I’ve always loved starting early. They say that the greatest people start early. That’s probably why I like it. I want to emulate great people and I feel like I am giving myself the best chance to be like them. Only 5% of the world are willing to start their day at 5am. I find that exciting. It makes me immediately feel like a top performer. Having that psychological edge really carries me through the day.
To play the 5am game, you have to set your alarm for 5am and decide what you want to do with the first hour of your day. I recommend scheduling, exercise and learning something new, but you can choose to do anything – whatever you think will make a difference.
5am – Exercise
My routine is simple. I get up to my alarm at 5am. I put my trainers on, wash my face, say my positive affirmations in the mirror and then I go outside for a run.
5.20am – Schedule
I arrive back in the house at 5.20. I schedule my day. What do I want to achieve? Is there anything else on my mind?
5.40am – Learn something new
At 5.40 I learn something new. This morning I read a chapter of High Performance Habits, which gave me the tricks to improve my clarity.
6am – Do what I want
Now it’s me time until 7am. If I want to continue learning I can. If I want to go back to bed, I do. I can write, go for a walk, listen to music. At the moment I am writing my posts for this blog. It gives me the time to think.
7am – My day starts fully
I have a call with my friend setting up the day. I have my breakfast, I get changed and I get on with whatever I have scheduled to do that day.
Why do I love this game?
I know that by 6am every day I have exercised, learnt something new and set myself up for a good day. If I do nothing else I will have done something. Performance drives performance and when I start the day well I want to keep winning. I keep momentum going right through the day. It’s crazy how it works psychologically.
Exercise – it gets me out there with nature. I love feeling part of the world and even in London, one of the busiest cities in the world, it is peaceful at 5am. I can experience the beauty of the usually crowded streets and parks almost uninterrupted. I feel connected to the world and I feel I am making the most of it.
Scheduling – One of the biggest issues in my life is knowing what I want to do with myself. If I set my todos every morning, but 5.40 I am clear on what I need to do. I also know whether I can fit more in than I originally thought, or whether I need to be quick with my tasks so that I get through them all. It gives me real clarity, which is priceless.
Learning something new – At 28 and as an entrepreneur that wants to help millions of people live happy, connected, powerful lives, I know that I have so much to learn to get to where I want to get to. 20 minutes every day set aside for learning means that I always have the opportunity to evolve my ideas.
How to get started?
Like nearly everything I suggest, this isn’t something that just happens overnight. This is a process of persistence and practice. I set myself the challenge of waking up at 5am for 66 days in a row. I didn’t achieve all 66 days, some nights up was up until 1am and it just wasn’t practical, but I was doing it 4-5 days a week and it has become very natural to me.
I was also careful not to forego on too much sleep to begin with. If I was in bed at the right time, then I guaranteed myself I’d get up – (sticking to your word is important) – but it’s also unproductive walking around like a zombie if life requires you to have a few late nights. I’m working towards a schedule where I can be in bed by 10pm every night, but I know that’s not possible right now with the commitments that I have.
Before the 5am starts
Before I started my 5am game, I found mornings to be much less productive. I was always racing to fit everything in and often starting the day without exercise or a schedule. My head would be all over the place by 10am.
I love my clarity and I love how much I feel like I’m winning at life. Give it a try for 66 days and let me know how you get on.