There are a million and one articles out there about the top habits and the best morning rituals to follow. And that’s awesome, because habits are great. I believe habits are one of the cornerstone key elements for achieving success.
But once you have your habits down and you’ve decided to commit to them, you’ll discover that it’s not as easy as it sounds to just slot a long list of new habits into your new morning routine.
So I’ve decided to share with you some nice and easy techniques that I share with my students in my elevate. mentorship program so you to can implement them along side your new morning habits for better success.
Before you start, here are 7 Million Dollar Habits you can start implementing in your life today (a video I shot 4 years ago but stills gets shared all over the web today):
1 – Know The True Value of Each Habit
A great way to work out if you’re wasting way too much time on menial day to day task’s is to sit back and ask yourself:
“If I was running a billion dollar company. Would I be doing …. (fill in the blank) or, If my life will be ending in the next few months, would this task of…… be important to me”
And if the answer is “No”, then find someone you can delegate the task to, or cut back on that specific task. You should always be thinking… What is the value in doing this task?
A great way to get clear on the value of your habits is to write down a list of the habits you practice daily, good and bad. And, remember, you want to get familiar with them all.
I call this “The Habit Value Exercise”
Then next to each habit write the benefit of sticking to it. If it’s a negative habit, you will know straight away whether it serves you or not.
After you have written out each habit, write a number next to each habit in the order of importance.
1 being the most important of course.
This will highlight for you, what the most important habits are you should be sticking to each day so you can live a more fulfilling and successful life.
2 – Take Advantage of Your Will Power
Your will power is at it’s strongest first thing in the morning and it’s just like a muscle, it fatigues when it’s over exerted. So the first thing you want to do is tackle your biggest and heftiest tasks as soon as you get into the day.
Plus, if you knock out your biggest task first thing in the morning, you’ll breeze through your list of to-do’s with style and grace!
3 – Practice Gratitudes to Strengthen Your Habits
Practice being grateful for the positive habits you have implemented. Gratitudes serve as great reminders of what you have accomplished. So when you focus on appreciating the positive habits you’ve been able commit to this will reinforce them and make them easier for you to stick to.
Focus is another key to success. Gratitudes are a great way to stay focused on the positive.
When you say your gratitudes ie.. “I am grateful for the fact that I can stick to pushups/skipping/running every morning”, then make sure you justify why.
For example; “Because, this will keep my body in top form, the exercise will improve my brain performance and I will feel a lot happier from the endorphins released by doing this.”
This is a powerful technique to use while practicing any gratitude in your life because it encourages you to dig deeper to really feel why you’re doing it and it links you to a positive thought about that habit.
This practice is deeper than just reading a bunch of inspirational quotes.
And pleasure is a great motivator!
4 – Know That Energy is The Most Important Commodity
Here’s a question for you: For you to achieve more and be more in life, what would you need more of?
Time or Energy?
Hold that thought…..
Now Let’s say the average age expectancy is around 79 years old. So If you spent most of your life sitting around on a couch but you lived for 100 years, would you be able to achieve more in life than someone who lived for only 79 years?
If that person who lived to 79 years old was someone who had an abundance of energy, who maximised their days by waking up at a reasonable time and made the effort on a daily basis to fulfil their life; physically, spiritually, mentally and emotionally who would you say truly lived to the fullest?
As you can see, from this example, Energy shows up as the top priority. Not time. Time is only good if you know what to do with it.
So if the key to living with higher impacting habits is to stick to them on a consistent basis wouldn’t it make sense to focus your day, and your habits around maximising your energy?
Here are some Energy Increasing actions you can add into your morning routine to work alongside your habits:
Take a 10 minute walk around the block – Studies show that a brisk 10 minute walk can bring a long lasting energy boost for up to 2 hours. Exercise also fires up the (prefrontal cortex) a.k.a “the executive part of your brain” for better focus, analysing and decision making. If walkings not your thing, pump iron, run, skip, swim or spin. Whatever gets your heart rate up and your body moving.
Stay away from Sugars and Heavy foods – Sugar may give you a temporary buzz but the crash is not worth it. If you’re looking for a long lasting energy, keep your diet light and healthy.
Hydrate – When you hydrate your body is no longer overheated, your body can function fluently, revitalising your muscles, digestion and brain function for you to knock out your daily habits.
Have a Cold Shower – Cold showers, or James Bond Showers as they call them have also proven to increase Alertness, Immunity, Circulation, Weight Loss, Stress Relief and Muscle Recovery. Everything that works hand in hand with daily energy.
I made it a habit to have a cold shower for 31 days in March. It’s been 49 days now and It feels like something is wrong if I don’t have the shower chilled. So yes! It get’s easier. You adjust and it’s well worth the benefits.
Meditate – Your Brain uses around 20% of your bodies energy to operate throughout the day so why not recharge it with a meditation or two.
Meditation is different to sleep, Deepak Chopra recently told me during my podcast interview with him that meditation is nearly 2 times more powerful than sleep. How amazing is that?
Cut back on distractions – Some e-mails, Facebook messages, Twitter replies and other notifications can stress you out or leave a lot more unnecessary things on your plate. So switch off or disable any distractions until the end of the day so you can be more effective with your more important tasks when your energy and will power is high and when it counts.
5 – Get the gloves ready for your “Tomorrow PUNCH LIST!”
That’s right! The most successful achievers stick to their lists and make it a daily habit to craft it the night before.
You should write out a list of things you need to do tomorrow, before you get there. A lot of the super successful I have interviewed over the last few years shared with me that they list the actions they need to take the following day so they can get a good nights rest, knowing they will have direction and structure to work with when they wake up the next day.
This is a great way to put your mind at rest so you can be present at dinner and with your family and friends outside of work hours.
