The Morning Habit that is Killing Your Results

flylady.gif

When I was in High School my mom was obsessed with a blog called FlyLady. FlyLady (aka Marla Cilley) is an OG blogger from the late 90's who specializes in helping you organize your home and establish simple morning routines for keeping it clean. 

My family of course teased my mom about it, but with four kids making a constant mess, I now totally get it. I've also admittedly called her numerous times for tips, because while the dishes seemed to do themselves at home, I've learned this is not actually the case in grown-up life.

(I have to do them myself everyday... AND clean the bathroom?! Ughh)  

But it wasn't until I was well into my corporate career that I realized the real power of FlyLady's morning methods. It wasn't JUST about keeping your home clean, it was about setting up your day, and more importantly, your environment for success.

It also helped you train yourself to do a task out of habit, not because you felt motivated to do so (I mean, cleaning the toilet is never "fun", but when you have the habit of wiping it down in the morning, it takes less than 5 minutes and it's always clean!).

I realized after successfully curating my own 15 minute routine (had to be short, not a morning person), that it could be expanded to health and fitness goals as well. 

But it only works if you do it.

Like with anything, you have to actually use the helpful tool you create if you want to see results. On days I packed workout clothes and brought a healthy snack to work, I would skip the afternoon donut holes, and I'd go to the gym, even if just for a quick run.

On days I didn't do these simple morning checklist items, I'd have almost zero chance of succeeding with either.

When I started coaching and learning more about the correlation between solid habits and better results, I noticed that my clients had similar successes and failures with it. 

But why? What caused us to stick to this routine on some mornings, but not on others if it was so helpful? After some digging (into both my routine and my clients), 9 times out of 10 the reason was the same on "off" days...

...we were looking at our cell phones first thing. 

106b43cef9f01f1bc2eb69e002b60c9d.png

Most of us start off our day with an iPhone alarm.

The alarm goes off, we turn it off, and then promptly start to scroll (I mean, gotta clear out all those banner notifications right!?). We either go straight for our email, or we flip over to social media to see what happened overnight (because, gotta stay up to date!). 

Unless you are a surgeon where realtime responses are literally life and death, most emails and absolutely 100% of social media updates can wait.

When you give your attention to your phone first, it not only steals minutes from your morning, it steals your mental and emotional focus as well. This usually translates into the difference between setting your day up for success or setting it up for failure. 

It honestly takes practice, we've been conditioned to check our phones chronically, but it is well worth the productivity payoff. 

And always remember to follow FlyLady's three life rules as well: 

  1. Don’t sweat the small stuff; what doesn’t matter, doesn’t matter.

  2. Laugh everyday. Even if it is at yourself.

  3. Love like there is no tomorrow.

***

Ready to stick to your goals more consistently? Try adopting a better (and non-negotiable) morning routine. 

Identify 3-5 short daily tasks that will help you stay on track and stick with them no matter what! This can be anything from making your bed, to packing workout clothes for later. 

I suggest doing them in the exact same order each day (sounds crazy, but it works). There is no right or wrong task, it's totally up to you and what you find helpful! 

Don't allow yourself to look at your phone until these tasks are complete. You'll find that they don't take long, and you will almost always be in a better mental state to tackle the day and stay on track with your goals. 

***

What about you? Do you have any tried and true morning rituals that you swear by? Comment below and let me know!