“Own the first hour of your morning”

  • Jade Balden –

“Our lives are a reflection of our rituals”

  • Tony Robbins –

The Miracle Morning – By Hel Elrod – Life S.A.V.E.R.S

“Win the morning.  Win the day”

  • Tim Ferris –

Every successful person in the world (whatever your notion of success maybe) have in common a daily routine that they regularly practice whether they are conscious of it or not.

Showing you how Tony Robbins, Oprah Winfrey, Lebron James and countless other World Icons start their day can seem to be distant and disconnected from my reality. 

However, there are extraordinary people living closer to us who are ‘putting in the work’ in the right places with purpose.  People making a difference in the world while making good money.

My Uncle is one of them.  He’s 80 and continues to practice his daily routine especially in the morning.   

So what?

Well, he’s no superstar but to me he is very successful.  I’ve seen him relish his 2015 new years eve, watching his great grand children, grand children, daughter and in laws run around, eat together, and love one another.

He sits on a lot of money, lives a basic life and most importantly he lives a life of his choosing.  This I think came about because of his routine practices.

I lived with him for about 5 years and in the past 25-30 years of his life he has maintained a morning ritual that has carved his current reality.

Now, we’re all creatures of habit but the majority of us are unconscious of our habit creation. 

This is why its important to ‘own your morning’ so like my uncle, and the most successful people around the world we end up living a full life.   

After digging deep into different strategies and researching why people do certain things in their morning routine practices I’ve put together this blog which will give you a clear explanation of why I do certain things in the morning to start my day off.

The following layout breaks my morning routine down into a Point Of View (POV) or first person view of my morning ritual followed by a table with the sections; Action, Application, Reasoning and Evidence.

IMPORTANT NOTE:

The POV was specially created for you so that you can get a subjective view of how I undertake my morning rituals.  My POV first explores my beliefs and then launches into my morning routine from a first person shot. 

In terms of my beliefs, I chose to do this so you get a sense of my values and how I manifest this in my daily rituals.  I believe we possess the power to create the greatest version of who we choose to be much like the creation and grandeur of universe.

Finally, I use text, subtle sounds and beautiful imagery to mimic as close as possible my experience of what I think and feel. 

Please try to watch the POV in a quiet space with head phones.

My Morning Ritual

POV

Table 1.  Belief, Wake up and Gratitude

Action

Application

Reasoning

Wake up – appreciation

4:40am

I’ve programmed myself to wake up at this time without fail.  My personal belief around the power of the subconscious mind to make this happen automatically is why I believe this to be.

I generally go through a personal battle of getting out of bed.  However I overcome this by doing the following

  1. Remind myself of the benefits after completing my routine.
  2. Remind myself that I must win the first battle of the day to be the best person I can be (this runs deep for me)
  3. I enjoy the feeling of moving my body
  4. I enjoy the feeling of accomplishment

Once awake I move into being thankful

“I’m thankful for…….”

I focus on three things and dig deep into each through word, visualisation and emotion.

“I’m grateful for my beautiful wife and kids.  I revisit the feeling of special occasions in my life.”

Immediately start my day by being grateful and appreciative of what I have materially, physically and spiritually

To build a habit of appreciation which will inevitably become a part of my identity, and unconscious mind.

Moving my energy field into a coherent frequency that vibrates at an elevated emotional state of appreciation and gratefulness.

Science

Brainwave Frequency

Just before or immediately after sleep our brain frequency is more likely to be vibrating at a lucid frequency also known as a alpha or theta state.  These two frequencies are related to states of creativity and are also said to provide better access to the subconscious and unconscious minds which house our habits and influence every decision.  Hypnosis is performed when professionals move clients into these frequencies which influence our beliefs and habits through the subconscious mind.

Physiology

Brain

If we want to build a habit we will engage first our Neocortex and Frontal lobes of the brain.  This part of the brain is responsible for higher thinking, creativity and visualisation.  Importantly, it slows down the activity of the other parts of the brain in order to focus on the task at hand.  Through repetition and visualisations of what we are grateful for we ‘create’ and or ‘strengthen’ certain neural pathways in our brain which through a process called ‘neuroplasticity’, maintain or build our ‘habits’. 

