What do you do before breakfast? I was checking my email today hoping to get through this task easily to move on to more important issues. Usually I just click and delete, click and delete. This time it seemed that everything I wanted to click and delete sounded interesting.
This is good and bad at the same time.
On the positive side, as a person who makes a living coaching and giving advice I am constantly on the lookout for great ideas to share with my clients. I get those ideas everywhere including emails and articles that come across my desk. I love to put together random ideas to build a solution to a problem.
On the negative side, it takes so much time, time I do not have. Between clients and writing, I have limited free time to explore ideas and read.
I do not have enough time to savor this abundance of riches. Perhaps you have the same situation?
It got me wondering how successful people balance all their responsibilities so I Googled it and found an interesting article, “12 Things Successful People do before Breakfast” by Jenna Goudreau in Business Insider blog based on the book “What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast” by Laura Vanderkam.
It boils down to organization. If we want to get everything done and have time to read and learn, we have to have a system.
Here are a few of the 12 things successful people do before breakfast.
- They wake up early. I get up about 6am and am at my desk at 7am. I have the most energy and can really attack my to-do list. But according to the article, this makes me a slacker. Pepsi CEO Indra Nooyi is up at 4am and at the office by 7am and Disney CEO Bob Iger gets up at 4:30am to read. Imagine what I can get done if I got up an hour earlier?
- They exercise early. That makes sense. We have the most energy early in the morning and the longer we wait to exercise the more likely this important task will fall off the list. Besides, exercise is a great way to get more energy so we can get up earlier!
- They prioritize. They work on the most important projects before other people get up so they can be assured of quality time to address hard issues.
- They work on their personal passions first thing in the morning before being distracted. Actually I understand this one. When I was writing The Interview Doctor’s three books I wrote in the very early morning before my family awoke. It was quiet with few distractions.
- They plan and strategize in the morning. Makes sense. Investing some time to create a solid plan helps keep me on track in the heat of the battle. Right now I am kind of a mess so perhaps it is time to invest in a plan review so I can reprioritize to get the most important items done.
- They meditate. I have never been able to do this. My mind is going a million miles an hour but the most successful people figure out a way to meditate or pray to center themselves for the rush of the day. Some of my friends so this every morning and swear it helps. Perhaps I should try again.
What I take away from this research is if I want to be successful (and find time to read this fascinating articles I receive)? I need to prioritize better, be sure to get my exercise in the morning before I get to my desk and get better organized so I work on the most important tasks first before I get distracted. A little meditation to clear my head wouldn’t hurt either.
This advice works for job seekers and career professionals. How do these tips stack up to your daily schedule? Are you set up to be successful? Is your TO DO list a mile long with no end in sight? What will it take to achieve your goals? Do you even set daily, weekly and monthly goals?