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Self Development

5 Habits You Should Steal From Other Entrepreneurs’ Morning Routines

Steve Jobs used to look into a mirror each morning and ask himself a specific question. You should follow his example.

Neil Patel

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morning-routine

Your morning affects your entire day. What you do or don’t do each day will influence how productive you are, how energetic you feel, what you accomplish and, ultimately, how successful you are as an entrepreneur.

If you’re an entrepreneur with a satisfying and motivating morning routine, you’re in good company. If not, don’t despair; take some inspiration from the morning routines of fellow entrepreneurs.

1. Wake up early

Many world-famous entrepreneurs that you follow on Twitter, read about in Entrepreneur and admire have one thing in common: They wake up early. When you wake up early, you have a greater sense of control over the day. For one thing, you get to decide what to do first, second and third.

By waking early, you also tend to have your greatest burst of energy, creativity and activity right from the start. This is the perfect time to slay some of the day’s bigger and brain-demanding tasks.

“Early” for you could be 9 a.m. or 10 a.m.. That’s okay. We all have our times of peak productivity.

Related: 3 Daily Routines For Becoming Happier And More Successful

2. Drink water

glass of water

It’s really simple. Just drink water.

Adding a chug of water to your morning routine does several important things: It boosts your metabolism, cleans things up, gives you a boost of energy, makes you fully alert and helps your digestive system run smoothly.

Kat Cole of FOCUS (Auntie Anne’s, Carvel and Cinnabon) is religious about her water routine. The first thing she does after hopping out of bed is to drink three cups of the stuff.

Coffee is the morning beverage of choice for most Americans. And certainly, caffeine is extraordinary. You can still have your coffee. But, first, have a drink of water.

3. Think about the most important things in your life

Many entrepreneurs focus on their goals as the first order of the day. By keeping their goals at the forefront of their minds, they are more likely to work hard toward those goals throughout the day.

Consider Shark Tank investor Kevin O’Leary. He’s a financial guy. So, the first thing he does after waking at 5:45 a.m. is to check the overseas bond markets. For O’Leary, the personal impact of those markets is enormous, and he wants to keep the information he gleans there present during his work day.

Entrepreneur contributor Matthew Toren, meanwhile, focuses on his 24-minute morning routine that begins with brushing his teeth and ends with stretching and meditation. Toren recommends looking at “key business initiatives for the day and how I might achieve them.”

Steve Jobs was famous for this statement about his morning routine: “For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘no’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.”

Jobs’ suggestion was, and is, a great way to begin the day: A focused assessment of your life’s direction. Each day, every day, you should have goals: Big ones, little ones, life goals, whatever. Take a few minutes to think about these. If they are truly important, they deserve some of your mental energy each morning.

In that vein, Danny Halarewich, the entrepreneur behind LemonStand, does five things every morning:

  1. Reads his life mission aloud
  2. Thinks about the importance of his life mission
  3. Reflects on the progress he’s made toward his life mission
  4. Considers several things he’s thankful for
  5. Reviews his top goals for the day.

A short burst of contemplation like Halarewich’s can work wonders. You’ll enter your day focused, driven and committed to your goals. Even if you don’t know what your life mission is – yet –contemplating your immediate goals and their significance will help you focus.

Related: The Best Days Start With Powerful Mornings

4. Get active

Man-running

Most of us are swivel chair-locked, meaning that we spend a lot of our day sitting down. That’s why the morning is a great time to get in your daily workout. Your willpower is most potent in the morning, so you have a better chance of following through on your workout commitments.

Starting the day with a workout won’t deplete your energy. Instead, it will give you more energy, which will improve your focus, and help you to be more productive.

5. Meditate

Meditation is a powerful way to prepare your mind for the day, helping you fight the stress that will invariably come at some point during the day.

Your particular meditation needn’t take a long time. A simple three-to-10 minute meditation is perfect. Meditation isn’t complicated, either, and you don’t have to learn any mantras if you don’t want to. Meditation in its most basic form is simply breathing: free-flowing, deliberate and concentrated breathing.

Brad Lande, the entrepreneur behind Birchbox, has a five-step morning routine. (Meditation is the second step on the list.):

  • Hot water with lemon
  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Face oil
  • Breakfast smoothie

When you incorporate meditation into your morning routine, you’ll unfailingly experience greater calm and focus during your day, no matter how hectic things get. You’ll soon realise why so many entrepreneurs practice meditation every morning. For instance, entrepreneur Taylor Pearson says that with meditation: “It helps you handle the endless choices that confront you, and focus on what’s truly important.”

Final thoughts

As an entrepreneur, you owe it to yourself to be the best you can be for your goals and for your business. And your mornings play a huge role in your success. So, find a routine that leaves you feeling focused, committed and prepared for your day, rather than practicing multiple routines and forcing yourself into a mold that isn’t right for you.

Related: This 1 Early Morning Ritual Will Get You Moving – Fast!

When you do find the right fit, you’ll experience a greater sense of general well-being and ease as you form these healthy habits.

This article was originally posted here on Entrepreneur.com.

Neil Patel is co-founder of Crazy Egg, Hello Bar and KISSmetrics. He helps companies like Amazon, NBC, GM, HP and Viacom grow their revenue.

Self Development

6 Mental Barriers You Must Tear Down To Succeed

The world has few obstacles as formidable as the ones in our own mind.

Timothy Sykes

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Mental Barriers

Have you hit a slump in your career? If you are finding it difficult to get ahead, it could be because you’re inadvertently holding yourself back in ways you don’t even realize.