There are so many articles out there about the Top Habits. I even wrote one for Entrepreneur.com that spread like wildfire all over the internet, but these habits can be more effective if you approach them with the extra techniques I mentioned above.
I hope you enjoyed this advice. The clients have already implemented these tips and have had incredible results. If you want monthly mentorship with me then make sure you join me in the elevate. mentorship program and I will show you the ropes to success.
I’d love to hear your experiences with implementing your success habits and if you have any other nifty ways to super charge them?
How to Stay Motivated to Achieve Your Goals
Time is the raw material of our lives. How we choose to spend it, shapes our life accordingly. So having the motivation to spend it on achieving goals is crucial to creating a life we want.
What is Motivation?
The Oxford dictionary defines motivation as the desire or willingness to do something – our drive to take action.
Scientifically, motivation has its roots in the dopamine pathways of our brains. When we do something that feels good, that’s dopamine kicking in. Our actions are driven by the desire for that reward (the good feeling).
Author Steven Pressfield describes motivation more practically. He says we hit a point where the pain of not doing something becomes greater than the pain of doing it. He sees motivation as crossing the threshold where it’s easier to take action than it is to be idle. Like choosing to feel awkward while making sales calls over feeling disappointed about a diminishing bank account.
However you choose to think about it, we all want to harness motivation to achieve our goals.
How to Get Motivated
James Clear, the author of Atomic Habits, says that most people misunderstand motivation. They think that motivation is what gets us to take action. In reality, motivation is often the result of action, not the cause of it. Once we start a task, it’s easier to continue making progress. Like Isaac Newton’s first law: objects in motion stay in motion.
This means most of the resistance when working on your goals comes right before we start. Since motivation naturally occurs after we start, we need to focus on making starting easier.
4 Ways to Make Starting Easier
1. Schedule it
One reason people can’t get started on things is that they haven’t planned when to do it.
When things aren’t scheduled it’s easier for them to fall by the wayside. You’ll end up hoping motivation falls in your lap or hoping that you’ll muster enough willpower to get it done.
An article in the Guardian said, “If you waste resources trying to decide when or where to work, you’ll impede your capacity to do the work.”
2. Measure something
It’s easy to feel uninspired when you don’t know if you’re making progress or what you’re even working towards. That’s why you need to make your success measurable in some way. Starting is easy when you know exactly how much closer your current actions will bring you to achieving your goal.
3. Extrinsic motivation
This type of motivation is from external factors. It can be either positive or negative. Positive motivation consists of incentives like money, prizes, and grades. Negative motivation consists of deterrents like being fired, having a fight, or being fined. Extrinsic motivation doesn’t work effectively long-term, but it can work well in the short term to get you started on something.
4. Make it public
Keep yourself accountable by telling friends and family your goals, or even sharing them on social media. This makes it easier to start something because you’re pressured to not let others down.
How to Stay Motivated Long Term
When we say we want to feel motivated to do something, we don’t want to be pushed or guilted into doing a task. We want to be so attracted and drawn to the idea that we can’t resist not taking action. That’s why it’s important to build a foundation that will set you up for consistency.
These are 5 techniques that will help you do just that:
1. Stay in your goldilocks zone
The goldilocks zone is when a task is the perfect level of difficulty—not too hard and not too easy. In this zone, we reach peak motivation and focus.
For example, let’s say you’re playing a serious tennis match against a 4-year-old. On this level of difficulty, you’ll quickly become bored and not want to play. Now let’s say you’re playing a serious tennis match against Serena Williams. On this level of difficulty, you’ll quickly become demotivated because the match is too challenging.
The Goldilocks zone is in the middle of that spectrum. You want to face someone with equal skill as you. That way you have a chance to win, but you have to focus and try for it. Adjusting your workload and goals over time to stay within your Goldilocks zone keeps you engaged and motivated long-term.
2. Pursue intrinsically motivated goals
Being intrinsically motivated to achieve a goal is when you want to achieve it for what it is. There are no external factors like a reward or the risk of being fired. The drive behind your actions is coming from within.
For most intrinsic goals we pursue them because they will enrich our lives or bring us closer to fulfillment. That makes these goals extremely sustainable long-term because they directly affect our quality of life and the things we care about.
3. Use “chunking”
Chunking is the technique of breaking down a goal into smaller short-term targets. By doing this you achieve multiple successes in your pursuit of the main goal. This triggers the brain’s reward system and drives you to keep going.
Traditionally, you may set a goal that you expect to achieve in one year. That’s a long time to commit without seeing any results along the way. By chunking your goals into monthly or quarterly targets, you get the consistent positive reinforcement you need to stay motivated long-term.
For example, instead of trying to lose 50 pounds in one year, try to lose 4 pounds every month for 12 months.
4. Be flexible
We’re all victims of circumstance. Things happen along our journey that we can either adjust to or quit because of. That’s why it’s important to have leeway and flexibility when you’re pursuing a goal. If you expect everything to go perfectly, the inevitable failure can make you disengaged and desireless. When you plan for things to go wrong, you make sure you can keep up for the long haul.
5. Pursue your goals in a sustainable fashion
Don’t lose hope when you’re not an overnight success. Overnight successes are the 1%—for the most part, they don’t exist. What we see as an “overnight success” is actually countless hours of work behind the scenes finally hitting a tipping point. Pursuing goals is a story of patience, persistence, and unseen effort.
Don’t compare yourself to others. Comparison is a recipe for a drop in self-confidence and satisfaction. It also cultivates a mindset where you think you haven’t done enough. As a result, you may raise your expectations and put more pressure on yourself.
This is pointless because things worth achieving take time. So we obviously won’t compare to the things around us when starting.
Mastering motivation is a superpower. With that ability at your fingertips, you can accomplish your goals and shape a life you want to live in.
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