The Genius Hour – 3 Steps to a Powerful Morning + Challenge
The Genius Hour – 3 Steps to a Powerful Morning!
The Genius Hour and How Important it is to a Powerful Morning – Do you have a morning routine? Well besides taking a shower, brushing your teeth and maybe having some caffeine? Do you make time for what’s really important to you to start your day off right? What you do first thing in the morning will affect the rest of your day.
The past couple of years I have been getting up earlier and earlier. From 6:10 to 5:45, then 5:30 and eventually 5 AM. Not because I have to but because I want to. Now I don’t even need an alarm clock. My subconscious wakes me up!
The difference between sleeping until the last minute and now, getting up at 5, is that I made a decision about what was important to me. Starting my day with my priorities first, trumped staying up late watching TV shows that aren’t even that good. [ctt_hbox link=”cAB2T” via=”no” ]Most of what we do is routine. If you want a better life, you have to change your habits. [/ctt_hbox]
Why 5 am?
I’ve discovered that there is a quiet connection to my genius zone that isn’t accessible at any other time of the day. This is when the noise and chaos haven’t begun yet, there are no electronic distractions and I’m able to access the greater creative part of me. This is what Monks do, great philosophers, artists, and billionaires who want to be in peak performance every day.
Step 1: MOVE
20 Minutes of Sweaty, Heart-Pumping Exercise
Who needs caffeine when you are an energy creating factory. If you need energy, you have to create it. When you wake up feeling groggy it’s because your body has been dormant. If you get up and start moving you will instantly wake up and have energy.
Now I know everyone has a different idea of what exercise is but all I want you to do is sweat. You can go on a quick jog, do some intense flow yoga, jump on your Peloton bike, do jumping jacks, push-ups and/or burpees for 20 minutes. What you do isn’t the point. It’s stimulating blood flow and energy that’s important.
There are some techniques I’ve learned in Kriya and Kundalini yoga to literally pump your arms while breathing briskly which will decarbonize and recharge your blood with oxygen. This creates more life force called Prana. This is sometimes also called Breath of Fire. Anthony Robbins uses this technique but calls it priming. Either way, you are breathing, sweating and moving your body prior to meditation. Pick your poison.
On the other hand, this doesn’t replace my 7 am workout class I take three times a week for building muscle. This is cardio, essentially, and only 20 minutes. My favorite is jogging around the neighborhood or running on the treadmill. Nothing beats the stillness of fresh morning air, stars still beaming in the night sky and dodging sprinklers every other house!
Step 2: CONNECT
Gratitude, Goals, Visualization, Meditation, Journaling
We are bombarded all day every day. Where is the pause? When is it quiet enough that we can hear our own thoughts? When can we receive creative ideas from the ethers? In the shower, you might say? That’s because that’s the only time you aren’t being overwhelmed with noise, people, to-dos and the chaos of the everyday routines of our busy lives.
[ctt_hbox link=”hwf62″ via=”no” ]When you sit quietly with your eyes closed and allow the pause, peace is what fills you, ideas flood in, your body heals, and you ultimately connect to the greater spiritual part of you. [/ctt_hbox] (This is something I actually like to do before bed as well.)
I write down ten things I’m grateful for. This morning it was starry nights, sprinklers, perfect health, crickets singing, booming business…You get the point. Little ones and big ones are all important. It’s not what you are writing, it is what you are feeling, the energy of gratitude.
Then I write down ten goals in the present tense as if I have already achieved them. You probably already know a few of mine and I’ll be brutally honest and share some: “I am a NY Times best-selling author, the best high-performance female speaker in the world, in the best shape of my life…etc. Have you noticed a pattern here? Why do I keep saying best? More on that next week!
Next, I visualize having achieved those goals in the present tense while deep breathing. I see myself achieving my goals, I feel gratitude for already having accomplished my desires. We’re sitting on the porch of my beach home with my family, watching the sunset, talking about my best seller and enjoying having brought my whole family on vacation to celebrate with me. I see my body in the best shape of my life as I finish a marathon. As I step off the stage, after having given a talk in front of 30,000 people roaring with delight, I know I am in the best speaker in the world. In just a few short moments, you can travel to your future in your mind.
