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7 Ways Experts Ensure a World-Class Morning Routine

7 Ways Experts Ensure a World-Class Morning Routine

Morning routines of the world’s most successful people have been studied time and time again, as if it is the secret blueprint to all wealth and happiness one could ever want. While those are high shooting ambitions, it can certainly be attributed that morning routines have an insanely high impact on our functionality throughout the day. Starting the day off right, whatever that may be for you, is going to be the difference between yelling in traffic or dancing to the new Beyonce jam playing on the radio.

I am not one to know, but I can imagine even Beyonce has a systematic approach to her mornings.

Morning routines have been highlighted for good reason. With a simple search on Google, tips and tricks can be found all across the web. Unfortunately, they are tips and tricks for someone else, and it leaves you wondering what works for you, testing various strategies and ultimately going back to the alarm hammering mornings we know so well from Hollywood movies.

There is indeed one takeaway worth capturing, though; a universal trait. Something applicable to the stars, the hard working college student, or anyone, really. It doesn’t matter who you are, what you do in the morning, or what you do in the day. This is the one thing that is present in the lives of everyone kicking butt in their day.

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They start the day in control.

There is no perfect habit, as each individual has a different makeup, different sciences, and different experiences that have shaped us.

We all know this. This is nothing new.

So how do you find what might work for you?

We have established that the world’s most successful leaders start each day in control. But for those who are curious, this is because to start the day in a hurry or on your phone is on another person’s terms. Reading a text, flipping through sports, being late, or starting rushed means all of your first movements are at someone else’s beck and call. Your mind is not calm, and you have hardly laid a foundation for yourself.

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We can all try to be Superman or Superwoman, but nobody is the exception. Protect your morning; fight the notifications or the urge to sleep late.

Based on research from some of the world’s top leaders, such as Mark Zuckerberg, Tim Ferriss, Ezra Klein, and much more, these are the seven most critical items you can add to your morning routine.

1. Wake up early

World leaders say it helps you accomplish what you want before the world gets going. There is always a distraction in the evening, but you can own your morning.

2. Sleep with your phone on airplane mode

Texts, news alerts, sports updates, and emails are draining and start your day on someone else’s time. Shutting things off lets you be in control of your day.

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3. Meditate

Many executives cannot go without meditation as it grants focus, control, and poise for the entire day.

4. Read

The morning is when we are most focused. Executives everywhere see this as their chance to hone some skills and always continue growing.

5. Go to the Gym

Exercising, whether you go to the gym or work out at home, releases endorphins, keeps you healthy, and gives you engergy, guaranteeing a good start to the day.

6. Take a Cold Shower

Experts say this chilling experience will help you start your day feeling like a champion. Additionally, there are many benefits to going cold.

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7. Write

Authors and influencers say this is their only time to capture their purest thoughts of the day.

If you are curious how you can fit all of this in before work at 9:00 AM, remember that you don’t have to do all of them. Pick one, two, or as many as you want, but give it a try!

More by this author

Andrew Frawley

Runs Content & Growth at SherpaDesk

morning-routine-cup-of-coffee 7 Ways Experts Ensure a World-Class Morning Routine

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

You go to the gym to train your muscles. You run outside or go for hikes to train your endurance. Or, maybe you do neither of those, but still wish you exercised more.

Well, here is how to train one of the most important parts of your body: your brain.

When you train your brain, you will:

  • Avoid embarrassing situations. You remember his face, but what was his name?
  • Be a faster learner in all sorts of different skills. No problem for you to pick up a new language or new management skill.
  • Avoid diseases that hit as you get older. Alzheimer’s will not be affecting you.

So how to train your brain and improve your cognitive skills?

1. Work your memory

Twyla Tharp, a NYC-based renowned choreographer has come up with the following memory workout:

When she watches one of her performances, she tries to remember the first twelve to fourteen corrections she wants to discuss with her cast without writing them down.

If you think this is anything less than a feat, then think again. In her book The Creative Habit she says that most people cannot remember more than three.

The practice of both remembering events or things and then discussing them with others has actually been supported by brain fitness studies.

Memory activities that engage all levels of brain operation—receiving, remembering and thinking—help to improve the function of the brain.

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Now, you may not have dancers to correct, but you may be required to give feedback on a presentation, or your friends may ask you what interesting things you saw at the museum. These are great opportunities to practically train your brain by flexing your memory muscles.

