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The Awesome Power of Daily Rituals

Tuesday, January 10, 2017 6:48
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The Awesome Power of Daily Rituals written by John Jantsch read more at Duct Tape Marketing

Habits are a powerful force of human nature – for good or for bad.

Much like animals in the wild, our habits cause us to behave in instinctive ways, often overriding knowledge that we should act otherwise.

A lot is asked of you as an entrepreneur, and it’s amazing how easy it is to get knocked off course. Developing and practicing centering routines is one way to stay very true to your plan.

One of the keys to tapping the power of habits is to force habits that serve your goals and effectively push destructive habits aside with daily rituals.

I’m not going to attempt to tackle addictions and other forms of self-sabotage in this post, but I am going to share the details around my morning ritual to start a conversation about elements that might make sense to explore as you design the best way to get the most out of every day.

My Daily Rituals

I know you’ve likely heard most of these elements many times, so I don’t claim any unique advice here, but I do know that the collective power of each element below, practiced consistently allows me to stay creative and get much more of the right kind of work done.

As you’ve probably already learned, there’s no shortage of ways to stay busy, but practicing morning rituals is how you stay busy doing the best things. (Hint: You will not find checking email as one of the necessary morning steps.)

If you would like to use my Daily Planner template, you can download it here.

Free Daily Planner Template Rise early

I’m a morning person, so this one might not be fair to ask, but there’s something magical about that hour when the sun trades places with the dark. I live in a part of the world that gets pretty cold in the winter, so this one gets harder when it’s freezing out.

I like to have my alone time to do most or all of the steps below, so I need an early start to get to it.

Start slow

If I want to be somewhere or doing something at 6 am, I better get up at 5 am. I like to rise and wake slowly without any rush or stress.

Most mornings I put on a pot of water for coffee or tea. Squeeze a lemon into some water and hydrate. See: Benefits of Lemon Water.

Get inspired

I enjoy meditation as part of my routine, but I like to get inspired before I start that practice so I usually read something short and inspirational with the hope of finding a word I can use as my intention for the day.

I’m not always successful in this endeavor, but I find that pegging my thoughts and actions to some intention is a great way for me to make meaning every day.

An example of this kind of reading for me is Wayne Dyer’s take on the verses of the Tao Te Ching, but there are many options. For me, the key is that it sparks a creative idea.

Examples of words for me for the last days have been – flow, surrender, calm, and greatness.

Breathe

I sit for 10-15 minutes in meditation. I don’t adhere to a form or style, but I do try to bring my word or intention for the day into this practice.

The benefits of meditation are fast becoming accepted in every mainstream corner of daily life – bringing about stress relief, unlocking creativity, lowering blood pressure. For me, it’s kind of like taking out the trash, it seems to clear out the clutter, and it’s terribly energizing.

If you’ve tried meditation and just can’t seem to stick with it, there’s a chance you’re trying too hard to make something magical happen. Many of the benefits of meditation are realized long after the sitting part.

There are many books and aids for meditation and even apps that feature guided meditations like these from Ananda featuring Deepak Chopra.

My advice though is just sit and pay attention to your breathe, and you’ll enjoy the benefits.

Write

Of course, I do a lot of writing as part of my work, but so does every entrepreneur – whether they realize it or not. Or, they should do a lot of writing as writing unlocks so many other core practices such as thinking, speaking, pitching, convincing, leading, teaching, and storytelling.

Writing, however, is a bit like a frozen stream in winter. Unless it flows a bit each day, it gets damned up.

Keep it flowing by writing every morning.

I rarely keep or use anything I write in this practice, but it certainly helps me stay creative.

One practice I adopted from some advice given by James Altucher is something I now call “idea storming.” I come up with a topic like – how could I better promote my podcast or what products could I create or what words or questions could use or ask in X situation and then I simply write everything I can think of. I aim for ten ideas each morning.

I do keep of this in a journal and I’m amazed how I can flip back a few weeks and find some real nuggets of clarity and ideas to keep me chugging.

The real point of the exercise is to practice thinking creatively not to actually create, but the practice pays off big when you get stuck.

I do all of this analog in a bound notebook. There are note taking, to-do list making, and journaling apps aplenty, but I like to use pen, ink, and paper.

I’ve developed a template for daily planning if you would like to download and use it for your own brand of morning ritual.

Move

Everyone knows that exercise is good, but it’s ridiculously necessary for entrepreneurs. We sit on computers for hours and hours, sometimes work crazy days trying to make stuff happen and store insidious levels of stress in all corners of our bodies.

Exercise whacks away at all of these things and gives such a payoff in productivity that I think it saves time instead of takes time. (See The Math of Exercise)

There are so many forms of beneficial exercise that it probably doesn’t even matter what you do but my morning routine includes yoga, running, lifting and biking. I’m pretty consistent with 5-6 mornings a week.

Evening

So, I’ve covered my morning routine, but in reality, the morning starts the evening before. How you prepare for the next day will likely dictate the success you have. My daily ritual includes some review of my day where I’ll record something I’m grateful for, something I learned and any other notes about the day.

John Lee Dumas has a nice journal for goal setting that includes an evening practice that includes thinking about what you accomplished during the day, what you are proud, and what you are thankful for.

I think this is a great way to prepare for the day ahead and might even make an awesome practice to do with a roommate, spouse or child.

Weekly, monthly, quarterly

Daily planning is a must, but you’ve also got to back up and look a little further down the road and that’s where adopting routines to sculpt your weeks, months, and quarters must come into play.

Some people talk about 3-5 year plans, but most entrepreneurs have trouble looking beyond 90 days and keeping focus on the direction of the ever-evolving nature of the business.

In future posts, I’ll outline my process for planning in these larger chunks and share templates you might helpful for this process.

I would love to hear about your daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly planning rituals.

If you would like to use my Daily Planner template, you can download it here.

Free Daily Planner Template[/thrive

Bio: John Jantsch is a marketing consultant and author of Duct Tape Marketing[www.ducttapemarketing.com] and The Referral Engine[www.referralenginebook.com] and the founder of the Duct Tape Marketing Consultant Network.[www.ducttapemarketingconsultant.com]



Source: https://www.ducttapemarketing.com/daily-rituals/

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