The average person sleeps about 8-9 hours a day. Now, just imagine for a second how much more exciting and successful your life could be if you would gain 3 additional hours of valuable time every single day.
Imagine, getting up at 5AM without being tired and buzzing with energy throughout the entire day.
In only one year, you would gain almost 1100 hours or 45 days.
What would you do with all that extra time?
You could take your business to the next level, you could learn a foreign language, you could spend more time with your family…
But, isn’t it terribly difficult to get up early every day?
Sure, forming a new habit is always somewhat challenging at the beginning. You may be struggling a bit the first few days. After one week it is already much easier and after 3-4 weeks you will have created a new habit and it surely won’t be a big deal any longer.
So, yes, you probably will be tired for about a week. But, your body gets used to the new rhythm and to having less sleep very quickly – much quicker than you may think.
And you know, it is not so much the quantity of sleep you get, but much more the quality of your sleep that really counts.
Several years ago, I was sleeping almost 9 hours a day. And still, several times during the day I felt very tired. Now, I’m sleeping only 6 hours a day and I’m feeling much fresher and much more energized.
Here is the simple formula to greatly improve the quality of your sleep and to make getting up at 5AM really easy:
1: Change your beliefs about getting up early
Most people believe that they need 8 or 9 hours of sleep a day to “function” properly. I know from my experience and from the experience of many other people, that 6 hours is absolutely enough.
Re-condition your mind and tell yourself that after a short period of adaptation you will be feeling absolutely great with only 6 hours of sleep a day and that it is NOT a big deal at all to get up at 5AM.
2: Don’t eat several hours before going to sleep
I recommend, you don’t eat anything after 7PM. Also, avoid drinking coffee, black tea or alcohol 6-7 hours before going to sleep.
If you eat before going to sleep, additional energy will be required by your digestive system, the quality of your sleep will suffer and you will wake up tired in the morning.
3. You need a good reason to get up early
Think about why you would like to have more time in your life. What drives and motivates you? This will help you to get up early.
I also recommend you write a task list for the following day and you define what task(s) you will tackle first thing in the morning. If you get up early and then you don’t know what to do, there is a “risk” that you just go back to bed.
4: Calm your mind before going to bed
Make it a habit to meditate or relax 20-30 minutes before going to bed. Don’t work or watch TV just before going to bed. If you do that, your mind keeps on running, it will take you longer to fall asleep, your sleep won’t be as deep and relaxed as it should be and you will be tired the next day.
5: Make a firm decision to get up at 5AM and turn it into an exciting challenge
Before falling asleep, tell yourself to get up at 5AM – no matter what! Visualize yourself having a deep, relaxing and energizing good night’s sleep and getting out of bed at 5AM feeling refreshed and excited to start the day.
That way, you condition your subconscious mind and getting up early will be much easier.
Make “getting up at 5AM” an exciting challenge. Most people won’t even try their entire life, many of those who try give up after only a few days… Yes, getting up early is a habit mostly used by highly successful people.
Will you succeed? Of course you will!
6: Don’t Snooze
I know, it’s tempting to snooze when the alarm clock rings, but it only makes your challenge of getting up early more difficult. You snooze once, the next day maybe twice, then you stay half an hour longer…
Don’t think, don’t negotiate, don’t try to find any reasons why it would not be a problem to stay a few minutes longer… just get up, just do it!
You can even practice this behavior during the day: Lie down, set your alarm clock to ring in 5 minutes, relax and pretend you are sleeping… and as soon as the alarm goes off, tell yourself: “Time to get up, I’m looking forward to another exciting day…” – and just get out of bed.
7: Put your alarm clock out of reach
If the temptation to snooze is too strong, put the alarm clock further away from your bed so that you have no other choice than getting out of bed to switch off the alarm.
8: Time to fully wake up
Ok, you just got out of your bed, but probably you are not fully awake yet. Open the window and take 5-10 deep breaths of fresh air. I also recommend some light physical exercises for at least 10-15 minutes to fully oxygenate your body and to get ready for the day.
9: Be proud of your achievement
Less than 1% of the population gets up at 5AM and typically it’s only the high achievers and the super successful people. So, take a minute, enjoy your achievement and be proud of yourself.
This may sound a bit childish, but it’s really important. Having this feeling of accomplishment will provide you with additional motivation and it will make getting up early easier for you the following days.
10: Make sure your nutrition is healthy and balanced
The quality of your nutrition has a huge influence on your energy level. The higher the quality of your nutrition, the more energy you will have and the less sleep you will need.
