There is an old saying that goes, “Take care of the days and the years take care of themselves." This quote is as true today as when it was originally written. The concept is so simple, it is often overlooked or dismissed in search of something more advanced or complicated.
In the book The Power of Full Engagement, Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz talk about the importance of developing positive daily rituals. They refer to the fact that long-term success can be directly related to the number of positive rituals an individual has developed.
A good exercise to do is analyze your day. Do it from start to finish. What has become your routine? When do you wake up? What do you eat for breakfast? What books do you read? Do you exercise? Once you’ve done this for a day, better yet, a week, go back and decide if what you are doing is what you should be doing. If it is, keep going. If not, what can you do differently?
Option A - Imagine that our morning ritual is as follows:
- Wake up late
- Rush out the door without breakfast
- Grab a donut on the way to the office while listening to talk radio.
Option B - Now let’s imagine instead that our morning ritual is to:
- Wake up early
- Enjoy a tall glass of water
- Have a brisk workout
- Take time to read some positive literature while enjoying a nutritious breakfast.
How will the rituals of Option A versus Option B affect our lives if repeated over the course of ten years? Ask yourself these questions:
- Physically - how different will I look?
- Emotionally - how will I feel different?
- Professionally - where will I be?
- Spiritually - how centered will I be?
Chances are you can see how different your life would be by just developing a positive morning ritual. Now let’s magnify this concept by imagining a full day ruled by positive rituals. What would it look like?
Write out, in detail, your ideal day. When would you exercise? What would you read? What would you eat? Whom would you spend time with? Where would you live? How would you treat the people around you? The more detail, the better. When you are done, read it daily and do your best to make your perfect day become a reality.
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