People who consistently achieve their goals never waste time on these 5 things in the morning

Ask anyone from Jennifer Anniston to Richard Branson and Bill Gates: the thing that sets them up for success and achieving their goals is what they do at the crack of dawn. 

When we think of morning rituals, we think of coffee, maybe the gym, turning the news on, and scrolling social media. Basically wash, rinse, and repeat. 

But the same old, same old, invites more of the same old.

Morning rituals should be invigorating and self-tailored, self-care practices. For one person this can mean mediating and journaling; for another, it can be enjoying a steaming cup of invigorating mushroom coffee as they walk the neighborhood with their dog.

Early morning rising and rituals tend to put a lot of people off because they associate it with implementing rigid rules and structures. 

This writer behind the well-being site, Gala Darling, says that our mornings should have no rules. Its only purpose should be to a) “juice ourselves up,” and b) “focus on ourselves and not on other people” (like Instagram). 

“Give yourself the gift of flexibility, exercise your spontaneity muscles, and test out your intuition,” she says. 

But how do we do this? Well, first we have to let go of these five morning time-wasters. 

1) They refuse to put their alarm on snooze

We are all guilty of hitting the snooze button on the alarm in the mornings—particularly if you don’t want to face freezing cold winter mornings like those in Canada where I live. 

Successful people and those determined to get cracking on their goals can’t wait to start their day. 

They also know that hitting the snooze button regularly can make you feel more tired and disrupt your body’s internal clock, says Marygrace Taylor from Amerisleep

“[This can] lead to sleep problems and potential health issues.”

Not only are you wasting precious minutes of your day, forcing yourself to rush through your morning rituals, you’ll also feel frazzled and stressed, so you won’t be in the right frame of mind to come up with new ideas and insights to make headway on your goals. 

I know this for a fact: it’s always when I’m in a positive, optimistic, and relaxed state of mind that a new idea for a story will “suddenly” come to me.

Taylor says that instead of snoozing, establish a regular bedtime, get enough exercise, avoid caffeine and screen time before bed. 

“And create a comfortable sleep environment. If you have chronic sleep issues, consult a doctor for help.”

And just get out of bed, she stresses. 

“Instead of giving into temptation and hitting snooze, resist the temptation and get out of bed when your alarm goes off to avoid the groggy feeling associated with sleep inertia.”

2) They also don’t waste time scrolling the minute they wake up

I think the majority of us are guilty of reaching for our phones before our feet even hit the floor. 

We’ll start checking emails, scrolling social media, and scanning the news. 

While this can seemingly make us more productive, we’re missing out on tapping into our subconscious mind and manifesting our goals and dreams into reality. 

“When you first wake up in the morning, your brain switches from delta waves, which occur in a deep sleep state, to theta waves, which occur during a sort of daydreamy state,” says empowerment psychologist Jai Rai who specializes in the neuroscience of mental health. 

“The brain then moves to produce alpha waves when you are awake but are relaxed and not processing much information.”

Rai says that by grabbing your phone first thing and immediately diving into the online world, you are forcing your body to skip the important theta and alpha stages and go straight from the delta stage to being wide awake and alert (also known as the beta state). 

[The] theta state is an ideal time to tap into your subconscious mind to visualize what you want and help your brain drive your actions forward toward achieving your vision.”

So stop priming your brain for distraction, he says. 

“Seeing or reading something negative first thing in the morning can trigger your stress response and put you on edge for the rest of the day.”

Julie Morgenstern wrote a whole book about this habit aptly called, Never Check Email In The Morning. 

“There is very little that cannot wait a minimum of 59 minutes.”

Enough said. 

3) They won’t waste their energy on anything that isn’t good for their body, mind, and soul 

In an interview with Well and Good,, Friends alum Jennifer Anniston said that she starts her morning anywhere from 4:30AM(!) and 9:00AM. 

She begins with a cup of hot water and lemon water, followed by a skincare routine, meditation, a breakfast smoothie and then a workout (or multiple workouts). 

I admit that I don’t start my mornings before 8:00AM and I don’t work out in the mornings either (my treadmill time is in the evenings). But, I do drink hot lemon water, have a smoothie (and coffee I’m not ashamed to admit), and do my skincare routine. 

I find this self-care routine sets me up for getting on task with my goals throughout my day. 

4) They refuse to rush out the door without spending time with those closest to them 

You would think that the first thing someone like Richard Branson did with their day was catch up on world news. 

The British business magnate (who goes on vacation with the likes of former United States President Barack Obama), says that the most important part of his morning is spending time with his family. 

“Exercise and family time put me in a great frame of mind to get down to business,” he says. 

Starting the day off with your support system—the people who love you and are just as excited about your goals as you are, is the best motivation in the world. 

5) They are adamant about not wasting their mornings catching up on chores from the night before 

I’m not a morning person by nature, so how my morning goes tends to set off a chain reaction for the rest of the day. 

So first thing in the morning when I come down to the kitchen, the last thing I want to see is a stack of dirty dishes in the sink left over from the night before.

Or a full garbage that wasn’t taken out. Or a stack of junk mail laying on the coffee table. You get the picture. 

I am adamant about not wasting my mornings catching up on things that should have been taken care of the day or night before. 

I find that when I do that, I’m basically catching up for the rest of the day and nothing new or fruitful happens. That stagnant energy of the morning keeps me in somewhat of a rut throughout the day. 

Goal-oriented people have things to do and the last thing they want to do is catch up on the drudgery of the day before during their mornings. 

Make your mornings count

We’ll leave you with these parting words from entrepreneur Tim Ferriss, who has asked hundreds of people about their morning rituals: “If you win the morning, you win the day.”

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