9 things high-achievers always do in the morning

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How do some people seem to have it all together? 

You know the ones I’m talking about — they’re up early, seem to tackle a day’s work before you’ve had your first coffee, and they’re always in a good mood. 

I’ve always been fascinated by high-achievers, so I did some digging. 

Guess what? Their secret sauce often lies in their morning routine. 

Stick with me, and I’ll share the 9 things high-achievers always do in the morning. You might just find the magic you’ve been looking for to transform your own days.

1) Wake up early

You may have heard of the 5am club, or about great leaders who woke up before the sun.

And to be honest, I used to think that was nonsense. Some of us are early birds and some are night owls, and what should it matter what time you get up?

But really, that was wishful thinking as I hate waking up in the morning.

The truth is, I always feel my best and most productive when I wake up at a reasonable hour. Whenever I wake up late, I have the feeling like half the day is already gone, and then I’m flooded with anxiety about how I’ll get everything done.

On the other hand, getting an early start lets you check off the first few things on your to-do list when the day has barely even started. 

That’s just what you need to rev up your motivation and keep you going throughout the whole day. 

2) Limit screen time

Ever notice how easy it is to lose track of time while scrolling through social media or checking emails first thing in the morning? High-achievers know this trap all too well, and they avoid it like the plague. 

I once met a successful entrepreneur at a conference, and he told me his phone doesn’t even enter his bedroom at night. When he wakes up, the first hour of his day is a “no-screen zone.”

Imagine how freeing that feels, being completely present as you start your day. Your mind gets to roam freely rather than being instantly bombarded with information and notifications. 

You can organize your thoughts for what to do that day, and tune into how you’re feeling and what’s preoccupying you the most.

Even if it’s just the time it takes you to have coffee, take a shower, and get dressed, make sure you give yourself a little digital fast when you start your day. 

3) Eat a healthy breakfast

You’ve probably heard it a thousand times: “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” But how many of us actually take that to heart? 

High-achievers don’t just eat breakfast; they make it a point to eat a *healthy* breakfast. 

Why? Because they understand that what you fuel your body with impacts everything from your energy level to your focus. 

When you start your day with a nourishing meal, you’re sending a clear message: you’re setting yourself up to win. 

This is especially important if you have any health-related goals, such as gaining muscle, losing weight, or lowering your cholesterol. The first meal you eat will set the tone for your food choices the rest of the day, and how you feel about your health progress too.

So take it from the high-achievers: making a healthy breakfast a non-negotiable is a game-changer for your day.

4) Connect with loved ones

One thing that surprised me about high-achievers is that many of them make time for their loved ones in the morning. 

You’d think they’re always on the go, too busy plotting world domination, right? Well, they may be planning big things, but they know the value of connection. 

I remember reading an article about a world-class athlete who starts every day with a 5-minute call to his mom. 

So why is this connection so crucial? For one, it grounds you, reminding you of what’s important before the chaos of the day kicks in. It’s like a mental and emotional hug, giving you warmth and encouragement. 

Whether it’s a quick cuddle with your partner, a breakfast chat with your kids, or even a morning walk with your dog, taking a few moments to connect can make a world of difference. 

It’s a beautiful way to start your day with love and positivity, keeping you in a good mood and, believe it or not, making you more productive.

5) Exercise

You might think exercise is all about the body, but it’s actually a game-changer for your mind too. 

Numerous scientific studies back this up, proving that regular exercise improves cognitive function, enhances mood, and boosts productivity. 

So when high-achievers lace up their sneakers in the morning, they’re not just aiming for a six-pack; they’re tuning up their most vital tool — their brain. 

Now, I know what you might be thinking — “I can barely get through my tasks as it is, how am I supposed to squeeze in a workout?”

Well, you’ll be glad to know that even just 10 minutes of exercise can lead to immediate improvement in cognitive performance and mental focus.

And the boost in productivity you’ll get will more than compensate for that small chunk out of your day. 

6) Plan their day

High-achievers don’t leave their day to chance; they map it out with purpose. I’ve heard countless stories of successful people who swear by their morning planning ritual. 

And no, you don’t need some elaborate system or an expensive planner. Just a piece of paper or even your phone will do. 

Why is this so important? Planning sets the tone for your entire day. It helps you visualize how you’re going to tackle your tasks and goals. It gives you a sense of control and eliminates that daunting feeling of overwhelm.

How you choose to plan your day is up to you — some like to just write a list of things to do, others write it directly into their calendar. 

Just make sure that you’re realistic and don’t pile on 50 tasks. Prioritize what you have planned, and make sure each of them relates directly to one of your goals.

Most importantly, don’t forget to pencil in some “me-time” or breaks to recharge. 

7) Visualize success

What’s the secret sauce that gives high-achievers that extra edge? It’s their ability to see success before it even happens. Yep, I’m talking about visualization

Whether it’s closing a business deal, acing an exam, or nailing a presentation, they’ve already seen it unfold in their mind’s eye. It might sound a bit “out there,” but trust me, there’s solid science behind this.

Visualization is more than daydreaming — it’s like a rehearsal for the brain. Neuroscientific studies have shown that mental practice can be almost as effective as physical practice in improving skills. 

When you visualize, you’re basically programming your brain for success, firing up those same neurons that will be activated when you actually perform the task.

So, want a morning routine that sets you up for a win? Spend a few quiet moments visualizing what you want your day to look like. See it, feel it, believe it. When the time comes, you’ll be ready to turn that vision into reality.

8) Learn something new

High-achievers have this unquenchable thirst for knowledge, and they make sure to sip from that fountain every single morning. 

No, you don’t have to dive into a 300-page book — sometimes it’s as simple as reading an article, listening to a podcast, or even watching a short video on a subject that interests them.

I was particularly inspired by manifestation coach Kathrin Zenkina, who shared on her podcast Manifestation Babe that she always makes sure to nourish her mind as much as she nourishes her body in the morning.

So while she makes her coffee and goes about the tasks that don’t need brain power, she always has a podcast running in the background. 

And it’s clear that she’s a super successful entrepreneur and definitely a high-achiever, so there’s clearly something to this habit!

9) Practice gratitude

Finally, when high-achievers wake up, they’re not just focused on the hustle and bustle ahead; they also take a moment to count their blessings. 

You probably don’t need me to explain that gratitude is a great habit to adopt, since every second social media post already tells you that.

But you might not know yet that the benefits of saying thanks extend past good vibes. 

Research shows that practicing gratitude can actually rewire your brain for happiness and resilience. It shifts your focus away from what you lack or what’s stressing you out, directing it toward the abundance that already exists in your life. 

And this positive outlook is contagious — it spills over into your work, relationships, and overall well-being.

So how can you make this a part of your morning? It’s simple. Take a couple of minutes to jot down three things you’re grateful for. They can be as big as landing your dream job or as small as a hot cup of coffee on a chilly morning. 

You’ll soon realize that this small act of recognition can set a powerful, positive tone for your entire day.

Optimizing your morning for success

Now you know 9 things that high achievers always do in the morning.

Each of these habits is super simple — so simple in fact, that tons of people overlook them.

But now, you know better — and by incorporating them into your morning routine, you can catapult your productivity and success far above the rest.

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Tina Fey

I'm Tina Fey, the founder of the blog Love Connection. I've extremely passionate about sharing relationship advice. I've studied psychology and have my Masters in marital, family, and relationship counseling. I hope with all my heart to help you improve your relationships, and I hope that even if one thing I write helps you, it means more to me than just about anything else in the world. Check out my blog Love Connection, and if you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Twitter

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