My routine was dictated to me for most of my life by school and work, but once I became an entrepreneur all of that structure disappeared. It was critical for me to create consistency in as many parts of my life as I could, because the day-to-day of entrepreneurship varies so much. A morning routine for me was a way to establish a rhythm and tone for the rest of the day.” – Abe Cajudo
Whether it’s word for word or the thought behind it, I’ve gone over this quote at least 100 times. Routines, habits and just generally taking care of yourself matter so much as a freelancer. That’s why Gina, Carrie and countless other successful entrepreneurs have talked about how important it is.
And it’s not just entrepreneurs or freelancers but studies and research too. This study by the Journal of Applied Social Psychology suggests that morning people are more proactive. Another study, this one by the American Psychological Association, found that a regular morning routine can actually decrease stress and anxiety (say goodbye mad morning dash).
Taking Theory to the Real World
Over the past few months I’ve been on a mission to
improve start getting more intentional about my morning routine. Why now? With another daughter (Nora) due anyday now, I know my world is going to change dramatically.
This adventure has taken me through hundreds of hours of text/video/audio interviews along with interviewing almost forty entrepreneurs. The results? Not to say that there aren’t things I can improve upon, but my morning routine is
better real, my productivity has improved and the findings are in a [currently free] ebook so anyone can benefit without all the legwork.
If you’re ready to jumpstart your morning routine but don’t know where to start, take these three steps:
Step 1: Review your current morning routine. While you might not think it, pay attention to what you do to start the day. That quick morning stretch could be a habit you add-on or build out.
Step 2: Spend a few minutes thinking about what matters most – connecting with friends/family, getting organized or learning a new skill are all great examples.
Step 3: Identify roadblocks then come up with three small actions you can take to get past them to meet your goals.
With the above in hand, you’re ready to identify what you have to build upon, plus dismiss the activities that might not align with what really matters to you.
For me it was spending about 30 minutes each morning consuming unnecessary content online. Day in and day out, I was reading how to’s, when my personal review revealed I lacked creative inspiration and connection.
Need more inspiration?
The infographic below (click to expand) conveniently displays some of the most important takeaways from examining the morning routines of 100+ entrepreneurs. If you like the quote above or the data below, I invite you to check out Win YOUR Day on Amazon. Enjoy!
It’s your turn – Leave a comment sharing what’s your biggest challenge with starting (or keeping) solid morning routines!
Jonathon Knepper is a digital strategist, efficiency nerd, hot sauce fanatic and lover of great eats. When he’s not working (and sometimes when he is) you can find him traveling with his wife, daughter and soon to be newborn daughter. You can learn more about him on dudewiththehair.com or reach out to him on Twitter.