10 things highly productive people do at the start of every day

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Ever wonder how some people get so much done every day?

Their secret is all about how they start their mornings.

Mornings are powerful. What you do after you wake up can really change how your whole day goes.

If you start your day right, it’s easier to stay focused and get lots of things done.

In this article, I’m going to look at 10 things that really productive people do every morning.

These aren’t hard things to do, but if you make them habits, they can make your days way more productive.

1. Rise and Shine Early

You know what they say, “the early bird catches the worm.”

And this couldn’t be truer for super productive people.

They’re up with the dawn, often before the rest of the world starts buzzing. This quiet, tranquil time of the day is perfect for them to get started on their tasks without any interruptions.

Being an early riser doesn’t mean they’re sacrificing their sleep. They ensure they’re hitting the sack early enough to get a full night’s rest.

And no, they don’t just mindlessly scroll on their phones during these wee hours. Instead, they use this time to jump-start their day in a calm and proactive way.

Remember, turning into an early bird doesn’t happen overnight. It’s about gradually adjusting your sleep schedule and making the most of those peaceful morning hours.

So maybe tomorrow, try setting your alarm a few minutes earlier than usual? You might be surprised by how much you can get done. 

Practical Tip: Gradually adjust your bedtime to wake up earlier each day. Try setting the alarm 15 minutes earlier each week until you reach your desired wake-up time. Avoid using your phone or watching TV before bed to improve sleep quality.

2. Hydrate and Fuel

Once they’re up and about, the first thing super productive people do is hydrate and fuel their bodies.

They start by drinking a glass of water first thing in the morning. After a long night’s sleep, your body needs to rehydrate, and there’s no better way to kick-start your metabolism.

Next up, breakfast. And no, we’re not talking about grabbing a chocolate bar or downing a cup of coffee on the go.

Productive people know the importance of a nutritious breakfast. It’s all about giving their bodies the right kind of fuel from the get-go.

Think proteins, whole grains, fruits – foods that keep you feeling full longer and give you a steady release of energy throughout the day.

They take the time to prepare and eat their breakfast, knowing that a good meal sets them up for success.

Don’t skip that morning glass of water or rush past breakfast! Starting your day right means feeding your body right.

Give it the hydration and nutrition it needs, and it’ll thank you with buckets of energy for the day. 

Practical Tip: Prepare a bottle of water the night before and place it beside your bed. Have it first thing upon waking. Plan a balanced, easy-to-prepare breakfast or prepare it the night before to ensure you have a nutritious start.

3. Get Moving

Here’s a thing I’ve learned from observing highly productive people: they always find a way to get moving in the morning.

It’s not always a full-blown workout session, but even a quick stretch or a brisk walk can work wonders.

For instance, I’ve started incorporating a short yoga routine into my mornings.

I used to think that squeezing in exercise before work would leave me feeling tired, but boy, was I wrong!

It was tough for the first few days, but soon enough, I realized that it actually leaves me feeling more energized and ready to tackle the day.

This morning movement helps shake off any sleepiness and gets the blood flowing. It’s like telling your body, “Hey, it’s time to wake up and get going!”

Plus, there’s that awesome feeling of accomplishment knowing that you’ve done something good for your body first thing in the morning.

Why not try adding some movement to your morning routine? Even a quick dance-off to your favorite song or a few stretches can make a huge difference! 

Practical Tip: Choose a short, enjoyable form of exercise that you can stick to, like a 10-minute dance session, a quick jog, or some stretching exercises. Keep your exercise clothes ready the night before to make starting easier.

4. Work out the Plan

Highly productive people plan their day ahead. As soon as they’re up and about, they take a few moments to jot down their to-do list for the day.

Having a clear game plan helps keep them focused and ensures they’re not wasting time figuring out what to do next.

Now, here’s an interesting fact: Research shows that writing down your tasks can make you more likely to achieve them. It’s called the “Zeigarnik effect,” named after Russian psychologist Bluma Zeigarnik.

She discovered that people remember uncompleted or interrupted tasks better than completed tasks.

So, when you write down your tasks, your brain wants to see them completed, making you more motivated to get them done.

Practical Tip: Have a small notebook or digital app where you write your to-do list each morning. Break down tasks into smaller, manageable chunks and prioritize them to focus on the most critical ones first.

5. Breathe In, Breathe Out

Amid the hustle and bustle of our busy lives, it’s easy to forget about the power of a few quiet moments in the morning.

Highly productive people understand this, and they make sure to carve out some time for peace or meditation.

These quiet moments can be as simple as sitting on their porch with a cup of tea, watching the world wake up.

Or it could be a few minutes of deep breathing exercises, helping to calm their mind and prepare for the day ahead.

This practice is not just about relaxation; it’s about reconnecting with oneself and setting a positive tone for the day.

It’s like giving your mind a gentle reminder that while the day might be busy, you’re in control.

Practical Tip: Dedicate 5-10 minutes of your morning to sit in silence, meditate, or practice deep breathing. Create a specific, quiet spot in your home for this, and make it a part of your daily routine.

6. No Screen Time

This one is a game-changer for me and many other productive people. Instead of reaching for their phones or laptops first thing in the morning, they hold off on screen time.

I used to start my day by scrolling through emails and social media, but I realized it often left me feeling overwhelmed before the day even properly began.

So I decided to switch things up and delay my screen time.

Now, I take the first hour of my day as a “tech-free” time. This allows me to start my day more peacefully, without the stress of emails or the distractions of social media.

Instead, I use this time to focus on my morning routine—having a healthy breakfast, planning my day, and even squeezing in some exercise.

Trust me, it’s not easy to resist the allure of that blinking notification light. But give it a try, even just for a week, and see how it changes your mornings. You might be surprised at how much more focused and calm you’ll feel!

Practical Tip: Use an alarm clock instead of your phone to wake up, and keep your phone in another room or on airplane mode for the first hour of your day. Engage in other activities like reading, planning, or exercising to start your day.

7. Keep Learning

Highly productive people are always learning, and it’s not because they’re some super-geniuses or something. It’s because they make it a priority.

Let me tell you, nobody is born with an insatiable curiosity or a love for learning new things. It’s a habit that you cultivate over time.

Productive people dedicate a slice of their morning to absorb something new – be it a chapter from a book, a podcast episode, or even a how-to YouTube video.

Some days, they might be learning about astrophysics, and other days, it could be as simple as a new recipe or a gardening tip. The point is to keep their minds sharp and open to new ideas.

So, no matter how busy you think you are, remember that there’s always room to learn something new.

It doesn’t have to be something grand or complicated; even the simplest things can open up your mind in ways you never thought possible!

Practical Tip: Pick a book, podcast, or educational video the night before that you will spend 20-30 minutes on each morning. Make this a habit to stimulate your mind and inspire creativity for the day.

8. Family Matters

People who get a lot done know that being busy isn’t all about work. They make sure to find time for their family and friends, too.

One good habit is starting the day by spending a little time with the people you care about. It could be having breakfast together, talking about the day ahead, or just sharing a laugh.

A long study by Harvard, which went on for 80 years, found that being happy has a lot to do with having good relationships.

So, spending time with family and friends isn’t just nice, it actually makes us happier!

Getting a lot done in a day isn’t just about work. It’s also about taking care of our relationships with family and friends.

Taking a few moments in the morning to connect with your loved ones can set a positive tone for the rest of your day. 

Practical Tip: Dedicate a portion of your morning to connect with family. It could be a shared breakfast, a short family walk, or a chat over coffee. Make it a point to discuss positive topics to start the day on a good note. 

9. Count Blessings

One thing I’ve noticed about highly productive people is that they often start their day on a positive note by practicing gratitude.

I’ve started doing this too, and let me tell you, it’s been a game changer. Each morning, I take a few moments to jot down or think about things I’m grateful for.

It could be something as simple as a good cup of coffee, a conversation with a friend, or even the sunrise.

Starting the day by acknowledging the good in my life shifts my focus from what’s going wrong to what’s going right. And trust me, even on bad days, there’s always something to be grateful for.

Practical Tip: Keep a gratitude journal by your bedside. Every morning, jot down three things you’re grateful for. They can be big or small, but focusing on positive aspects can help set a positive mindset for the day.

10. Jump Right In

Procrastination is the enemy of productivity. Super productive people know this, and they don’t beat around the bush.

Once their morning routine is out of the way, they dive straight into their most important task for the day.

They don’t wait for “the perfect moment” or until they “feel like it”. They just get started. And honestly, that’s often the hardest part – taking that first step.

So, if you’re serious about getting more done, then stop waiting. Jump in headfirst and tackle your biggest task first thing.

The sense of accomplishment you’ll feel will set an amazing tone for the rest of your day.

Practical Tip: Identify the most crucial task for your day the night before. Avoid overthinking and start working on it as soon as you’ve completed your morning routine. Avoid distractions, and focus solely on this task until it’s completed.


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Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder, and editor of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 15 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. Check out my latest book on the Hidden Secrets of Buddhism and How it Saved My Life. If you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Facebook or Twitter.

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