When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive - to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.
— Marcus Aurelius

1. The moment you open your eyes in the morning train your mind to do 2 things. 

A. Express Gratitude: List 3 things you are grateful for right when you wake up and before you go to bed. Gratitude is like a muscle. It must be strengthened on a regular basis. 

B. Body and Energy Scan: Close your eyes (but don't fall back asleep!) and breathe into every part of your body. Breathe down to your toes, up your legs, along your spine, into the chest cavity, down the arms, around the head and face. Mentally connect and feel each part of your body to tune in. 

Assess how you feel. Are there any parts of your that feel rigid and tight, dull or numb, open and spacious? Without judgment be aware and simply feel. 

Next Level: Perform Controlled Articular Rotations (CARs) as a daily morning joint mobility routine. The joints don't have a direct blood supply like our tissues. They rely on movement through the full range of motion to get nutrients. 

2. Have a Morning Routine

Save your decision making power for the novel and important things. Have a morning routine that flows and supports your health and creativity. 

Below are a few ideas of how you can craft your own morning ritual. 

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3. Keep Your WHY in Mind

When you have a busy schedule and start to feel drained how do you ignite the inner fire and raise your energy? 

CONNECT TO YOUR WHY

Go deep. Go beyond surface level. Make it personal. 

Why did you start in the first place?

When you get tired remember that feeling of excitement, passion, and drive. Go to that place and keep it open! Wear it in your gestures, let it roll off your tongue in every conversation, feel it pulsate through you. 

Write your WHY down somewhere you see it everyday. Paint a picture in your mind of your why and connect to it everyday; multiple times per day until it sticks!  

4. Move More

Exercise is just as much for your brain and mind as it is for your body. 

Biologist and educator Carla Hannaford, Ph.D., writes in her book “Smart Moves: Why Learning Is Not All in Your Head,” “The more you use the body-mind system, the more it will grow.” Think of movement as a way to code your nerve networks. A variety of exercises that present unique challenges will code your body and brain for high-level functionality. Which means that by providing your body and brain with new information, you’re upgrading yourself!

More movement throughout the day keeps your joints healthy, spurs creativity, elevates mood, and decreases cravings.

Instead of one lengthy workout try to get in short to moderate sessions multiple times per day. 

For example, in the morning perform mobility and calisthenics. Mid-day walk, stretch, take the stairs, get outside for some fresh air.  In the late afternoon hit the gym for strength and cardio.

It may seem like exercise will take time away from business matters, but truthfully more movement throughout the day can make you more efficient, creative, and happier.  

Here are a few of my favorite mobility moves

5. Fuel Up Right

Eat mindfully and intelligently. As the saying goes, "You are what you eat." 

Here's a post with a list of recommended foods. 

Here's a post discussing how to optimize your focus with nutrition

6. BREATHE! 

Give yourself just 5 minutes to do absolutely nothing but simply breathe everyday. 

Here's an exercise to try: 

Prone Diaphragmatic Breathing

Lie on your stomach with your arms crossed out in front and your forehead resting on the back of your hands. Breathe into each segment of the spine, starting with three to five breaths into the chest and upper rib cage, middle of back and, finally, into the low back. With each inhalation, fill and lift the torso off the ground as if you’re on hydraulics. With the exhalation, feel the abs pulling away from the ground.

7. Reflection

Setting aside 15 minutes to reflect and write at the end of your workday can improve performance. In one study, participants wrote what went well that day and what didn’t. The employees who recorded their thoughts reported 23 percent higher performance.

At the end of the workday or before going to sleep, record what went well that day and where there’s room for improvement. Perhaps record a few action steps you’d like to implement the next day and see if you get different results.

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