The Stronger Revolution is all about optimizing your life and achieving your goals through the aggregation of marginal gains. The daily progress needed to achieve your goals requires that you are firing on all cylinders as much as possible. On Episode #13 of The Stronger Revolution, I talk about the importance of morning and evening routines, and how to start your own. These routines act as bookends to our day to guarantee we are productive.
I would argue that most people don’t have a morning or evening routine. Therefore, their days start and end with no organization, and are probably quite hectic. I imagine someone coming home from work, shoving in a mindless dinner, letting the TV wash over them, and then maybe doing some work before finally turning the light out at some late 11pm hour. They wake up the next morning, hopefully grab something to eat as they run out the door, get to work on just in time, and spend the rest of the day feeling like they are playing catch up. For those who want to take control of their life and live through purpose, this is no way to live.
Instead, we use morning and evening routines. Both routines are made up on regular consistent actions carried out on a daily basis with a purpose. Because they are routines, we don’t have to think about them every morning and every night. That saves brain space and power. Thus, we can use routines to better set up for our perfect day without using a lot of energy. In our already hectic lives, these types of gains are golden. We are mindful when we structure our routines, but free up that brain space because by definition the routine becomes regular and habitual.
For a morning routine, you want to start with a consistent wakeup time. You want to wake up around the same time every day. You might try to sleep in a little on the weekends, but don’t let it be drastically different. For example, maybe you wake up at 6am on the weekdays and 7am on the weekends. Once you are awake, your goal is to take control and set an intention for your day. Some people like to mediate, journal, or read. Maybe you get in a workout. My morning routine always includes a healthy breakfast, a daily devotional journal, and designing my to-do list and daily schedule through a daily planner. If you can, avoid any screens for 30-60 minutes after waking up. Seeing various alerts on our electronic devices makes up reactive. We want to start the day being proactive, i.e. in control. By the time we get to work, we are ready and have control over whatever comes our way.
For an evening routine, the goal is to wind down, destress, and quiet our mind to prepare for a restful night of sleeping. To start the destress process, shut work off at a consistent time every night, i.e. I don’t check any emails after 7pm, or something similar. Make or buy a healthy dinner and sit down to enjoy it. If you like a particular television show, use it for the right reason, maybe to relax your mind or laugh a little. Add a reflection journal through with you can reflect on your day and possible changes for the future. Maybe take a quiet walk or read a book. You want to start creating with your mind and consumer a little bit. And finally, set a consistent bed time.
For more information on morning and evening routines, check out my Podcast: