8 morning habits that successful people always practice (even when they’re tired) 

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There’s a significant difference between just getting through your morning and truly beginning your day with purpose.

That difference? It boils down to habits. Successful people realize that effective morning habits set the tone for the rest of their day, even when they’re battling fatigue.

These rituals aren’t just about getting up early or chugging coffee. It’s about starting the day with intention and carving out time for things that matter most.

I’ve studied and practiced many of these habits. And I’ve found that they genuinely make a difference.

In this article, I’ll share 8 morning habits successful people swear by, even when they’re tired. These are strategies you can incorporate into your routine to help you start your day off right.

1) Mindful mornings

In the world of success, the way you start your morning can set the tone for the rest of your day.

Many successful people swear by the practice of mindfulness as a morning ritual. It’s not just about sitting still and meditating, though that certainly can be a part of it. Mindfulness is about starting your day with intention and clarity, even when you’re tired.

Incorporating mindfulness into your morning routine doesn’t have to be complicated. It could be as simple as taking five minutes to sit quietly with your cup of coffee, focusing on the sensations of the warmth in your hands and the taste on your tongue. Or it could involve a short walk outside, paying attention to the sound of birds chirping or leaves rustling.

The point is to be present in the moment and start your day with a clear mind. This practice can help reduce stress and improve focus, setting you up for a more successful day.

Remember, just like any other habit, it might take some time before it becomes second nature. But stick with it – the benefits are worth it. And as I’ve experienced personally and seen in countless others, mindful mornings really do make a difference.

2) Gratitude practice

Another habit that many successful people incorporate into their morning routine is practicing gratitude. Even when they’re feeling tired or overwhelmed, they take a moment to reflect on what they are thankful for.

Gratitude isn’t just a feel-good exercise. It’s a powerful tool that can shift your mindset from focusing on what’s wrong to appreciating what’s right. This positive perspective can carry through the day, making challenges easier to handle and enhancing overall happiness.

Personally, as I savor my morning cup of tea, I pause to express gratitude for the simple pleasures in life. It could be the warmth of the sun, a good book I’m reading or even the refreshing taste of the tea itself.

The words of Thich Nhat Hanh, a renowned Buddhist monk, come to mind: “Waking up this morning, I smile. Twenty-four brand new hours are before me. I vow to live fully in each moment and to look at all beings with eyes of compassion.”

Incorporating gratitude into your morning routine doesn’t have to be grand or time-consuming. Just a few moments of reflection can make a significant difference in your outlook and your day.

3) Embracing imperfections

Success isn’t about being perfect. It’s about constantly learning, evolving and growing. And that starts with acknowledging our imperfections.

Many successful people begin their day by embracing their flaws and accepting that they won’t get everything right. This isn’t an admission of defeat, but rather an empowering act of self-acceptance that fosters growth.

In Buddhism, there is a concept called “mushotoku,” which roughly translates to “without profit.” This principle encourages us to perform actions without expecting any reward or perfection. Practicing mushotoku in the morning can be as simple as acknowledging your mistakes from the previous day and resolving to learn from them.

We all have flaws. We all make mistakes. But it’s how we respond to these imperfections that shapes our success.

As you start your day, remember: It’s okay not to have it all figured out. It’s okay to be a work in progress. In fact, it’s in this raw and honest state that we often find our greatest potential for growth and success.

4) Mindful movement

Successful people understand the importance of a healthy body for a healthy mind. Even when they’re tired, many incorporate some form of mindful movement into their morning routine.

This isn’t necessarily about intense workouts or hitting the gym. It’s about connecting with your body and paying attention to how it feels.

Mindful movement can be as simple as stretching for a few minutes, going for a brisk walk, or practicing yoga. The key is to focus on the movement itself, the sensation of your muscles working, your breath synchronizing with each move.

Mindfulness expert Jon Kabat-Zinn once said, “Mindfulness is a way of befriending ourselves and our experience.” By adding mindful movement to your morning routine, you’re not just jump-starting your day with energy. You’re also fostering self-awareness and grounding yourself for the day ahead.

