Productivity Tip #5: Creating Your Own Hour of Power

ExerciseMy favorite and the most important time of my routine starts at the crack of dawn. Every weekday I wake up at 4:45 for my hour of power. It can be tough to drag myself out of bed at that time but I know that if I don’t get in my exercise, meditation and journaling time my day will be off. It is my time to myself that helps me better handle the stress of the upcoming day.

My morning routine starts in bed while I think about all the things that I am grateful for. Instead of being annoyed at the fact I’m up before the sun is out, I’m thankful for my health, family and career. This motivates me to get up and stretch and take some deep breaths.

I walk downstairs to exercise and then meditate for 5 minutes afterwards which helps bring down my heart and breathing rates.

I then write out my top 10 goals. Research has shown that writing them out rather than just reading them increases the likelihood of achieving them. I also write down the top six things that I want to accomplish for the day.

After getting ready and eating a healthy breakfast, I head out towards my clinic or to the hospital for a day of surgeries.

Rather than rushing out the door, stressed and wondering what the day will hold. I have a plan and peace of mind. There is a wonderful sense of accomplishment in knowing that you’ve already conquered some of the day’s most important tasks before 7am.

When we don’t give ourselves enough time to get ready we start off the day already in a harried, panicked and stressed state. We probably don’t have time to have a nutritious start to the day, we can forget things and end up being late.

Even if you’re a night owl, I recommend this hour of power for the mornings. If you do it at night you might be tempted to start tackling your projects instead of getting a good night’s sleep.

Everyone’s routine will be different but it doesn’t have to take as long as you think. I have my routine set so it only takes me an additional 45 minutes in the morning. If I waited to exercise until later, it often wouldn’t happen because I’d be tired or wanting to spend time with my family. In fact, research shows that the majority of the people who manage to exercise consistently do so in the morning.

Unexpected things can pop up during the day and prevent us from getting everything done. When we schedule our most important things for first thing in the morning, we are far more likely to accomplish them. It also sets a positive tone for the rest of the day and allows us to do less important tasks during our afternoon slump.

While getting up early can be difficult at first, it is an important habit to learn. I’ll address the importance of sleep and how to get up early in the next post.

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