by Paul Casey

Add One Thing to Your Morning Routine

When I ask clients and seminar participants what they do to make their mornings more successful, I get a mixed bag of answers. Some say that they get up, shower, drink coffee, and dart out the door just in time to get to work on time.  This hair-on-fire method lacks intentionality and misses out on opportunities to really “get into” the day in a positive way.

What if you decided to add one positive habit to your morning routine? How could that change your outlook on your work and set a better tone for the start of your day? Maybe it’s your only chance for Me-Time! (see last week’s blog on Me-Time)

Here are some options to consider:

  • Journaling: A journal is a place to protest that doesn’t attract attention. It’s a private space to articulate how you feel. It can be a chronicle of your life that you could look back on, to see how far you have come. You can record your ups and downs, things you’ve learned and ideas to play with later.
  • Gratitude: Maybe in conjunction with journaling. There’s something about writing down and saying aloud what you are grateful for, that makes it become more real to you. Gratitude leads to joy and optimism and shifts your focus off all things outside of your control that discourage you.
  • Exercise: While there are equal benefits for exercising midday or after work, morning fitness time gets your metabolism going and gets those endorphins moving in your body. A little bit (or a full workout) of movement wakes you up, and kickstarts your energy for a great day ahead.
  • Personal growth/inspiration: What a great way to motivate yourself to be the best version of you–by reading or listening to something that pumps up your attitude. This self-development could look like reading a book or magazine, listening to a podcast or audiobook, or watching a TED talk while you are getting ready–or on the way to the office.
  • Prayer/meditation: Those who have these morning practices connect to their spiritual side first thing in the morning in solitude, programming their thoughts for success. Some people set an intention for the day. It’s grounding and peace-filling to connect to God or to your source of strength.
  • Family time: Having a few minutes with your partner or children before scurrying away for the day lets them know how much of a priority they are in your life. Maybe it’s having breakfast or a cup of coffee together with light conversation, or saying a prayer together to bless each other as you transition. And pets are family, too, and may need a little love!
  • Establishing your priorities for the day: While I try to convince people to do this step the night before, it’s a good idea to quickly survey your schedule for the day to mentally prepare for the conversations and tasks that you will undertake. And, to decide which things are most important, urgent, and significant to get done before day’s end, to make this day satisfying.

Which one do you want to put into place now, while tele-working, so that you can be ready to return to the office with a new habit that is setting you up for a productive day? Want to add to this list or share which ones you practice? Please comment.

And I’d love to connect on LinkedIn with you. I’m at


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