In advance of my ebook, What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast, coming out next week, I asked readers of my newsletter if they had tips for successful mornings. Christine Dahl, who lives in the Netherlands, wrote that she had wanted to exercise in the morning, but “success meant breaking the new habit into small steps.”
So how did she do that? “I started by just getting up a little earlier and enjoying my coffee without doing anything else,” she says. “After a week, getting up earlier was routine, and I added some other activities — lifting weights, cycling and running. It still takes me about 20 minutes to get moving, but move I do!”
I think Christine gets at an important point here. The habit of getting up early to exercise is, in fact, two habits: getting up early and exercise. If you’re already in the habit of doing one of these things, fine. But trying to create two new habits at once often sets us up for failure.
So, to make early morning exercise a habit, first you should try making early mornings a habit — but with nothing too strenuous in store. Sure, it sounds a little silly (and perhaps like a waste of time). But personal change is hard. If getting up early for a few weeks for no real reason makes success more likely, then that’s not wasting time at all.
How have you made over your mornings?