According to Tony Robbins, rituals control our lives so if we want to achieve our goals, we must try new things…and leave our comfort zone. To create lasting change, we can’t just depend on willpower; it’s simply not a powerful enough force to help us build the momentum necessary to achieve our goals.
We need to rely on a more powerful force at our disposal.
We have to develop new habits.
Over on Farnam Street, Shane Parrish writes about what the most successful people do before breakfast:
We’re often at our peak in the mornings. This is why Mark McGuinness suggests the single most important change you can make to your workday is to move your creative time to mornings. We’re more mentally alert and our mental batteries are charged.
Where do we spend all of this energy? Email. Meetings. We fragment our time. This, however, isn’t the path to success. There is another way.
“Willpower,” Baumeister and co-author John Tierney write, “like a muscle, becomes fatigued from overuse.”
Successful people develop rituals. Rituals become habits.
Before the rest of the world is eating breakfast,” writes Laura Vanderkam in What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast “the most successful people have already scored daily victories that are advancing them toward the lives they want.”
Vanderkam studied successful people and she discovered that early mornings were when they had the most control over their own schedules. They used this time to work on their priorities.
What are the best morning habits?
1. Nurturing careers—strategizing and focused work
2. Nurturing relationships—giving families and friends their best
3. Nurturing themselves—exercise and spiritual and creative practices
I used to snooze my alarm every morning. As a result, I would wake up groggy and guilty for having snoozed. The rest of the day I felt as though I were merely reacting to events and emails, rather than driving my own agenda. Not exactly a recipe for success.
This year, I initiated a new morning ritual, which lasts for an hour in total:
- Wake up at 5am
- Do some yoga, a few sun salutations
- 3×3 (3 minutes for these 3 actions): Visualise my goals, set my intentions/goals for the day, and write what I’m grateful for
- “Productive” reading for 30 minutes
Since initiating this ritual, I feel more in control, I work in a state of greater flow, and I’m more productive throughout the day.
What rituals can you start today to set yourself up for success?