Hint: They don’t hit snooze.
Turns out, there really is something to the age-old proverb, “The early bird gets the worm.” From top-level CEOs to professional athletes, many of the most successful people in the world are early risers – and not just because that’s how their bodies are programmed. They choose to wake up early so that they can seize the day.
Successful people use the early hours of the morning to set the tone for the entire day. They use these hours wisely, before the clutter and the chaos of the day can distract them. Let’s take a look at four common morning habits of successful people.
They wake up early
Cue groans from night owls everywhere, but it’s true – successful people set their alarm clocks an hour or two (or sometimes five) before everyone else. Apple CEO Tim Cook wakes up at 3:45 a.m. and spends an hour catching up on emails, Michelle Obama is already working up a sweat in the gym by 4:30 a.m., and Disney CEO Bob Iger wakes up at 4:30 a.m. to read. These successful, Type-A people know there are only so many hours in the day, so they make the most of them by getting started early.
We all know that exercise is essential for physical health, but successful people are also keenly aware how important exercise is for mental clarity. Neuroscientists have proven that physical activity makes you smarter, and successful people need to be sharp all day long. That’s why some of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs, athletes and artists wake up early to squeeze in a workout before heading off to work. You too could incorporate exercise into your morning routine, and then you’d be one step closer to mimicking the lifestyle of society’s powerhouses. And you know what they say…Fake it ’til you make it.
They work on their side hustle
Whether it’s a side hustle or a passion project, successful people carve out time in the morning to work on something that’s not necessarily paying the bills at the moment. Mornings can provide mental clarity that fosters creativity, which is why many successful people wake up early to work on novels, brainstorm new app ideas or practice their pitch for the afternoon business meeting.
They set goals
All successful people set goals – both long-term goals and short-term goals. Most successful people also set daily goals, and the best time to do this is first thing in the a.m. Writing out your goals for the day can help you prioritize your tasks and give you a sense of direction, ultimately making you more productive. One study actually found that people who write down their goals regularly are 42 percent more likely to achieve them, so it makes a lot of sense why so many of the world’s most successful people are so devout about setting daily goals.
The simple act of setting your alarm clock an hour or two earlier is a relatively small lifestyle change that could make a big impact in your life. Yes, you will have to say goodbye to the warm comfort of your bed far earlier than you’d like, but you’ll thank yourself come nighttime when you reflect on all that you accomplished that day.