I recommend you buy a good book on healthy nutrition. Here are some basic tips to give you some ideas: Eat more fruits and vegetables (ideally organic), drink enough water. Avoid alcohol, fast food, junk food, too much coffee or black tea… Reduce your consumption of sugar, unsaturated fatty acids, meat… as much as possible
Trust me, it’s not as difficult as you may think and it gets easier every day
Once again, getting up early will probably be somewhat challenging at the beginning, but it gets easier every day. You just have to push through the first 7-10 days. This takes some discipline and will power, but it is well worth it.
Yes, you will be tired at the beginning, but after a week or so you will realize having more and more energy during the day and feeling less and less tired.
Our goal here is to be buzzing with energy throughout the entire day while sleeping less. There is no point in getting up at 5AM if afterwards you are tired for the rest of the day.
Some people recommend to make getting up early a slow and incremental process, where you get up 15 minutes earlier every 1-2 weeks.
When I decided to get up earlier, I immediately went from about 8AM to 6AM and about a year later I decided to give 5AM a try and it worked quite well for me.
But, you can experiment with both approaches.
Are you an early riser? What was the most difficult part for you in developing the habit of getting up early?
Do you know about any other great tips to make getting up early easier?
4 Simple Yet Effective Ways to Boost Your Team’s Motivation as a Startup
Many startup leaders are able to grow their organizations quickly, thanks to their off-the-charts motivation and productivity. Unfortunately, when the organization is no longer a one-man show, it becomes very difficult to equip their team members with the same degree of motivation. This can negatively affect the organization’s morale, productivity, and possibly revenue.
Below are the four simple and effective ways to boost your team’s motivation as a startup:
1. Evaluate your own leadership as a leader
Many leaders had their own share of experience with bad leadership. Tim Denning, Addicted2Success contributor, also goes as far as saying, “working with a bad boss is a soul crushing dream killer.” No leaders want to be known as a bad leader. Unfortunately, some startup leaders unintentionally fall into the trap of micromanaging and never listening to the team members because they might not always have an experience as a leader.
If your team is big enough, you can also consider doing an anonymous survey that evaluates your leadership. But if that is not an option, there are tools that allow you to assess your own leadership performance. Go through the assessment, and focus on implementing the changes. Even if the team members’ motivation does not skyrocket overnight, there will be an improvement overtime.
“The challenge of leadership is to be strong, but not rude; be kind, but not weak; be bold, but not a bully; be thoughtful, but not lazy; be humble, but not timid; be proud, but not arrogant; have humor, but without folly.” – Jim Rohn
2. Focus more on intrinsic motivation
A study of 200,000 U.S public sector employees by Yoon Jik Cho and James Perry showed that intrinsic motivation, rather than extrinsic motives such as position and salary, makes triple the impact on employee motivation and engagement. This study shows that motivating team members through position and salary is important, yet the biggest transformation will show when you get team members to focus on internal rewards.
For startups and teams with a limited budget, this represents a powerful way to be able to attract and retain the best team members. Though there will be some team members that might be disengaged because they are more motivated by position and salary, there will also be team members that may choose to stay in the organization because of the team’s culture– even if they get other job offers that might be more extrinsically appealing.
Challenge your team members with bigger responsibilities and goals. Encourage them to continue developing their skills or learn new ones. Show them you appreciate their loyalty. The internal rewards and the personal loyalty that your team members develop by working with your team will ensure that they can continue to stay engaged to the work and stay motivated to get the work done.
3. Be specific on HOW their work matters, and how much you care
Most leaders are aware of the importance of great team members and focus on recognizing the team’s efforts. However, when specificity as to how their work makes a difference in the team is added on, it can become extremely powerful. Team members want to know that the business cares about their work and jobs, but also about making a positive impact on the society.
Everytime you remind your team members about how their work makes a difference in the company’s growth, and how the organization makes a difference in the community, your team member will not only feel pride in their work, but they will also be fired up with an extra dose of motivation.
“If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself.” – Henry Ford
4. Encourage team members to become self leaders
An article by HR Digest shows that 25% of millennial team members are looking for a chance to prove their leadership skills. Although it is highly encouraged for startup leaders to challenge their team members and give them opportunities to showcase their leadership abilities, it can be risky if they do not have a previous leadership experience. That is when self leadership comes in.
Self leadership is a concept developed by Bryant and Kazan and is about having a clear individual identity as a leader. This can mean having a clear understanding of the vision, who they are as a leader and what their capabilities are as a leader. This helps your team members embody an identity of a good leader while developing their leadership skills.
