings, or it can be the time spent in a rush and in a bad mood. You’ll dramatically increase the chances of it being the former if you have a consistent morning routine that sets a positive tone for the rest of your day.

Don’t just repeat someone else’s morning routine, no matter how successful they are. To be effective in the long run, your morning routine must be designed with your preferences and inclinations in mind. If you don’t like meditating or exercising in the morning, don’t do it just because successful people are doing it. Take the above list as just a collection of morning routine ideas, not rules. 

The way you start your day is important, but it’s just one piece of the puzzle when it comes to achieving your goals. If you enjoyed reading this post about morning routine ideas, you might like to check out the books of the people mentioned to learn about their overall success philosophy and how mornings fit into the grand scheme of things. 

The Miracle Morning

The Miracle Morning presents best-selling author and speaker Hal Elrod’s antidote to living the kind of mediocre life that most people accept as normal. Elrod argues that everyone is capable of achieving their dreams in every area of life, including relationships, finances, career, health, spirituality, and happiness. The answer is committing yourself to personal development by getting up early and following a simple daily routine of silence, affirmation, visualization, exercise, reading, and writing, which can empower anyone to transform any area of life in a surprisingly short time.

The 5 AM Club

You have a unique talent you were born to master, but knowing how to reach your creative and professional goals is not always easy. In The 5 AM Club, Robin Sharma explains how to discover your inner genius and maximize your abilities by adopting an early morning routine that activates your creative and productive potential. Your daily “Victory Hour” will enable you to narrow down your goals and reach them like a master. With this powerful tool you can become influential in your field and create a lasting impact on the world.

The Compound Effect

The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy offers simple tips on achieving success and living the life of your dreams. The idea is similar to compound interest in finance – small, everyday decisions add up to huge returns over time.

While the concept is simple, that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Hardy presents six strategies for successfully and carefully directing your choices to shape your destiny in a positive direction and offers a plan of action for improving your results.

Awaken the Giant Within

Many people assume their ideal life will never be more than fantasy, but in reality, you have the power to create the life you dream about. In this book, life coach and self-help guru Tony Robbins provides insights and strategies to help you take control of every aspect of your life, from your emotions to your focus. In many cases, you can make transformational changes to your life through small adjustments, such as swapping out just one word in your vocabulary.

Tools of Titans

In his epic 707-page Tools of Titans, Tim Ferriss shares the habits and beliefs of 101 people at the top of their game, including tech investors like Chris Sacca and Peter Thiel, entrepreneurs like LinkedIn’s Reid Hoffman and Evernote’s Phil Libin, superhuman athletes like Amelia Boone and Wim Hof, media figures like Edward Norton and Whitney Cummings, and more.

These are the principles that successful people use to achieve audacious goals, improve themselves, and be happier. The premise: if you can apply the lessons from this book, you can be more effective.

Morning Routine Ideas: How to Start Your Day Off Right

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Darya Sinusoid

Darya’s love for reading started with fantasy novels (The LOTR trilogy is still her all-time-favorite). Growing up, however, she found herself transitioning to non-fiction, psychological, and self-help books. She has a degree in Psychology and a deep passion for the subject. She likes reading research-informed books that distill the workings of the human brain/mind/consciousness and thinking of ways to apply the insights to her own life. Some of her favorites include Thinking, Fast and Slow, How We Decide, and The Wisdom of the Enneagram.

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