The hours between 5 am and 10 am are magic. They are your most uninterrupted, most productive, most accurate, most effective, and most inspired. Here’s how to make the most of them and why it matters.
Schedule Success Hours
Tackle your most important work first. Think about the work that enhances your quality of life, makes your day qualify as a success, or gives you a confidence boost. Think about the work that requires a high degree of brainpower, has the most significant impact, or has tangible benefits that motivate you.
Now pick your top three and schedule a “success hour” for each during this 5–10 am morning block. For example, schedule one hour of writing, one hour of working out, and one hour of building your business daily. Make your success hours non-negotiable and take full advantage.
You may say three hours doesn’t seem like enough, but consider that five hours each week towards your top three goals is not only enough to make notable progress, it’s the consistency required to become elite at what you do.
Moreover, if you find yourself in the zone, stay there if your schedule allows. An hour is a minimum, but there is no maximum.
Finally, save the zone-out tasks, like housework, laundry, yardwork, email, and social media until after you’ve completed your three success hours. Your energy likely lulls in the afternoon, so after lunch might be a good time to tackle these necessary but often mindless tasks.
Expand Your Day
To make success hours stick, you’ve got to do what you can do the night before, so you can dive right in first thing and preserve your agenda. That might mean prepping in advance, outlining a project, ordering supplies, or anticipating stakeholder priorities. It also might mean getting more rest to be at your best or waking earlier.
One simple method to master time is to connect with someone in a different time zone and use them as your real or virtual accountability buddy. For example, as someone located in Denver, who regularly travels to both coasts, I visualize my morning starting in midtown Manhattan and my day ending in Santa Monica, at Shutters.
Because I know what that looks like, sounds like, feels like, and even smells and tastes like, it’s easy for me to jump-start and power through my day to expand time.
In today’s world, you aren’t limited to business hours in your time zone. Sometimes imagining my accountability buddy already in her morning routine on the east coast or capping off a successful day on the west coast is enough to remind me of life beyond the clock.
Use Stolen Time
There is only one you and you can only do what you can do. Reality is a thing. However, if you’re clear about what you want, and know what you have to do day-to-day, you can strike a balance between making the most of right now, honoring your obligations, and achieving something greater. And that’s enough.
Hold the vision of what you want for your life, of the better world you want to influence, but enjoy what you have right now, and let that joy infuse your journey.
Designing your life isn’t just about striving or aspiration, it’s about realizing your potential, tapping into your purpose, having fun, making your moments meaningful, feeling the confidence of intentional productivity, and easing into effortlessness.
Effortlessness is freedom. It’s an uncomplicated and fluid approach to living well. It takes work to get there, but the payoff is a lifetime of balance, grace, and abundance. The most crucial step is mastering your morning routine. It is the one thing that makes it all possible.