Get ready for an amazing insight coming at you. People with a good, positive, optimistic attitude tend to enjoy their day more and accomplish more than people with a negative, depressing, pessimistic attitude. See, I told you—deep insight. You’re welcome.
We know this from research and from our own experience. But how do we create and maintain the positive mindset we need to live a happier, healthier life and reach all our goals?
I’ve got some great tips for you, but I want to begin with this:
Start every morning by thinking about all the great things in your life. For most of us it’s pretty easy coming up with at least a short list.
I have a routine I go through every day when I wake up that gets me up on the right side of the bed. I’m a Christian, so for me this ties into my religion. But, you can use the same type of technique whether you’re religious or not. Instead of a thankful prayer list, simply make it your gratitude list.
As I slowly wake up, I start to pray. I thank God for for my wife, my children, my extended family, and my friends. I thank Him for the fact that I have more than enough to provide my family with food, clothing, and shelter. I praise Him for the fact that I was born in the United States of America and I have so many opportunities to create a life of abundance for myself and enough to help others as well. I give thanks for the multiple ways I’m able to earn income doing something I love, and I’m grateful for my excellent health.
I give thanks that I’m not stuck in a job I hate with some guy telling me I need to get my TPS forms in and another guy claiming I stole his stapler.
As I’m saying my prayers, I’m creating beautiful images in my head of everything I’m praying about. As I do this, I can feel my body and spirit coming more and more alive. Feelings of peace and happiness and ambition well up within me and I begin to feel excited about getting out of bed and starting the day. I spend about three minutes doing this. (I know this sounds kind of touchy-feely, but if you try it for a few days I think you will be amazed at the results you get.)
After I’m done giving thanks, I spend the next three to five minutes being grateful for my future life with all my major goals achieved. I put everything in the present tense as if I’m already living the life I want. I’m getting my conscious and subconscious minds focused on my goals, and the best way to do that is to put everything we want in the present tense.
I visualize pursuing my Passionate Purpose at the ultimate level. I imagine achieving my goals in every aspect of my life. If you really want to get excited about your future, describe it in great detail and imagine how it will look, feel, sound, smell, and taste. Get your emotions into it. Play the movie of your extraordinary life in your head. It’s better than any blockbuster at the multiplex.
The more real you make this, the more excited you will become to take on the day, and the more your subconscious mind will help you pursue your goals.
My daughter has a great quote on the lock screen of her phone: “I did not wake up today to be mediocre.” I know you didn’t either. So, let’s GO!
On to the tips!
1)Wake up early enough that you don’t have to rush
Most people wake up with just enough time to race through showering, getting dressed, getting the kids off to school, and grabbing a cup of coffee on the way out the door. How’s that working out for you? Is it really a great way to start the day?
Instead, supercharge the morning by getting up 30 minutes before you normally do in order to read, think, pray, meditate, or exercise. It sounds horrible if you’re not a morning person, but if you make it a new habit you will never stop.
Imagine how good it would feel to take your time in getting ready for greatness.
2)Wake up gently
Being jolted awake by a loud, buzzing alarm clock is actually bad for your health. (Plus, it scares the bleep out of you! Or maybe that’s just me.) The research shows it increases your blood pressure, heart rate, adrenaline and stress. Sounds like a super way to wake up to me, right? All we need now is for a small stroke and we’re ready to start the day.
Instead, set your alarm to a soothing sound or spa music. The best alarms slowly increase the volume and the light in your room over the course of a few minutes to gently wake you up.
But, Greg, I’ll sleep right through that. You don’t get me.
Hey, I’m feeling you. One time, at summer camp, my brother slept through a cannon and bugle call they blew every morning. But, trust me. The increasing sound and light together will wake you up. And it will be a much more pleasant way to start the day.
3)Stretch in bed before you get up.
Stress and relax each body part. Start with your toes. Flex and hold for about five seconds. Then relax them. Do that with every body part working your way all the way up to your forehead. It’s feels great and gets your physical body ready for action.
4)Have a wonderful breakfast (or at least something)
I know a lot of people say they don’t have time for it (see tip #1) or they don’t like to cook. I understand it’s not for everyone, but try it at least once a week with everyone in your house. I think you’re going to love it. I make eggs, sausage, toast, and some fruit every morning.
If you can’t do that, at least grab some fruit, and some protein (almonds or peanut butter on a spoon works) on your way out the door. It will get your metabolism going and keep you powered up until lunch.
5)Put your phone in your pocket without looking at it.
This is very hard for me to do, but it’s super rewarding. It will quickly become your new habit. It lets you set your priorities for the day instead of giving that power to your emails and social media. Schedule a set time in the morning to check those things – but NOT when you first wake up.
6)Every time you open your email program write a quick thank you to one person.
The thank you can be for something simple or something big. It doesn’t matter, just make sure it’s a real thank you. When you force yourself to think of who you should thank, and why, you will realize how many people help you and are nice to you – and how often we overlook it.
If you’re being efficient, you should only be checking your emails a couple of times a day. So, you need to come up with only a couple of people to thank.
I think this is my favorite tip on my list. When you do this, your relationships will change.
7)Pick someone you can help today.
Have you noticed that when you help someone else your problems seem to get smaller? It never fails. I don’t do this every day. I get busy. I forget. I worry that the person might not want my help. But, I’ve never felt bad after helping someone else.
Questions for comment: When was the last time you woke up energized and looking forward to the day? What did you do to create that experience?
(If this post resonated with you, please share it, and my free eBook, 5 Steps to Finding and Pursuing Your Purpose, with a friend.)