There are many ways of empowering team members to develop self-leadership, such as encouraging them to take on new challenges or allowing them to partake in professional development activities. It can also mean giving them room to innovate and make their own decisions with their authority.
As the team gets bigger and the organization is no longer a one-man show, it can be challenging for leaders to keep their team members motivated. However, with these simple ways, it’ll be easier to equip your team members with the extra dose of motivation to continue doing their best and boost the team’s performance as a whole.
How do you keep your team motivated and excited? Share your ideas and thoughts below!
5 Ways to Remain Undefeated In Life and Cherish Each Moment Successfully
Life is an amalgamation of existence and survival. It often replicates Pandora’s box. When we talk about existence, it relates to one’s identity. When we talk about survival, stories of struggles, success, victories, and defeats come into the panorama. Survival defines the continuation of existence.
The concept of existence makes us curious about, “who am I”? Whereas, instincts of survival raise queries about “how to know who I am”? This journey from Who to How comprises several halts and platforms to make life interesting and beautiful.
Let’s Have a Look at the Surroundings
Have you ever seen a bird building its nest? It appears beautiful yet simple, right? Stop and think about the efforts they have put behind its construction. They collect sticks, twigs, yarn, grass, leaves, mud, and many other things. They prove to be skilled architects of nature. This is one of their necessities to survive.
When the eggs hatched, the baby birds come into existence and struggle to survive in the external environment. They adapt and try to fly. They fall and get scared but never give up because they know this is vital for their survival. Then a day comes when they fly higher and soar in the sky.
Why doesn’t their survival seem complicated to us? Why don’t they have any emotional and mental breakdowns? Human beings have evolved and are privileged to experience emotions.
What Makes Life Interesting and Brings Meaning to Your Existence?
There are 3 things that brings mean to your existence: Desire, Determination and Struggle.
Human beings have desire to achieve things. Sometimes desires become the cause of one’s misery, but desires can also be the driving force which let you manifest your highest potential. Having desires is important. It motivates us to forge ahead towards victory. It gives us a reason to work and strive for more.
But desire should not dominate you, and you should not depend on it to be happy. Your willpower and attitude determine your approach towards its fulfilment.Many times we don’t get the desired results. Sometimes it is better than what we thought, and sometimes it’s the opposite. A wise person neither gets swayed away with the victory nor disheartened with failure.
If the desire is the force, then determination is the velocity. Their product gives us the power to become courageous and fight like an invincible spirit. The determination provides a direction and illuminates your way to success. Hence, determined, every time you get a setback in life. When life throws curve balls, apply the technique of self-motivation and wisdom.
When we do not achieve a set goal, we consider ourselves failures. When life doesn’t seem easy, when things turn out to be contrary or opposite of our expectations, we define the situation as tough and full of struggles.
The real struggle in life is not with the situation but with ourselves. If you succeed to win over the lowest state of your mind, your weaknesses, you win half of the battle. We win the other half with courage, hope, and a never give up attitude.
Winning is important, but to never get defeated is something even more important. If you remain undefeated no matter what, that’s a success.
Here are 5 Ways to Remain Undefeated:
1. Build a Habit of Reading and Self-Motivation
In the moment of delusion and doubt, books prove to be a guiding force and a loyal companion, capable of empowering and motivating you. When we are stuck in a situation and not able to figure anything out, reading an article, blog, book or magazine has been proven to be a saviour.
A habit of reading helps you to learn and grow. It’s like self-help pills. You keep yourself motivated. Whenever doubt comes, you seek the writings of ancient wisdom, derive its meaning according to you and keep yourself in a high life state.
2. Thinking and Introspection
Thinking is an art, and introspection is the tool to perform this art. When we spend time with the inner self, we contemplate many things. When we dwell in the dialogue with ourself, we find answers to many questions, and our vision becomes more explicit.
We know ourselves. We don’t get affected by people’s criticism or applause. We consistently focus on our thoughts and keep moving forward along the chosen path, and that is the key to achieve your goal.
3. Seek Inspiration from a Mentor
A mentor is someone who guides you throughout and enables you to achieve success in your life. A mentor is a source of inspiration. A mentor can be anyone; a teacher, a friend, your parents, grandparents, or even some celebrity. When you get down and gloomy, look at your mentor and many deadlocks of your life open automatically.
4. Connect Yourself to Spirituality
Spirituality is the way of living one’s life unaffected by worldly affairs. When we open the gate to eternity, we leave behind our footprints. It will not only guide others but also paves their way to a peaceful life.
