Most everyone who knows me knows that I like to start almost every day with an early morning workout. But what many people don’t know is that my daily workout is about so much more than just my physical well-being. In fact, I would say that the physical benefits of daily exercise are only 50% of the equation. The other 50% is what that workout does for my mind…and no I am not talking about the quick high you get from the endorphins after you exercise. It goes so far beyond that – it’s about the clarity.
Think about it for a minute. Have you ever noticed that the first 30 minutes of your day can set the tone for your entire day? Picture this: You wake up 15 minutes late because you hit snooze one too many times. You take a quick shower, burn your toast, spill coffee on your clean shirt, yell at the kids (because you are late) and get stuck in rush hour traffic – only to discover that you left your laptop at home. What kind of tone does that set for your day? How many times have you had a morning like that and then said to yourself, “Wow this is going to be a great day!” It doesn’t happen. You’ve set the tone for the entire day before you even left home, because you were behind schedule before your feet even hit the floor.
The reality of life is that there are so many things in our day-to-day routine that we can’t control – the weather, the traffic or the toaster being on the fritz and burning your toast, but you can control how you start each and every day. So for me, my morning workout is my buffer – a buffer between the stresses of the previous day and the start of a new day. It allows me to start my day at my pace and on my own terms, and gives me time to mentally prepare for the day ahead. It doesn’t have to be a workout. Perhaps it’s quiet time reading or meditating, or it could be as simple as setting your alarm 15 minutes early and not pressing snooze (that’s the key). It’s really about whatever works for you.
I know many of you reading this are working ACN on a part time basis, which means you have to get good at juggling – juggling your full time job, juggling your family life and juggling ACN on the side. But the simple truth is that you can’t be a master juggler if you don’t have a little clarity in your life. So this is your challenge: Starting tomorrow and for the next five days, resist the urge to snooze just one more time and instead get up 15, 20 or even 30 minutes early. Use that time for yourself, to clear your mind and sort out your day. I can assure you those extra 15 minutes of sleep will be long forgotten (and definitely not worth it) when you are running late and stressed out. Then, at the end of five days, look back and ask yourself how those days were different than the previous ones. I’m willing to bet you had a less stressful week, with even more clarity than ever before.
Each morning is a clean canvas, an opportunity to start fresh – to do something more, different or better than the day before. It’s reality that many people start their day with an alarm blaring in their ears. Being startled from sleep – what a way to wake up! But that blaring alarm shouldn’t be what sets the tone for your day. Stop snoozing and start taking control of how each and every day begins.
Remember, if you aren’t controlling your day, your day will certainly control you.
Until next time,
ACN President and Co-Founder