Years ago, one of my mentors introduced me to “Power Hour.” He said that most of the CEOs of Fortune 500 companies are out of bed by 5am. He also said that success leaves clues. If you want to be successful in life, whatever that means to you, follow the people who are role models for you. Start to notice their habits and rituals. Perhaps wake up an hour before you typically would in order to start your day proactively with goal setting, daily reviews, affirmations or meditation.
Jason and I quickly noticed the positive changes in our life after we introduced this habit about seven years ago. We started slowly. I have always been a morning exerciser, so this meant I would be waking up essentially two hours before I had to hit the shower in order to fit this in. I began setting the alarm a half hour before I had to wake up for my workout, but eventually found myself getting more excited to wake up even earlier so I could listen to inspiring audiobooks, teleseminars and podcasts before my workout. I found that my workouts got better as I was fully wake and feeling extremely motivated.
First thing in the morning is such a magical time. Not only are there no interruptions as most of the world is still asleep, but our unconscious minds are very sharp at this time. The things you think and tell yourself really sink in. It’s amazing the difference it makes waking up proactively rather than jumping out of bed late, rushing to get ready and hitting every possible roadblock along the way (isn’t that how it typically goes?).
In the past I did my hour of power every morning. The last few years have led to quite a few nights of disrupted sleep with our two boys so my routine has changed slightly. Some mornings I really just want that extra half hour or hour of sleep. These days, my hour of power is anywhere from 20-60 minutes depending on when the kids wake up. Some mornings it’s as simple having my coffee on the couch with Jason before the kids are awake, some mornings I listen to my inspirational books, read emails, work on ideas for the office, blog, etc. I can tell you that since the kids were born it has been more of a challenge for me to incorporate this time in the morning, but it is also that much more rewarding. Any mom will tell you how precious her time is and this is such a great way to start the day.
I challenge you this month to add a Power Hour to your schedule. Start off slowly if that is easier, waking up 20 minutes earlier and gradually increasing it from there. There are really no rules for “Power Hour” except to do something that is good for you or feels good to you. Just don’t watch the news! That is not an inspiring way to start the day! Maybe this means reading a book or a magazine, maybe it means listening to motivational audio, waking up a little earlier so you can be showered and ready before you have to help the kids get ready. As a good friend of mine says, maybe it means you wake up a little earlier so you have that extra time to lie in bed and look out the window so you can watch the trees sway. Such a nice thought!
Gotta go, I hear our kids waking up! Enjoy your Power Hour!