You’ve been wasting your mornings — create a routine

A few years ago, I gave myself the goal of creating a morning routine that I would stick to. The goal was to give my days a head start and make sure that I’d prioritize my health over work. It took approximately eight months to find what worked for me and start building that habit. It wasn’t a smooth journey but an important one. Since then, I have been casually helping founders and busy professionals to find a morning routine that would work for them.

Typically, somebody would reach out after one of my talks and share how they’ve been trying to get into a routine many times but unsuccessfully. The main reasons were 1/ hoping to get results by making significant sacrifices at once 2/ lacking a structure 3/ making this a social thing.

Build for the long run

I have heard stories of professional who would suddenly wake up at 4 am, workout for hours, meditate, and read the news. It often leads to a traumatic experience of the morning routine, because the body cannot cope with such a sudden transformation.

The biggest challenge is to overcome the weakness of the mind. Fooling oneself is so easy. Creating a structure that doesn’t leave me a choice has been vital. For example, going to the gym every three days often end up being “any other day.” Whereas, doing some daily stretches doesn’t give you a chance to argue.

Some went on a full commitment by making it a social thing, probably missing the point that social pressure won’t apply at the right moments.

Getting into such a habit is accepting that results won’t be observable quickly. I wouldn’t see any improvement on my day to day without being consistent for at least three months. It’s also about starting things small, sticking to this new change, and increasing the intensity over time. Yep, it’s about committing to a new way of waking up in the morning and exploring this as part of a new journey.

Matthieu Bodin is an entrepreneur and community builder. As Regional Manager for Techstars in Greater China, he works with 200+ community leaders in 18 different cities to empower project creators across the region. Continuously experimenting with #Innovation led him to facilitate events with MTR, INFINITI, Apple, UNDP, Siemens, French Tech HK, InvestHK, RISE Conference, Techsauce, Echelon and more. As an entrepreneur, he co-founded Note-in, Anekdote.co, JookApp.com, and now Carnet.cc - a collection of thoughts and discoveries. He has spent 12+ years in Greater China: Beijing, Hong Kong, and now Shanghai. He is on Twitter and Instagram with @maboxiu.

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