Top Performers Do This Every Single Morning
My Morning Routine
Most high performers use systems and do their most important tasks first. Morning routines are a way to lock in a healthy set of practices that become second nature and require no thought or decision making.Everyone should have a set routine for at least a part of the day. Routines eliminate distractions and allow us to focus on what matters most. They also set us up for success later in the day.
I’m someone who thrives on routines. If I have to spend time every single say figuring out what clothes to wear and what I should eat for breakfast, I use up too much willpower too early in the morning.
I want to save my time and thinking ability for other tasks.
I have an ideal way to wake up every single morning.
I Set My Intentions
I wake up without an alarm, in bed next to my still sleeping wife. I open the curtains and let the soft morning light filter in on my skin and close my eyes as I lay back in bed.
I meditate in bed for 15 minutes, write in my journal for 5 minutes and then get up and start some coffee.
I have read that movement first thing in the morning, along with some natural light exposure sets up proper circadian rhythm in the body and leads to better sleep at night.
So, while the coffee is on, I head to the living room in the winter, or back porch in the summer and do some yoga or Qigong exercises for 20 minutes. I soak up some natural light and fresh air. Even in the winter, I’ll open up the sliding door and take 3 big breaths of fresh air. Outdoor air is 5x less polluted than indoor air, Yes, even if you live in Los Angeles.
I follow this with 100 jumping jacks to help stimulate lymph flow and get everything moving.
Stroll Around the Park
I then grab the dogs and go for a walk around the small park behind my house. Winter or summer, I head out for a walk as soon as it’s light. I enjoy hearing the birds and seeing what’s new with the bunnies and fox in our local park.
15 minutes later, I’m back home and heading to the kitchen.
Coffee is hot, so I make up a Bulletproof coffee. My version uses half decaf and half caffeinated, 1tbs Brain Octane Oil, 1tsp grassfed butter, 1tsp cacao butter, cinnamon, stevia, ½ tsp Bulletproof Upgraded Chocolate Powder, all blended up into a rich frothy concoction of coffee love. Yum. This is my favorite way to drink coffee and I look forward to it each morning. If I’m not intermittent fasting that morning, I’ll add Bulletproof Upgraded Collagen to my coffee and an egg. Once in a while I’ll also throw in some grassfed low temperature whey protein.
This is my travel mug (the mug I use at home is a huge stainless steel smoothie cup), I’m taking these photos at my Mom’s in California.
I bring my giant 20 ounce stainless steel cup of coffee down to my home office (which for me is in my finished basement bedroom that I converted into an office) and start my most important task of the day, which I determined the night before.
After my most important task is complete, I launch into processing and responding to emails and getting on the phone for meetings. I do not look at emails first thing in the morning and usually check email only three times a day, after my most important task, right before lunch and 30 minutes before the end of the day.
Now Here’s my Actual Morning Routine (For the last 5 years)
I wish I could follow my ideal routine, but with kids, it just doesn’t happen.
I wake up at 5:11AM, with usually one, but sometimes two kids jumping on me and launching into questions. What are we going to do today? Oh, school? Right. When are you getting up? Can you help me build this Lego ship?
Then the lights come on (thanks kids) and flood the bedroom with harsh processed light from two white LEDs.
I get up and brush my teeth and then put the coffee on.
At 5:45am after answering countless questions and responding to requests for viewing precious works of art, I sit down with my sons to help them read and draw. We then make some breakfast together, usually eggs or gluten free pancakes for them and the same Bulletproof Coffee version as noted above for me, or my cold brew, which I’ve been making all summer long (sometimes I heat it up in a pot just enough to melt the cocoa butter).
6:45am – I take my coffee, after my wife gets up, hug the kids, and run down to work. I have left a hot cup of coffee out for my wife to make into her caffeine-protein bodybuilder morning special.
7am – I down a few supplements with my coffee. These days that’s L-methyl folate, methylcobalamin, Vit D3 if it’s winter, and a smart drug stack (which I only take a couple days a month. Right now I’m trying out Qualia, but before that it would be aniracetam and Bulletproof Unfair Advantage).
Immediately the phone rings and I’m off helping someone solve a problem, usually before I can get to the task I most wanted to do.
8am – I fit in 100 jumping jacks or 5 minutes on the rebounder (a mini trampoline we have in our basement that my mother in law bought for the kids to jump on). If I’m on a call still, I put myself on mute and then try to slow my breathing before I take myself off mute as I realize I was just asked a question.
At 8:20am, I take a break from work to bring one of the kids to school or the bus stop and see them off for the day.
8:35am – 15 minutes later, when I get back, I grab a cup of green tea (with lemon!) and then spend about an hour working before taking a break to do some yoga at my desk or lift weights for 15 minutes.
If I get another break before lunch, I spend 15 minutes in a mindfulness mediation.
I do a few pullups on my pullup bar every time I walk to the bathroom or leave my office, referred to as greasing the groove from Pavel.
11:30am – Morning over, I have spent 14-17 hours fasting (Bulletproof intermittent fasting since dinner the night before at 6pm), received my morning dose of sunshine and fresh air, spent a few minutes to 45 minutes with my kids, performed at least 15 minutes of movement through jumping jacks, yoga or weight lifting (my home gym is a few steps from my office), had one giant cup of coffee and one green tea, checked my email once or twice and have spent about 4 hours working.
Then I get into my afternoon routine. Which we’ll save for another day.