I think we can learn from short distance runners that a good start is important. Every day we all start off in the blocks, some get ahead, while others lag behind.

The way you begin your day can have a huge impact on how the rest of it plays out. In light of this, it is imperative that we choose the right activities to begin the day with. Equally important is to stay away from those things that distract you from what’s truly important.

When it comes to waking up, I typically get up later than I desire. This resulted in me not accomplishing my desired results in the morning and left me feeling as if I was behind. I would then spend the rest of the day playing catch up. I am sure this has never happened to you.

This all changed after one of my personal quarterly reviews. As I was reflecting on my life, I realized that in order to get the desired results I wanted, I had to get more accomplished before I began work.

1. Devotional time with God. Since my relationship with God is important to me, my goal is to start off each day by spending time with Him. If you need help with your devotional time you can read this post.

More than any other activity, my quiet time gives me the right focus for the day. Jesus said, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”

2. Connect with your family. When you have school age children, the mornings can seem rushed. Instead of rushing to get out the door in the morning, wake up a little earlier, and incorporate a 5-10 minute healthy breakfast with your family.

Having breakfast together is a great way to connect with your family. This may not be possible in all seasons, but it is a good goal to aim for.

3. Exercise. “Research suggests in terms of performing a consistent exercise habit, individuals who exercise in the morning tend to do better,” says Cedric Bryant, Ph.D., chief science officer with the American Council on Exercise in San Diego. This may not be the best time for everyone, but for many, it will be. If you don’t exercise in the morning, the chance of other activities and responsibilities crowding it out is higher.

It has been shown that exercising in the morning can give you hours of increased focus and energy. Enlist the help of a workout partner if you need extra accountability.

4. Plan out your day. Begin the day being proactive, and choose ahead of time what you want to accomplish. You may want to ask yourself what are the three most important things you need to accomplish in that day. If you don’t prioritize your schedule, someone else will place their priorities in it.

My days are themed ahead of time as a part of my weekly rhythm. I have my days systematically planned ahead of time. You can learn more about how to create a weekly rhythm here.

My life has changed since I started beginning my day on the right foot. I have more energy, focus, and feel better connected in the relationships that matter most.

You will either start the day proactive, or you will go through the day being reactive. While we can’t control everything that happens in the day, we can give ourselves a better opportunity for success by being intentional how we begin the day.

Be on the outlook for an upcoming post about how to become a morning person.

Which activity will you add to your morning routine to get the most out of your day?

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