In this week’s podcast episode, I talk all about productivity and morning routines.
You’ll discover why my morning routine is different than everyone else’s and why I make no apologies for that!
Two years ago, I recorded a podcast episode where I talked all about my morning and evening routines at that time. If you would like to hear it, click here.
In that episode, I focused on decision fatigue and how setting up routines that you can run on auto-pilot will minimize the number of decisions you need to make. It's amazing the difference a well-planned morning routine can make!
This week’s episode continues to build on that topic with a focus on productivity.
I love productivity.
I’m a productivity nut. If there is any way that I can save 5 seconds a day, I’ll figure it out and I’ll save those 5 seconds, whether I put them to good use or not!
Wasting time is one of my biggest pet peeves. So, I love to study how to be more productive.
However, just recently I noticed that the majority of the productivity gurus that I have been following – those with podcasts, books, blogs, etc. on productivity – are all men.
I’ve tried to change this and seek out female leaders in the productivity field, but they are hard to find.
Even though I am a very productive person, it’s hard not to feel like I’m not as productive as I could be when comparing myself to someone so different than me. There are many differences between the productivity schedule of a man and a woman. There are also key differences between the schedule of a Gen X and Gen Y person. There are HUGE differences between the productivity schedule of people with and without kids!
Many of the male gurus I have been listening to want you to get up early (before 5am), have an ice cold shower, exercise, meditate… this is not for me. I've tried aspects of it. I even found myself in the gym at 6am…it DID NOT work out well for me!
I realized, I was comparing myself to people with such different lives, goals, and challenges than mine.
We all strive for balance.
As women, we are always trying to seek balance in our lives. But you know what… balance is boring!
We can’t perfectly balance everything and if we do – if there is complete balance and not one single thing that gets more of you because you’re so passionate about it – where is the fun in that?!
Think of it like a cookie. First, we all like/need different ingredients in our cookies. The base ingredients are often similar, but the rest varies, whether that’s chocolate, raisins, gluten free, soy free, etc., just like we all have different things going on in our life.
Second, whatever those ingredients are, they are not required in equal proportions. That would not make for a good cookie!
Third, there is no perfect cookie for all. We are all different and unique!
You need to know WHO you are taking productivity and morning routine advice from.
The productivity routine of the modern woman covers 7 items:
Work - paid or unpaid
They may not all be applicable to everyone. For example, I know not everyone has a spouse or kids. Personally, I opted out of number 2 and have a housekeeper!
My point is that you need to know who you are, what phase of life you’re in, when you like to wake up, what your expectations are for yourself and work. When you are clear on all of that, you can work out the best morning routine for you.
My morning routine.
I define my morning routine as from the time I wake up until when I start the productive part of my day. For me that is a 5:45-6am wake-up until around 9-10am when I get to work.
I wake up with enough time to get up, get ready, and get in the car to take my kids to school. I’m on auto-pilot with my routine so much so that I don’t need to think about it. Refer to this episode and to learn about my morning routine
It’s almost impossible for me to forget anything with the way that I’ve organized this. In this week’s episode, I talk you through in detail exactly what I do, what I eat, etc.
There are 4 steps to establishing a morning routine.
Step 1 – Habitualize your regular daily morning routine for getting up/ready
Step 2 – Determine your best work time for doing your household tasks and work
Step 3 – Create a flex day – this is a day where you don’t have any big work demands and can blitz smaller tasks and be responsive to new things that come up
Step 4 – Create a focus for each day – this doesn’t mean you can’t do other things, but always have a focus/priority for each day
There is no perfect.
I’ve spent so much time trying to find the perfect morning routine and the perfect way to be productive. I realize now that there is no such thing as perfect.
I would love for you to look at your own morning routine.
Are you a morning person or not?
Do you like to dive into creative work early or not?
Is exercise something that really helps you first thing?
Get to know yourself and build the routine that suits you. What fuels you? How long does it take? How do you work best?