Morning routines are overrated.
Every Forbes, Inc, and Business Insider media brand is pumping out article after article about the holy morning routine.
I’ve seen more books published about morning routines in the last two years than in my entire life combined.
How is it that they are just now catching on to the idea that the way you start your day has an impact on the rest of your day?
The real routine you should be focused on, if you want to have a great morning, is your nightly routine.
If a morning routine can make your entire day better, doesn’t it make sense that a nightly routine can make your morning better?
For the record, I’m a believer in having a morning routine — a nightly routine only enhances the morning routine.
THE NIGHTLY ROUTINE FOR HIGH-PERFORMANCE HUSTLERS
“A great day starts the night before.”
There’s absolutely nothing revolutionary about this simple, three-step routine.
But it’s the truth. It works for me.
Maybe you’ll benefit, as well.
All I ask is that you do it before you write it off.
Step 1: Write your daily action list
That’s right, a good ol’ fashioned to-do list.
I’m a big fan of to-do lists and it’s probably the most effective productivity tool for me. I’ve been using them my entire life.
How I use a to-do list has changed a lot over the years, though.
For one, I call it an “action list” now.
I don’t write out goals or things I’d like to do. I write specific actions I’m going to take.
Plus, “action list” sounds better, don’t you agree?
I use my daily action list for:
- Planning tasks
- Scheduling out my day
- Tracking my habits
- Logging ideas and notes
- Tracking nootropics (and other substances) I’m currently testing
Each night I write out my action list, allowing my mind to focus on a specific gameplan.
When I wake up, I don’t have to spend a second thinking about how I’m going to prioritize my day or what needs to get done and what doesn’t.
I just go!
Eliminating those decisions and anxieties saves me from using precious willpower and allows me to direct more energy towards getting things done.
Any to-do list app or notebook will work.
I’m very particular about things and I have a certain type of daily planner I like best.
Like I said, do whatever works for you.
Step 2: Prepare your coffee
A photo posted by KW Stout (@kw_stout) on
I don’t know about you, but I love coffee.
Black and steamy.
There’s no better way to get out of bed than with the smell of fresh roasted coffee in the air.
That’s why I prepare my coffee maker the night before with an alarm set for the coffee to brew at 5 am.
I’m not a huge fan of my current coffee maker, so I’m not going to recommend it.
However, I had one for years that I used throughout college that was awesome. It has a grinder built-in so the coffee was super fresh and delicious.
The grinder was kind of loud, which made for the perfect alarm clock.
You’re probably wondering why I don’t just brew the coffee first thing in the morning.
I’ll tell you.
I find it much easier to slip back into bed after my alarm goes off when I know there isn’t coffee waiting on me downstairs.
Plus, making coffee throws off my whole morning routine and adds 10-15 minutes to my jump on the day.
With my action list planned and coffee waiting on me, my mind is right and I know I only have to make it to the coffee and I’m in the clear.
But there’s still one more step to make it as easy as possible to start my day off right…
Step 3: Lay out your gym/work clothes
Like I said in this article about waking up early, your mind will play tricks on you when you first get out of bed.
You’ll start rationalizing over the weakest excuses.
The purpose of my nightly routine is to eliminate all possible excuses so you have no choice but to stay awake and attack the day.
By laying out my gym clothes, I don’t even have to use my brain for the first 30 minutes of my day.
My action list is planned, the coffee is waiting on me, and I just turned off the alarm on my phone that was sitting on my folded gym clothes.
What could I possibly say to myself?
If I want to get my full workout completed in about an hour, I have to get to the gym early.
Otherwise, it fills up and I might get delayed or have to substitute exercises.
When I have the gym to myself, I get in and crush my workout, then I leave as all the alarm-snoozers are filling in.
The momentum I build in the gym carries over into my workday, causing my clients to question how many employees I have. (Zero)
As a result of my nightly routine — I simply can’t go back to bed and have any level of self-respect.
All excuses have been prevented.
The work has already been done.
I don’t even have to think at all.
I run on 100% autopilot for the first three hours of my day.
My morning routine springboards my productivity for the day and that equates to more work done, more money in my pockets, and more time invested in HMP.
But it all starts the night before.
P.S. If you think my nightly routine is stupid, you’d really hate reading my book — it makes this routine extremely easy to follow.
99 Habits For Those Who Want it All
This FREE guide includes 99 action steps to get in shape, feel excited to start the day, and accomplish more in less time!
What do you think? Do you agree, disagree or have any thoughts to add? Let me know in the comments below.
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