I’m a big proponent of developing some type of morning routine to start off your day on the right foot. I found that just spending a few minutes to start your day with the right habits and positive mindset really can have carryover into how the rest of your day develops. My current morning routine consists of:
- At least 5 minutes of meditation
- 10 minutes of stretching while listening to some sort of motivational piece
- Re-reading my list of priorities for the day (I write these action points on a sticky-note the night before)
- Drinking a few glasses of water
- Spending a few minutes envisioning my future and what kind of life I want to live
In total this only takes about 20 minutes but I found that I really feel refreshed and ready to begin my day after spending some time doing this routine every morning. Anyways, yesterday this notecard fell out of one of my books, as I usually kept this as a bookmark for many of my books I read in 2015. I had written on it a morning routine that I vowed to do every morning last year (I stopped looking at this because I’ve reached a point where I automatically do this without reading it now), and I wanted to write about the power of the last 3 points:
- Envisioning what you want
- WHY you want it
- Why you can’t remain where you currently are
Envisioning What You Want
When I first watched the documentary, The Secret, many years ago, I was introduced to the concept of the Law of Attraction and the power that our minds/thoughts possess. How I interpret the Law of Attraction is that we attract things into our lives based on the type of person we are. If you have ambitious goals/dreams, you must first become the type of person that can attract those types of things. But the first step is to know what you want, and I call this “envisioning.” We all have things that we want in life, but most of the time what we want is very ambiguous. Common goals such as “I want to be successful” or “I want to make more money” are too vague for your subconscious and conscious mind to know what to really work toward. I learned from several successful people that you need to be very, very specific with your goals if you want to be able to achieve them. Envisioning exactly the type of house you want to live in, how much money you want to have in your bank account, the type of lifestyle you want, the type of partner you want to have etc., will help you in knowing exactly what to work toward. So I decided every morning that I would close my eyes and mentally envision what I wanted in 3 phases: short term (end of the year), mid-term (in 5 years), and long-term goals (in 20 years). Envisioning in these 3 phases not only helps in mentally conditioning your mind to know exactly what you want to achieve, but it also helps to put a timeline/milestones in your head to help you move toward your goals.
Why You Want It
ET the Hip-Hop Preacher always says, “WHAT’S YOUR WHY?” Why do you do what you do? What’s the purpose for why you are trying to reach your goals? Without a strong enough “Why,” we’ll almost always inevitably fail in reaching our goals. In my opinion, the single most important “Why” for an entrepreneur is that they love what they do. I think this Steve Jobs quote sums it up pretty well:
People say you have to have a lot of passion for what you’re doing and it’s totally true. And the reason is because it’s so hard that if you don’t, any rational person would give up. It’s really hard. And you have to do it over a sustained period of time. So if you don’t love it, if you’re not having fun doing it, you don’t really love it, you’re going to give up. And that’s what happens to most people, actually. If you really look at the ones that ended up, you know, being “successful” in the eyes of society and the ones that didn’t, oftentimes, it’s the ones [who] were successful loved what they did so they could persevere, you know, when it got really tough. And the ones that didn’t love it quit because they’re sane, right? Who would want to put up with this stuff if you don’t love it?
Even in my last post on the movie, The Revenant, Leonardo DiCaprio’s character’s “Why,” which was his desire to seek vengeance for his son’s death, was so strong that he was able to battle death several times. Understanding your purpose for why you are doing what you are doing is not only critical in helping you reach your goals, but reflecting on this everyday will motivate you to endure the hardships that come your way when you’re able to remind yourself what you’re doing this all for.
Why You Can’t Remain Where You Currently Are
I read a quote one day that said, “The first step towards getting somewhere is to decide that you are not going to stay where you are.” For me personally, I’ve found that the greatest joy in life comes out of the process of personal growth. Whether it’s getting physically stronger, expanding my knowledge through books, or having new experiences, the process of growth has come to be an enjoyable journey that has benefited me greatly. I think a main reason that many people become miserable with their lives is that they enter into a situation where growth has stopped and/or they’ve become complacent with their lives. It’s not only important to know where you want to go, but understanding why you can’t remain where you are is another powerful mental exercise that can help you keep grinding forward. Of course you should always be grateful for what you currently have in your life, but never be satisfied with where you are. After practicing these habits daily, I have this feeling that my goals are not only pulling me forward, but I’m pushing myself toward them as well. In the end, it’s about practicing consistent habits that will have a compounding effect in the long haul.
“Compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world. He who understands it, earns it … he who doesn’t … pays it.”
― Albert Einstein