The 4 Unusual Morning Rituals to Win the Day

Toni Koraza

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Every successful individual has a morning routine.

Morning is arguably the most important part of the day. The best days are the ones that finish with the hot buzz of happiness. But to get there, you’ll need to wake up with a bang.

Unusual morning routine:

  • Make your bed (<3min)
  • Stoic Expectations Check (<5min)
  • Ten Minute Journal (<10min)
  • MSE workout (<18min)

I’ve compiled this list through years of trial and error. And I’ve studies schedules of media personalities, billionaires, and overall admirable individuals. Every successful individual has a morning routine.

I’ll provide a list of four recommendations to set the day right. Your motto should be:

What starts right can finish even better.

I’ve managed to hit all four points every morning since the pandemic began, but I can’t say the same for earlier years. My average is three things every morning. And that’s ok. You don’t have to be perfect every day, because life is not all cherries and rainbows. You’ll have a morning emergency from time to time, and your days won’t be the same.

1. Make Your Bed (<3min)

Admiral William H. McRaven details this profound truth in his book about minor, yet powerful daily habits.

He detailed the experience of Navy SEAL training. Making your bed in the morning will give you a small sense of pride and accomplishment, and you’ll finish your first task. Completing a task will encourage you to finish another, and then another. Your actions will compound, and by the end of the day, you’ll have a tidy bed waiting for you.

“If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed.”

Don’t fret about making it perfect. The goal is to finish a task. If you’re not a master tucker, just aim to place your pillows symmetrically and cover them with your blanket.

I’ll expand on this idea. If you don’t want to make your bed, finish a small task. Clean your desk, fold the clothes, or tidy up your organizing units. The goal is to get that boost after completing a task. You’ll be hit by feel-good endorphins. And the rest of the day will come as served.

2. Set Your Expectations Right (<5min)

Waking up in the morning can also be your wake-up call for the day.

Most of your frustrations come from failed expectations, Stoic philosophers argue. Seneca says that anger is just another miscalculated expectation and that accepting daily outcomes will lead to a serene life. Marcus Aurelius agrees and details this philosophy in his book Meditations.

“When you wake up in the morning, tell yourself: the people I deal with today will be meddling, ungrateful, arrogant, dishonest, jealous, and surly. They are like this because they can’t tell good from evil.” — Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

Read stoic wisdom for 5 minutes, or tell yourself that you’ll accept the outcome. Think about what can go wrong and prepare yourself to take it.

We can’t escape our expectations all the time. If you accidentally trip over your shoelaces, you might feel distraught pretty fast. You never even thought you’d be that stupid, and you never expected to trip over yourself. The same happens when someone cuts you in traffic. The urge to start yelling and cursing intensifies.

You can learn to accept the outcome, and then act on stuff you can change. Don’t let your anger make decisions for you. And learn to leave the stuff that is out of your reach to higher powers.

You can take the umbrella, but you can’t stop the rain.

3. Ten-minute journal (<10min)

A high number of astonishing individuals journal or write in the morning. Journal routine is personal and you can tailor it to your needs. You can also record yourself. The goal is to vomit what’s on your mind and focus on the important stuff.

I usually do this while still in the room, right after 5-minute Stoicisms. My mind is ready for sprint writing. I write fiction for 15minuts that digests my worries and expectations. Others write down stuff they’re grateful for in their life. And some brainstorm the fears and solutions for the day.

Another task finished. And another hit of feel-good endorphins. Another win for the day.

You're on a roll.

If you’re writing fiction or a diary, you’ll have a book sooner than later. Many authors finish whole novels with the help of a simple morning routine. Stephen King writes 2,000 words for breakfast.

4. Meditate, Strech, and Light Excercise (<18min)

I bumped all three into one category to save your reading time. Each one of these could be its own story. But you can treat it as one thing in this morning routine. Let me explain.

Usually, after I finish making the bed, accept the day, and journaling, I’ll walk downstairs and follow a short Yoga video with my girlfriend. We use the app Down Dog, but you can try whatever stretching exercise works for you.

I’ll do Yoga for 10Mintues, then I’d jump over a rope until exhaustion and hit a series of push-up or squats. And finally, we’ll both meditate for 5minutes. We’ll change the meditation styles ranging from TM to vipassana, depending on how we feel. Meditation alone can help you recalibrate life, and the upsides are both documented and supported.

Individuals from Jerry Senfield to Arnold Schwarzenegger boost about the value of meditation. Jacko Wilkins agrees that short burst reps will wake you up in the morning. And stretching is essential for blood flow and posture. Chin up!

Even if you don't like to work out, you can enjoy staying healthy and feeling good in the long run.

Why should you build a morning routine?

The whole ritual is usually 40minutes long, depending on the morning. The days that I finish the entire routine are often the best and most productive days. I’m composed and ready to kick-ass. My body experiences less stress. And I look younger than when I was twenty.

Unusual morning ritual:

  • Make your bed
  • Stoic expectation check
  • Ten-minute journal
  • MSE workout

Rise and shine!

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