Finally, after a few minutes of gratitude, writing down a few goals and visualizing them, my brain is ready to focus solely on my breathing and surrender. For clarification, meditation is listening, while prayer is talking. I would encourage you to do both in your life but I pray all day during the day. I use this quiet morning time to listen to Life and allow inspiration and ideas to flow to me instead of begging for answers, I am allowing them to pop into my consciousness.
If you have trouble meditating in silence, by all means, listen to a guided meditation on apps like Insight Timer, Headspace or Soulvana. I love guided meditations before bed and to inspire my own meditations.
I always start with a four-count breath with a pause at the top and bottom to slow my heart rate, as well as focus on the breathing and not let my thoughts control me.
Deep Breath in 1-2-3-4, hold, let the breath out 1-2-3-4 pause and repeat. While focusing on breathing as I’m moving into meditation my thoughts are less likely to take over.
I end this 20 minutes of connection with a few minutes of reflection. If you don’t feel confident meditating or have an aversion to sitting quietly, you can start by journaling however I would highly encourage you to learn how to be still and pause.
I frequently use a couple of minutes after a 10-15 minute meditation to write in my journal. I have found that if I ask a question on the paper and then start writing I will discover the answer I was looking for. Whether it is my own intuition or Life guiding me, I don’t know, but I clearly love the result of this time I spend with myself. Side note: this is when I started writing Love Letters to you.
If we let emotions stay in our bodies without pouring them out into a journal they cause dis-ease and become emotional cancer. We need to move through emotions whether it’s one paragraph or 15 pages until we feel better, have the answers we need, or in my case end up writing a blog post. 🙂
Step 3: GROW
Read Books, Listen to Podcasts, Take Courses
If you study any billionaire, you will find out that personal growth is the cornerstone of their life and business. No matter what happens, it’s all good if you grow in the process. Instead of turning on the TV or radio, take 20 minutes a day to feed your mind.
With an endless thirst for knowledge, I could spend all day, every day, listening to podcasts, reading books, watching videos and taking courses. But I found I was having a hard time squeezing this into my already jam-packed schedule as a wife, mother, and entrepreneur with thriving businesses.
[ctt_hbox link=”N8SVC” via=”no” ]Literally, the only way to ensure I am always growing is to make sure it happens first thing every day. [/ctt_hbox] I listen to podcasts while driving or working out, so I spend my morning reading or completing a course I want to take. This is something I can’t do while driving or late in the day when I’m fried and sleepy.
Take your morning back.
I’m not big on screens in the morning so I DO NOT TOUCH MY PHONE if I don’t have to. I certainly don’t check messages, emails, social media or news. This is my genius hour and I want to own it. I don’t want other people’s agendas to precede mine so checking my phone, Slack or jumping on Instagram is the death of my own priorities. The key to a powerful morning is for you to do what YOU want to do, to ensure you will have the BEST day ever, every day. I keep my phone on do not disturb until 8 am. Own your morning.
And let me tell you, I feel superhuman when I’ve spent my “hour of power” as Jack Canfield calls it or do the “5 AM Challenge” as Robin Sharma promotes or the many other high performing success coaches like Tony Robbins with his meditation and exercise routine or Rachel Hollis with 30 minutes of exercise, gratitude and goals.
There are many different morning routines to pick from and of course, you need to do what works for you. But if what you’re doing isn’t working, try my powerful morning method called #geniushour for at least 66 days. 66 days is precisely how long it takes to create a habit that is automated. If you’re like some people, after a couple of days, the result outweighs the pain and it’s already a habit you actually want to do or look forward to like I do.
[ctt_hbox link=”Jb1fc” via=”no” ]The #geniushour challenge starts now and you’re invited to join in the transformation. [/ctt_hbox]
Please tag me @lauralaire on social media and use the hashtag #geniushour to let me know you’re in. I’d love to follow your journey, so also make sure to tag me and hashtag #geniushour every day with DONE so I can keep you accountable.
Please share the #geniushour challenge by forwarding this email and sharing it with your friends on social media. Let’s create a movement that changes the world.
Download Genius Hour to add to your phone.
To YOUR genius,
P.S. My 11-year-old son asked if he could join me this morning so he got up, went for half a jog then joined me for a guided meditation. I asked if he would join me again and he said he’s in for 5 am tomorrow! #noexcuses #geniushour