It’s not about how intense your activity is. It’s about being present in the moment and starting your day with a connection to your physical self. This habit can help you navigate the day with more focus, clarity, and resilience, no matter what comes your way.

5) Nurturing the mind

Just as physical exercise keeps our bodies fit, mental exercise keeps our minds sharp. Successful people understand this, and that’s why they incorporate cognitive activities into their morning routines.

This could involve reading a book, writing in a journal, or spending a few quiet moments in contemplation. The key is to engage your mind in a way that challenges you and encourages growth.

Personally, I like to begin my day by reading a chapter or two from a thought-provoking book. It’s my way of waking up my mind and setting a positive tone for the day.

In fact, many of the insights I share in my own book, “Hidden Secrets of Buddhism: How To Live With Maximum Impact and Minimum Ego”, come from these early morning reading sessions.

The idea is to fuel your mind with knowledge and inspiration first thing in the morning. This habit not only enhances cognitive function but also sets a productive and positive tone for the rest of the day.

6) Embracing silence

Our days are often filled with noise – from the buzzing of our alarms to the constant hum of technology and chatter. But for many successful people, their mornings begin with embracing silence.

Silence is more than just the absence of noise. It’s a space for reflection, introspection, and peace. It’s a chance to connect with your inner self before the demands of the day take over.

In both Buddhism and mindfulness practice, silence is revered as a pathway to deeper understanding and clarity. It allows us to observe our thoughts and emotions without judgment or distraction.

Even when we’re tired, carving out a few moments of silence in the morning can be incredibly powerful. It’s not always comfortable – our minds tend to resist stillness. But in this silent space, we often find clarity and insights that can guide us throughout the day.

Tomorrow morning, before you reach for your phone or start your daily tasks, try sitting in silence for a few minutes. You might be surprised by what you discover in the quiet.

7) Setting intentions

Successful people don’t leave their day to chance. They start their mornings by setting clear intentions for what they want to achieve.

Setting intentions isn’t about creating a rigid to-do list. It’s about aligning your actions with your values and goals. It’s about deciding how you want to show up in the world, how you want to feel, and what you want to contribute.

Buddhist teacher Pema Chodron once said, “You are the sky. Everything else – it’s just the weather.” This quote reminds us that while we can’t control everything that happens in our day, we can control how we respond.

Even when you’re tired, taking a few minutes each morning to set your intentions can help guide your actions and keep you focused on what truly matters. It’s a powerful practice that can transform not just your day, but your entire life.

8) Doing less

In a world that often glorifies busyness, this may seem counterintuitive. But many successful people have discovered the power of doing less.

This doesn’t mean being lazy or unproductive. Quite the opposite. It’s about focusing on what truly matters and letting go of the rest.

Mindfulness teaches us to be fully present in each moment, rather than rushing through tasks just to cross them off a list. When we slow down and do less, we create space for quality over quantity.

Starting your morning with this mindset can drastically reduce stress and increase productivity. Instead of trying to do everything, choose a few important tasks and commit to doing them well.

Doing less is not about achieving less. It’s about creating more space for what truly matters, leading to greater satisfaction and success in the long run.

In conclusion, successful people understand the power a morning routine holds in setting the tone for the rest of the day. Even when they’re tired, they stick to these habits because they provide a foundation for success.

From practicing mindfulness and gratitude, to setting intentions and embracing silence, each of these habits offers its unique benefits. And remember, it’s not about perfection but progress. Start small and over time, these habits can become a natural part of your morning routine.

If you’re interested in learning more about mindfulness and Buddhism, I invite you to check out my book, “Hidden Secrets of Buddhism: How To Live With Maximum Impact and Minimum Ego”. It’s packed with insights and practical tips to help you live a more mindful and fulfilling life.

Remember, every morning is a fresh start, an opportunity to set the tone for a successful day. So make the most of it.

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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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