What is the simplest way to help yourself remember what you see? Repetition.

For example, say you just met someone new:

“Hi, my name is George”

Don’t just respond with, “Nice to meet you”. Instead, say, “Nice to meet you George.”

Got it? Good.

2. Do something different repeatedly

By actually doing something new over and over again, your brain wires new pathways that help you do this new thing better and faster.

Think back to when you were three years old. You surely were strong enough to hold a knife and a fork just fine. Yet, when you were eating all by yourself, you were creating a mess.

It was not a matter of strength, you see. It was a matter of cultivating more and better neural pathways that would help you eat by yourself just like an adult does.

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And guess what? With enough repetition you made that happen!

But how does this apply to your life right now?

Say you are a procrastinator. The more you don’t procrastinate, the more you teach your brain not to wait for the last minute to make things happen.

Now, you might be thinking “Duh, if only not procrastinating could be that easy!”

Well, it can be. By doing something really small, that you wouldn’t normally do, but is in the direction of getting that task done, you will start creating those new precious neural pathways.

So if you have been postponing organizing your desk, just take one paper and put in its right place. Or, you can go even smaller. Look at one piece of paper and decide where to put it: Trash? Right cabinet? Another room? Give it to someone?

You don’t actually need to clean up that paper; you only need to decide what you need to do with it.

That’s how small you can start. And yet, those neural pathways are still being built. Gradually, you will transform yourself from a procrastinator to an in-the-moment action taker.

3. Learn something new

It might sound obvious, but the more you use your brain, the better its going to perform for you.

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For example, learning a new instrument improves your skill of translating something you see (sheet music) to something you actually do (playing the instrument).

Learning a new language exposes your brain to a different way of thinking, a different way of expressing yourself.

You can even literally take it a step further, and learn how to dance. Studies indicate that learning to dance helps seniors avoid Alzheimer’s. Not bad, huh?

4. Follow a brain training program

The Internet world can help you improve your brain function while lazily sitting on your couch. A clinically proven program like BrainHQ can help you improve your memory, or think faster, by just following their brain training exercises.

5. Work your body

You knew this one was coming didn’t you? Yes indeed, exercise does not just work your body; it also improves the fitness of your brain.

Even briefly exercising for 20 minutes facilitates information processing and memory functions. But it’s not just that–exercise actually helps your brain create those new neural connections faster. You will learn faster, your alertness level will increase, and you get all that by moving your body.

Now, if you are not already a regular exerciser, and already feel guilty that you are not helping your brain by exercising more, try a brain training exercise program like Exercise Bliss.

Remember, just like we discussed in #2, by training your brain to do something new repeatedly, you are actually changing yourself permanently.

6. Spend time with your loved ones

If you want optimal cognitive abilities, then you’ve got to have meaningful relationships in your life.  Talking with others and engaging with your loved ones helps you think more clearly, and it can also lift your mood.

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If you are an extrovert, this holds even more weight for you. At a class at Stanford University, I learned that extroverts actually use talking to other people as a way to understand and process their own thoughts.

I remember that the teacher told us that after a personality test said she was an extrovert, she was surprised. She had always thought of herself as an introvert. But then, she realized how much talking to others helped her frame her own thoughts, so she accepted her new-found status as an extrovert.

7. Avoid crossword puzzles

Many of us, when we think of brain fitness, think of crossword puzzles. And it’s true–crossword puzzles do improve our fluency, yet studies show they are not enough by themselves.

Are they fun? Yes. Do they sharpen your brain? Not really.

Of course, if you are doing this for fun, then by all means go ahead. If you are doing it for brain fitness, then you might want to choose another activity

8. Eat right – and make sure dark chocolate is included

Foods like fish, fruits, and vegetables help your brain perform optimally. Yet, you might not know that dark chocolate gives your brain a good boost as well.

When you eat chocolate, your brain produces dopamine. And dopamine helps you learn faster and remember better. Not to mention, chocolate contains flavonols, antioxidants, which also improve your brain functions.

So next time you have something difficult to do, make sure you grab a bite or two of dark chocolate!

The bottom line

Now that you know how to train your brain, it’s actually time to start doing.

Don’t just consume this content and then go on with your life as if nothing has changed. Put this knowledge into action and become smarter than ever!

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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