Sustaining Any Habit is All About Mindset

Let’s talk morning routines. Do you have one? Do you need one?

To be honest, it’s something that was difficult for me to build. I used to talk about it a lot and wasn’t taking action. Now that I’m into it consistently, it’s totally changing my world.

As a starting point, it sets the tone for the day because how we wake up inherently impacts how we show up. To go a step further, it contributes to how we feel, sets the pace for the rest of the day, provides an opportunity to get grounded and regulate both physically and emotionally.

Take an inventory of what your morning routine currently looks like and check in on where there is opportunity to enhance it.

My morning routine started with one habit — reading. After I gained momentum and consistency I was able to stack several habits on top of it. I started setting my alarm to get up while it was still dark out and everyone else was asleep. I read day after day and I felt successful. That’s key because sustaining any habit is all about mindset and small wins.

I wanted to set myself up for success to have the best possible day so I researched the habits of highly successful people. There were 6 key practices that surfaced to an effective morning routine: reading, meditating, practicing gratitude, drinking water, writing and movement.

After I’d been reading every morning for a few weeks I started to practice gratitude before I let my feet hit the floor. I don’t write my gratitude down. In that moment I do an inventory of the day before; whatever pops into my head that I feel abundant in and grateful for. Sometimes it’s the moment when my dog runs into my room in the morning. That small moment when I pick her up and squeeze her is the best part of my day.

From there I started to incorporate meditation, drinking water and writing. Movement has always been part of my morning, but I’ve tailored it a little bit differently.

I like to think that my morning routine actually starts the night before. I have my headphones right on my nightstand and I bookmark the meditation that I want to do the next morning. This way there’s no fussing around in the morning with deciding what meditation I’m going to do. It’s done. Just like that I’ve removed a potential point of resistance.

From a behavior change perspective, it’s about how can I make this seamless and easy to do?

So when I wake up, I practice gratitude. I put my headphones in, I sit on the floor, I open up the meditation that I’ve chosen the night before (I typically do a 10 minute one) and then from there I go back in bed, and get my book out.

My book is already sitting on my nightstand so there’s nowhere for me to go. It’s right there making it easy for me to pick up my book and start to read. I also keep my glass of water on my nightstand so when I wake up in the morning my glass of water is sitting right there. Right after I’m done reading I pick up the journal that’s also on my nightstand and I start writing.

Next up I go into my movement. Often I’ll pre-select what I’ll do in the morning. This might not be my workout for the day. It might just be stretching or it might be 10 minutes of some kind of strength training. There was one day where I was running out of time before my first session and I was like I’m just going to do 10 sit-ups because I want to keep the habit of the whole routine up.

Again, it’s all about taking the decision out of it and reducing the amount of steps involved so it’s seamless. With my morning routine everything I need is right there. The all-in mindset trap is easy to fall into. So my point is to start with just one habit.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed about building a morning routine what I would recommend is that you pick one thing. It doesn’t have to be any of the six that I did. Just pick one thing and just start doing that thing tomorrow.

Get in the driver’s seat and decide what the pace of the day is going to be. Be present, fill your cup with habits that support you mentally, physically, spiritually, and emotionally. When you take these steps you shift from starting your day in a rush with your heart racing, go go go, and chaos to calm and ease.

I cannot wait to hear how it changes how you show up each day and how you’re able to go into your day more grounded.

I’d love to hear about one thing that you’re going to focus on that would bring you joy, that would fill your cup, that would slow your pace down.

Comment down below and please share this with anybody else that you want to bring along for accountability.