Rise and shine to success

I’ve heard that for some of the most successful people in our world, people like Oprah, Obama, Sir Richard Branson, rising early is the key to success. In fact, some studies have shown that 90% of executives wake up before 6am on weekdays, and nearly 50% of self-made millionaires wake up at least three hours before their workday begins!

I was intrigued. What if I tried this? Could I do it? Could I fight the urge to hit snooze 10 times before I actually started my day? Intuitively, something was telling me that I wasn’t getting the most out of my day. I wasn’t flaking but I wasn’t peaking either. I was status quo. I knew I needed to change to achieve a productive edge.

Reading Hal Elrod’s ‘Miracle Morning’, turned out to be a game changer! He preaches the SAVERS principle. In summary, you are to wake up an hour earlier than usual and practice activities; Silence, Affirmations, Visualisation, Exercise, Reading, and Scribing. Sounds like a lot right? Nevertheless, I committed to waking 5:30am everyday (yes, even on weekends!) to test his theory. Here’s what I discovered.

How’s the serenity?

No longer was I racing out the door to dash to work. I woke with a sense of calm knowing I had time on my hands. A silent coffee, sitting outside, watching the sunrise, set a beautiful tone for the day. Waking to beauty, also cultivated an incredible sense of gratitude.

Hello endorphins!

Swimming for half an hour everyday not only ignited the body, mind and soul, but gave me time to set up my day. I got a head start, before distractions and obligations arised. I would set a mantra as I swam up and back. It became meditative and everyday, I got the after workout buzz, and I floated into work.

Straight to the drivers seat

Everything felt in order. I felt a sense of control. I was playing in offence and no longer reactive. Everything began to flow. Decision making was clearer as I set intentions, focused, visualised and compartmentalised all areas of my life. Things became achievable not daunting.

The mind switch

I cultivated a growth mindset. Scribing the previous days events gave time to release, reflect and then project forward. Writing down events and progress brings an intense sense of moving forward, acknowledging the little and big wins on the way.

A happy little Vegemite

Being an early bird definitely boosts the mood. You feel calm, collected, and accomplished. When you wake up early, you have more time for planning, strategic thinking, and getting organised. My days were more productive and I was definitely thinking sharper with a skip in my step! You also seem to have more time, allowing you to mindfully connect with others which absolutely feeds the soul!

A coupla cons

The earlier you get up, the earlier you seem to go to bed. Sometimes, I’d be going to bed before the sun! But you’re virtually flipping your day on its head, and getting your usual night time activities done in the morning. It’s a change in mindset and it takes time to adjust.

This also may not suit everybody for whatever reasons, family, work, health. But it’s also not a fixed idea. It’s a theory that can be tailored to whatever works for you.

The verdict

Yes, I’m officially a convert. In fact, I’m writing this at 4:30am. Millions of super people can’t all be wrong. If it could work for your lifestyle, even adding just a couple of the practices, I say go for it, stick with it and the benefits have the potential to be life changing.

Disclaimer – Sometimes you think everyone is up when you are. Turns out their not. My biggest lesson is to not contact people at 5am just to chat!

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