Here is a link that gives a brief explanation of ‘neuroplasticity’ which proves that our ‘brain’ is more ‘malleable’ and ‘not fixed’ as traditionally believed.   

Midbrain and glands

Feeling in our imagination, what it’s like when we are grateful engages our ‘mid brain/mammalian brain ’ which is responsible for our emotions.  When our ‘appreciation’ neural pathways are active or ‘firing’ they stimulate the release of certain chemical messengers from the midbrain that flow through the body and activate our glands which allow us to feel ‘loved’, happy and fulfilled. 

By repeating this process of thinking, visualising and feeling grateful every morning we then reach a state of ‘being’ where we end up feeling how we think and thinking how we feel. 

If we are establishing a ‘habit’ it is said to give yourself about 66 – 90 days.  This allows deep embedment first from conscious to subconscious, then from subconscious to the unconscious mind.

When we reach this state of ‘being’ it is said that we engage our ‘cerebellum’.  This part of the brain is responsible for our autonomic systems, balance, and deeper habits formed from when we were young. 

Note:  To reach a state of being faster it is important to utilise, thinking, visualisation and emotion.  If it can be done practically eg. hug your kids then you can engage all of your senses which increases the likelihood of moving from thinking and feeling to ‘being’ quicker.

POV

Table 2. Meditation

Action

Application

Reasoning

Meditation

4:45-5:00am

After affirming the things I’m grateful for I then make my way to my room, set up my meditation mat and sit in an upright position with back straight.

Make sure you have an allocated area that it is quiet. 

With your eyes closed, take 4-5 deep breaths and then relax your breathing. 

There are different methods to calm your body and mind. 

After calming your mind and body become aware of thoughts that may pop up.  Choose not to engage emotionally with them (if you loose yourself in thought and feeling refocus).  Remain the ‘observer’ of your thoughts. 

After a few minutes of this start to move into visualising your 1 year goal, your one month goal, and your daily goal.

Really feel the emotions that achieving these goals will give you.  Use your imagination to give these goals life.  Ask yourself questions about how to achieve these goals

Meditation allows us to be aware that we are more than our thoughts.  We are the ‘observer’ the ‘I’, ‘God’ or whatever you want to call it.

Practicing watching our thoughts and not engaging with them emotionally gives us the ability to control what ‘thoughts’ we engage with.  This helps throughout our life especially when some issue arises that affects us emotionally.

The use of meditation to embed our goals through thought, visualisation and emotions into our subconscious is also vital. 

I believe in a higher intelligence which simply means that our thoughts vibrate far beyond our physical body into the vast potential sea of like possibilities.  Much like the law of attraction the Infinite Intelligence draws to you like energy so that you can manifest it into physical existence.

Science

Brain Wave Frequencies and Physiology are all similar

Research

Much research has been undertaken to prove that mental practice increases the physical strength of certain body parts and increases the size of those associated parts of the brain.  Mental Gymnastics & Comparison of Training with maximal voluntary and imagined muscle contractions are examples of this. 

With this in mind it is important to understand that through routine practice of thoughts, visualisations and mantras we are strengthening those neural pathways in the brain which are vital for a more positive and fulfilling life.  The following are sayings that are used to simplify the process of neuroplasticity and or the malleable nature of the brain. 

“Use it or lose it”  “Neurons that fire together wire together”

In relation to the first quote above we can think of the formation of a habit as being easy which is far from the truth.  The reason why it is so hard to create new habits is due to the fact that old ‘neural pathways’ have been ‘used’ so much that they have become ‘main highways’ of a city.  When creating a new neural pathway the mind will say “why do I want to do that?  The old pathway is more comfortable to travel” and the new path is more difficult.  This is where the hardship lies when trying to form new habits and self narratives.  It takes a while to build a new pathway and to keep mental focus on it as that focus is more comfortable traveling down an old pathway be it negative or positive.

POV

Table 3.  Exercise & Life Maxims

Action

Application

Reasoning

Exercise

5:00-5:20am

Life Principle and Purpose Mantras

After I’ve finished my meditation session I then make my way to the sliding door.  I make a conscious effort to feel the carpet under my feet.

