9 things high-achievers always do before 8 am

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There’s a striking difference between people who are just successful and those who are high-achievers.

The difference lies in how they start their day. High-achievers have a strategy to squeeze every drop of productivity out of their mornings, usually before most of us hit the snooze button for the first time.

They know that the key to a successful day begins long before 8 am, and they have specific things they always do to ensure they’re primed for success.

Curious about what these morning rituals are?

Here are nine things high-achievers always do before 8 am. 

1) They wake up early

It’s not rocket science. High-achievers are known for their early rising habits.

You’d be hard-pressed to find a successful person who hits the snooze button repeatedly. Instead, they’re up and about when the sky is still dark, long before the rest of the world begins to stir.

This isn’t just about beating the sun. It’s about carving out uninterrupted time for themselves, a quiet sanctuary before the demands of the day kick in.

It’s their secret window of opportunity to plan, reflect, and work towards their goals without any distractions.

It’s not about sacrificing sleep. High-achievers understand the importance of rest and ensure they get enough of it – they just choose to hit the hay earlier rather than waking up late.

If you want to join the ranks of these high-achievers, consider setting your alarm a bit earlier and resist the allure of that snooze button.

2) They prioritize physical activity

I can personally attest to this one.

A few years ago, I found myself stuck in a rut. I was constantly tired, stressed, and struggling to focus on my work. It was hard for me to find motivation, even for tasks I usually enjoyed.

Then a friend, a successful entrepreneur, shared his secret with me – he started every day with a workout. Intrigued, and desperate for a change, I decided to give it a try.

I swapped my morning social media scroll for a 30-minute jog and the difference was astounding. Not only did it give me a burst of energy to start the day, but it also provided me some much-needed time to clear my head and mentally prepare for the day ahead.

Now, it’s become an integral part of my morning routine. Whether it’s a jog, yoga session or even a quick set of push-ups, starting the day with some form of physical activity helps me feel more energized, focused and ready to tackle whatever comes my way.

High-achievers understand the benefits of regular exercise – it’s not just about physical health but mental clarity too.

If you want to follow in their footsteps, consider incorporating some form of physical activity into your mornings.

3) They nourish their bodies

Breakfast is often called the most important meal of the day, and high-achievers take this to heart.

The brain is a demanding organ, using up to 20% of the body’s total energy. That’s why starting the day with a nutrient-rich meal is crucial to maintaining focus and productivity throughout the day.

High-achievers understand this link between nutrition and performance.

They don’t just grab a coffee and run out the door. Instead, they take time to fuel their bodies with a balanced breakfast that typically includes proteins, whole grains, and fruits to ensure they have the energy to keep going.

4) They plan their day

High-achievers don’t just stumble into success – they plan for it.

Every morning, they take time to map out their day. They set clear goals, prioritize tasks, and create a structured timetable. This isn’t just about ticking off tasks on a to-do list, but strategically planning their time to maximize productivity.

They understand that time is a non-renewable resource and treating it with respect is key to achieving their goals.

By having a clear plan, they minimize the risk of getting sidetracked or overwhelmed.

A few minutes spent on strategic planning each morning can save you hours of aimless wandering later in the day.

5) They practice gratitude

It may seem surprising, but many high-achievers begin their day with a moment of gratitude.

Instead of diving straight into work or worries, they take a moment to appreciate what they have. This could be writing in a gratitude journal, silently reflecting on their blessings, or even sharing their appreciation with loved ones.

This simple practice sets a positive tone for the day and helps them maintain a healthy perspective, even when challenges arise. It’s a reminder that success isn’t just about achieving more, but also appreciating what you already have.

If you’re looking to cultivate a high-achiever’s mindset, consider starting your day with a dose of gratitude. It’s a small habit that can make a big difference.

6) They connect with their loved ones

It’s a common misconception that high-achievers are too busy for personal connections. The truth is, they value their relationships and make them a priority.

Before the hustle and bustle of the day begins, they take time to connect with their loved ones. It could be sharing breakfast with their family, a quick phone call to a dear friend, or even a morning walk with their dog.

These moments of connection ground them and serve as a reminder of what’s truly important in life. The support and love from their relationships fuel them to face the challenges of the day.

Success isn’t just about professional achievements. It also involves nurturing personal relationships. Make time in your morning routine to connect with those who matter most to you.

7) They make time for self-reflection

A few years back, in the midst of juggling a demanding job and family commitments, I found myself feeling lost. It felt like I was just going through the motions without truly living.

That’s when I stumbled upon the practice of morning reflection. I started setting aside a few minutes each morning to sit quietly with my thoughts, reflect on my actions, and realign with my goals and values.

This practice was transformative. It helped me regain control over my life and gave me a sense of purpose. It became a sacred time for me to connect with myself, away from the noise and demands of the outside world.

High-achievers often practice self-reflection as part of their morning routine. It helps them stay focused on their goals, learn from their mistakes, and continually grow both personally and professionally.

Consider making space in your mornings for self-reflection. It might just be the key to finding clarity and purpose in your own life.

8) They educate themselves

High-achievers are lifelong learners. They understand that to stay ahead, they need to continually expand their knowledge and skills.

And what better time to do this than in the quiet of the morning? They might read a chapter of a book, listen to a podcast, or watch an educational video – all before most of us have had our first sip of coffee.

They use this time not only to learn about their field of work but also about other areas that interest them. This multidisciplinary approach helps them think out of the box and come up with innovative solutions.

If you want to start your day like a high-achiever, consider incorporating some form of learning into your morning routine. It’s an investment that will pay off in the long run.

9) They practice mindfulness

In our fast-paced world, it’s easy to get caught up in the rush and forget to live in the moment. High-achievers understand that true success is not just about getting things done but also about being present.

So, they practice mindfulness. This could be through meditation, deep breathing exercises, or simply sitting quietly with a cup of tea.

This practice helps them stay focused, calm, and fully engaged in the present moment.

Mindfulness has been linked to numerous benefits, from increased productivity and creativity to decreased stress and anxiety. It’s not just a buzzword but a powerful tool for success.

If you want to reap the benefits of mindfulness like the high-achievers do, consider incorporating it into your morning routine.

It’s a simple practice that can have profound effects on your day and your life.

The essence: It’s about intentionality

The heart of high-achievement lies in the realm of intentionality.

Each action, each decision, and each habit is intentionally chosen and deliberately practiced. This isn’t about luck or natural talent, but about making conscious choices to maximize potential.

The morning routines of high-achievers may vary in specifics, but they all share a common thread – intentionality. They understand that how they start their morning can set the tone for the rest of their day.

Whether it’s waking up early, exercising, planning their day, or practicing gratitude, every action is designed to prime them for success.

Remember, high-achievement isn’t an exclusive club. It’s accessible to anyone willing to be intentional with their time and habits.

So as you reflect on these nine things high-achievers do before 8 am, ask yourself: what intentional steps can you take towards becoming a high-achiever? The power to shape your mornings, and in turn your life, lies in your hands.

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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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