If you were to assemble the daily habits of thousands of successful people, there is an evident symptomatic pattern. Observing biographies, memoirs, interviews and other data, this pattern is easy to spot.
But success is something hard to agree upon. Despite the basic contour, it means different things to different people. Some pursue notoriety and material gains, while others seek a healthy and balanced life. What we ultimately want is not success- for we still haven’t agreed upon what success is. We want to feel successful. Be happy, balanced, and lead a fulfilled life that is rich with purpose.
And if you are after a fulfilled life, with a clear purpose and relaxed state of mind, you will notice how dozen of habits overlap among thousands of people who experience success in many shapes and forms.
Believe it or not, it doesn’t require herculean effort. Everything you will read below is easy to follow and implement in your life as well. And before one month comes to an end, you will experience what it’s like to feel successful no matter what.
Set up a morning routine
For most people, the pace of life imposes a manufactured sense of emergency.
But successful people learn to ignore this. Instead, they structure a morning routine that includes a number of small rituals. By doing so, they prime themselves and set the tone for the rest of the day- balance, self-control, and a relaxed state of mind.
The morning routine, at its longest cumulative length, can take up to 25 minutes. But you can easily feel the benefits with as much as 15 or so.
First, start off by making your bed
This is an advice from admiral McRaven, who during his speech at the University of Texas at Austin said the following:
It was a simple task—mundane at best. But every morning we were required to make our bed to perfection. It seemed a little ridiculous at the time, particularly in light of the fact that were aspiring to be real warriors, tough battle hardened SEALs—but the wisdom of this simple act has been proven to me many times over.
If you make your bed every morning you will have accomplished the first task of the day. It will give you a small sense of pride and it will encourage you to do another task and another and another.
By the end of the day, that one task completed will have turned into many tasks completed. Making your bed will also reinforce the fact that little things in life matter. If you can’t do the little things right, you will never do the big things right.
Making your bed is the shortest and simplest task which, through symbolism, will teach you that you are the only one who is in control over your life.
This is also a simple task, and one that doesn’t need to take more than 5 minutes out of your day.
Do your own variety of stretches, be that yoga poses or flexibility drills. The goal is to get in touch with your body, increase awareness, and cause the brain to release serotonin, dopamine and endorphin.
You can even include a short workout if time allows. Many successful people do some sort of physical training in the morning in order to prepare the mind, by detaching from everything that follows and enjoying the here-and-now.
My fiancée, who is studying psychology, noticed the link between a healthy and balanced mind and physical awareness. Therefore, she’s incorporated a workout program in her morning routine as well. Like I said, it doesn’t have to be something fancy- she for example, does the Piyo workout. Read more about Piyo from beachbody in this great Piyo review.
Write your thoughts on a piece of paper
We can name this technique in many different ways, but journaling kind of perfectly describes it.
Each day, just put aside three to five minutes in order to sit down and write anything that comes to mind. With enough time and practice you will learn how to be brutally honest with yourself, and discard all the unpleasant and negative thoughts while priming yourself for a very successful day ahead.
Successful people are their own therapists. But it takes some practice. Don’t worry- when you first implement this habit, all you need to do is write one sentence each day. The mind will learn how to open up some more.
Start to meditate
Stigma aside, meditation is not some metaphysical concept. It is simply a technique for observing the mind.
Through practice, which doesn’t need to take more than 10 minutes per day, you will learn why you react a certain way in a given circumstance, and broaden your perception of self and the world.
Increasing self-awareness, you will do much better in life and get familiar with a more balanced state of mind. The benefits are felt even within a week.
You can check apps like world renowned Headspace, that sets you up for a 10 days free trial.
As you can see, successful people are not cut from a different cloth. And I understand this all too intimately. Following these techniques for well over a year now, I find my life to be balanced, rich with purpose, and meaningful relationships. I feel healthy and content, and understand how all of that can turn upside down if I stop doing the things that got me there in the first place.
That’s the key with experiencing success- you have to be diligent enough and consistent with your routines. These tips are not responsible for everything that goes well in my life, but they sure do contribute a fair share.
Start implementing them in your life and you will witness the same symptomatic curve most people do, and feel successful and more content with yourself.