Practicing Yoga brings you closer to spirituality and meditation and helps with mental health. Hence, Yoga and meditation have the quality of a lotus flower. No matter what condition you are going through, you will bloom.
It calms your mind, relaxes your body, and improves your concentration. Your stress levels reduce and you achieve the hormonal balance your body and mind is looking for. This balance boosts your confidence and your belief system.It is a capsule for the overall development of your personality and inculcating this habit in our daily routine takes us to a higher level of success.
5. Be Courageous and Never Get Defeated
Courage is a virtue which enables us to make our dreams come true. To keep fighting the battle of life, you must have courage. It helps you to overcome your fear. When you win over your phobias, you increase your potential. You never get defeated, and that is an epic victory one can report.
In the weakest of your moments, when life seems unfair and ruthless, calm down, take a deep breath, close your eyes, and talk to yourself. Pay gratitude for whatever you have. You will find the meaning of your existence and that ethos to survive will never let you get defeated. You will triumph.
3 Ways to Rethink Motivation in a Busy World
I’ve been thinking a lot about the nature of motivation recently. For me, motivation comes at different points during the day. I tend to be most motivated first thing in the morning. I’m not a night owl by any means, but sometimes I wish I could be. Other people are hopeless in the mornings, but they can stay up until the wee hours working on a project that inspires them.
Unfortunately, sometimes motivation doesn’t strike when you need it to. Sometimes you’re not able to arrange your day to align with specific spikes in motivation, and you’re forced to find opportunities to be productive at the corners of the day.
Below, are several ways you can set yourself up for victory, despite a busy schedule or an inability to find the right time to feel motivated:
1. Tee yourself up for a motivation session
I’m not much of a golfer, so the fact that I’m using a golf phrase to preface this tip probably doesn’t make sense. But the point is that sometimes you have to make it easy for yourself to succeed when it’s time to make a leap. You can break a task down into its component parts, and pretty soon it doesn’t seem so difficult.
That’s what motivation is about sometimes. You can take that first step towards getting things progressed. You can set up everything so you just have to jump in with both feet first thing when you have the energy. Sometimes this means creating a to do list for yourself the night before to start tackling first thing in the morning.
Sometimes it can mean drafting an email or creating a template for a phone conversation that you’re planning to have first thing the next day. Whatever you can do to get your head right and set up the right incentives for you to take that swing the very next day when you’re feeling prepared, the better off you will be. Try it next time you’re feeling tired. Take 10 minutes to tee up your next move.
“Wanting something is not enough. You must hunger for it. Your motivation must be absolutely compelling in order to overcome the obstacles that will invariably come your way.” – Les Brown
2. Fire, then aim
Unfortunately, sometimes teeing up a solution isn’t going far enough. What really works best is to put your head down and try to at least make a start at that “thing” you want to accomplish, that product you want to create, or that goal you want to reach. This can mean putting pen to paper, picking up the phone, typing out that email, or asking for that advice.
Do something, do anything. Whatever it takes, force yourself to make a minuscule action to move the ball forward. If you had a gun to your head or you were forced to do something to avoid losing everything in one moment, what would you do?
Perhaps this is a bit drastic, but by building a sense of urgency in the moment, even when it’s the last thing you want to do, you can find a deep source of motivation within you and set yourself up to tweak your efforts the next day.
Too often you’re overwhelmed and frozen into inaction when you reach for a large goal. This is the point of the “fire, then aim” approach.
3. Rid yourself of self doubt
One of the best ways to set yourself up for victory in the long run is to build your self confidence. If you truly believe in yourself, you will find the motivation to persist and persevere.
If you truly have faith in yourself and your ability to deliver what you set out to deliver, you can do it. The world will align to your dreams. But this won’t happen if you let yourself be talked down by self-doubt and worry about what others will think.
“The moment you feel yourself hesitate on something you know you should do, count 5-4-3-2-1 to activate your prefrontal cortex and interrupt the habit of overthinking, self-doubt, and fear.” – Mel Robbins
Some worry and concern is rational and even important, but for the most part, fear will only hinder your progress. Get the negative voices out of your head by tapping into the inner ego and reminding yourself that you can accomplish what you set out to accomplish.
If you put your mind to something, and you are stubborn in your resistance to listening to other people’s’ opinions of what you do, then you will be hard pressed to not succeed.
The hardest part is the start. Finding ways to make that start even a little bit less painful can make the time that it takes to create something amazing all that much easier.
How do you motivate yourself? Share your ideas below!
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