Many of us have unhealthy habits and behaviors that stunt our career growth. By becoming aware of them, it’s possible to begin facing these obstacles head-on so that you can remove potential roadblocks to your future success. Here are 6 surprising things that are holding you back:

1. You don’t know the basics

What if you were to build a house on top of a weak foundation? It might be fine for a while, but one day, it would inevitably cause problems and affect your quality of life. Similarly in your career, if you don’t take the time to form a strong foundation of knowledge in your field, it may keep you from advancing and growing later on. Therefore, it’s vital to learn (and sometimes to re-learn) the basics.

There’s no shame in hitting the books and learning the basics or re-learning them, even well into your career. You know how when you re-watch a movie or re-read a book you pick up on things you didn’t notice the first time around? It’s very much the same in career education. So whether you’re a baker or an investor or a manager, make sure to develop a strong foundational knowledge of your field of work. It will serve you in many ways as your career advances.

Related: Purposeful Work: The Six Barriers To Fulfilment In The Workplace

2. Vague goals

Setting clear and specific goals is one of the major building blocks of career success. On the flip side, without specific goals, you’re more likely to suffer from lack of motivation and aimlessness in your career.

Want proof? Consider the work of Dr. Edwin Locke, who released a still-relevant article in 1968 entitled “Toward a Theory of Task Motivation and Incentives.” In this research-based article, he determined that employees were most highly motivated by clear objectives and specific feedback.

Working toward extremely specific goals provided a major source of motivation to actually reach the desired end result, which improved performance. Moreover, specific and difficult goals led to better task performance than vague or easy goals.

3. Caring too much what others think

According to Aristotle, “There is only one way to avoid criticism: Do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing.” Are you too much of a people pleaser? If so, this tendency could be holding you back from finding the success you deserve.

No matter what you do, you’ll never please everybody. Yes, you should always make your best efforts in any endeavour, and you should always try to be respectful of the opinions of others. However, don’t let other people’s opinions affect your every move. If you do, you’ll constantly operate from a place of fear and will never achieve great things.

4. You’re trying to figure out everything without a mentor

 Bill Gates, Bob Dylan, Oprah Winfrey. What do these people have in common? They’re all crazy successful…and they all had mentors.

Many people suffer from the belief that to become successful, they have to do the equivalent of climbing Mount Everest alone. However, this mindset is likely stunting their career and slowing down success. Truthfully, seeking out the guidance of a mentor is both a brave and smart career move. A mentor who is further along in their career than you can help advise you, point you in the right direction and help you avoid common pitfalls. There is so much to gain from having a mentor; why hold yourself back by trying to do everything alone?

5. Poor time management

Without a doubt, pursuing a new career or business endeavor takes time. Many people claim that it’s impossible to work toward their dreams because there’s just no time. But is this really true?

The fact is, nobody’s ever going to gift wrap extra time and give it to you like a present. It’s your responsibility to make time. It might involve changing some of your habits like bingeing on Netflix or getting lost on Facebook for hours on end. Or, it might mean that you wake up early in the morning like Apple CEO Tim Cook, who gets up at 3:45 so he can answer emails and take some time for himself before the responsibilities of the day descend. There are always ways to make time for what matters if you’re truly driven to succeed.

Related: Is Your Business Prepared For The Worst? How You Can Stress-Test Your Business

6. You stopped learning

Lifelong learning is a trait of the most successful people. Don’t you want to be one of them? If you think you know everything, then there’s no possible way for you to continue moving forward in your career or even your life.

As Malcolm X famously said, “Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.” When you approach the world as if you can learn from every experience and every person, you’ll reap many benefits. You’ll be able to keep improving, you’ll be able to remain mentally nimble, and since you won’t be a know-it-all, people will probably like you a lot better. Never stop learning if you want to keep growing.

Are any of these things secretly holding you back?

This article was originally posted here on Entrepreneur.com.

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Self Development

(Infographic) How 9 Creative Minds Got Their Ideas

From doing headstands to drinking 50 cups of coffee a day, check out the quirky things that these nine creatives have done.

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cat-in-the-hat

Coming up with new, creative ideas can be tricky. That’s why it’s important to find a way to get inspired. After all, it’s our own unique rituals that can bring mental clarity and creativity. That could be a quirky habit or routine such as doing headstands or wearing lots of hats.

Igor Stravinksy did headstands, which he believed helped to rest his head and clear his brain. Author Dr. Seuss felt that wearing lots of crazy hats helped inspire his creativity and overcome writer’s block. However, those aren’t even the strangest routines that some of the world’s most brilliant minds have utilised. Steve Jobs bathed his feet in toilet water to reduce stress levels while Honore de Balzac drank up to 50 cups of coffee a day.

Check out Business Backers infographic below to learn the weird ways that nine creative minds got their ideas.

1533319920_unusual-inspiration-infographic

This article was originally posted here on Entrepreneur.com.

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Self Development

15 Traits Of Unstoppable People

Unstoppable people keep their inner fires burning by developing the characteristics necessary to become successful.

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successful-people

Unstoppable people are like warriors. They are always ready to take on the world. They are guided by a light from within, full of boundless energy and unwavering in their goals. They have learned to activate their natural talents and develop the skills necessary to achieve whatever they aim for.

How do they do this? Where do they find the stamina and strength to keep going? Unstoppable people keep their inner fires burning by developing the characteristics necessary to become successful. Here are 15 traits that will help you go from being a solid achiever to being a truly unstoppable person.

Do you have any yet?

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