While I put my socks and shoes on I generally revisit what I’m thankful for in my life.  Where I live backs onto a beautiful public reserve and ocean.  Because it is generally dark I star gaze and remind myself of how fortunate I am to be here alive under these ancient stars, at this particular time, after millions of years. 

I also start to repeat my 4 life maxims as I walk out to the reserve.

“The consciousness that created the universe dwells within us”

“Consciousness weaves and directs energy”

“We exist in an energy web and are one with it”

“Everything exists for us as a possibility”

I received these maxims from John Kehoe’s book. 

The Quantum Warrior

Exercise

When I finally get to the reserve I do a few leg coordination and sprint drills.  Fast and explosive drills for about 2-3 minutes

For the past one and a half years I have been following a calisthenics programme similar to

Convict Conditioning

After doing my research and looking around the internet for different body weight workouts I came across this book.  I have pieced together my own workouts over the years but they generally follow the CC structure

Here are the foundational movements, also known as the BIG 6.

1. LEG RAISES 2. HANDSTAND PUSH UPS 3. BRIDGES 4. PULL UPS 5. SQUATS 6. PRESS UPS.

I do one exercise per day for 6 days of the week having one day rest.  I find that its not too strenuous. 

  Feeling the carpet touch my feet brings me back to the present and reminds me how thankful I am to be in such a lovely house.  Star gazing while putting my shoes on, I found out later, is a ritual that Tim Ferris talks about in the following link

  Being present and thankful not only places me in a great state of being but also strengthens these neural pathways in my brain.  They become easy to revisit and I automatically move into this state every morning.

Maxims

The maxims I chose resonated with me when I first heard them in 2014.  Since then, I memorised them and they stuck.

I also find they give me huge purpose in every line of work I undertake. 

The first maxim states that we are one with the creator and therefore have the choice and power to create our destiny.

The second maxim reinforces the importance of weaving the correct energy as our lives are a reflection of what energy we ‘focus’ on.

The third maxim states that we are all connected through the energy web that created everything seen and unseen. 

The final maxim states that everything we dream and think of already exists in the quantum field of possibilities and all that is required is that we maintain that focus and be proactive in bringing that potential into the physical.

Exercise

For many years I exercised with the purpose of achievement in sport.  Now as I approach 40 my focus has turned exercise as an integral part of being the best I can be in life. 

After researching different body weight programmes I turned to calisthenics because it suited my lifestyle.  Its long term, progressive, builds strength, muscle size, and it doesn’t require a lot of equipment.

I chose Convict Conditioning as a blueprint because it has great explanations and photo guides.

Do your research and find the best way for yourself.  Remember that this all hinges on your consistency and self discipline.

Science

Brain Wave Frequencies and Physiology are same as those above

Research

After researching calisthenics I became very interested in technique and the mind to muscle connection.  The mind to muscle connection refers mainly to time under tension or TUT.  TUT simply means there is more focused attention placed on the targeted and surrounding muscles of a certain exercise for example providing tension to the pictorials, lats, deltoids, triceps etc during a press up as opposed to just ‘doing’ a press up for press ups sake.  This translates to slower and lower reps at the beginning of the progression stages with the purpose of engaging as many of the surrounding target muscles.  There is evidence that focused attention to engage as many muscle groups as possible produces greater tension and therefore greater muscle tear and growth. 

These are the rituals I complete before I launch into my online business and my responsibilities as a father and a secondary school teacher.  By following these rituals I start my day off in the right frame of mind which proliferates throughout all aspects of my life. 

In future posts I will create content about what I do and how I go about setting my online business up.  I have chosen not to do this first because there is so much information out there that can do a better job than me.  This means that what I will provide in the future will be links to certain resources that have worked for me so I’m not reinventing the wheel. 

In conclusion I have tried to provide you with an overview of my morning routine to help you understand the importance of what, when, why and how I undertake my daily routine and rituals.

Important final note:  You don’t have to wake up at 5:00am.  This is my blueprint and this is how things have panned out for me.  What is important is that you fit time into your schedule to cater for your physical (short exercise), spiritual and mental (meditation, affirmation) health so that you are preparing yourself to live the greatest life possible everyday. 

I’ll finish this blog with a quote by Mike Murdoch that I live by

“The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine”

Much Love

Hamuera Maika (Harm)