How Do You Start Your Day?

I have recently started arriving at the office shortly after 5am!

I find that I am most productive in the early morning before distractions kick in. It allows me time to focus on goals and train my mind.

This video shows some of my morning routine.

Please leave a comment and share your routine or what you took away from this vid…

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45 Responses to How Do You Start Your Day?

  1. Ted Payne June 10, 2010 at 9:25 am #

    Love this vid man – great style! Nice routine too.

    • Justin Popovic June 10, 2010 at 10:37 am #

      Thanks! This is a pretty new routine but it is working wonders so far.

  2. Coronation Street June 10, 2010 at 10:08 am #

    This is awesome! Everyone should film the first hour of their day and compare how much they get done! I bet you win hands down!

    Nice vid dude!

    • Justin Popovic June 10, 2010 at 10:38 am #

      Thanks. I don’t know about hands down, there are some really motivated people out there! But I at least hope to inspire others to get fired up early and let it carry them through their day.

  3. Brad Gosse June 10, 2010 at 10:14 am #

    Love this video man. awesome and it fires me up!

  4. Jay Kraft June 10, 2010 at 11:09 am #

    Great post. I agree that the most productivity gets accomplished when there is hardly anyone around. It’s hard to break out of the sheets before 5am but once it becomes second nature, you don’t have to think about it. Like the daily goal setting.. something I could stand to do more frequently

    • Justin Popovic June 10, 2010 at 11:46 am #

      I find that if you get emotionally psyched about your biggest goals, you have no problem getting up early since you KNOW you are moving closer and closer to your vision.

  5. Sean Shapcott June 10, 2010 at 11:15 am #

    Wow Awesome Video Justin!

    I’m curious as to how I look. I think I’m going to record myself today LOL. What did you use to record yourself?

    You are obviously very focused and driven to succeed. I think if you can maintain that you will succeed without a doubt.

    Btw It’s too bad guys who think and are motivated like you work for themselves. Damn I wish I’d come in and see my entire staff doing that πŸ˜‰ That would be so bad ass.

    • Sean Shapcott June 10, 2010 at 11:31 am #

      Btw you seriously need to add disqus LOL i’d comment way more πŸ™‚

      • Justin Popovic June 10, 2010 at 11:45 am #

        Thanks for the comment Sean. I will be adding Disqus very soon as you aren’t the first to say this πŸ™‚

        It would be amazing to see a staff working in a motivated manner like many entrepreneurs do. It would be even more amazing to meet the leader who was able to inspire them to do so!

  6. Michael Giesen June 10, 2010 at 11:55 am #

    motivational music…i second that, anytime i’m working on projects or otherwise i’m always hitting up the music. great video justin, i look forward to the next one!

  7. Edward June 10, 2010 at 12:54 pm #

    sweet video! It has been so long since I woke up that early but I do remember I was much more focused and productive during the first hours of the day before your mind wanders and is dealing with the 100 other things that you have to do. This video gave me a pump just from watching and I plan to wake up 1 hour earlier. I like your routine πŸ™‚

    • Justin Popovic June 10, 2010 at 1:01 pm #

      COOL! Glad it inspired you to start your day earlier. After doing it for a few weeks I already find it really easy to wake up super early. Funny how the body can adjust to any siuation.

  8. Chris Eh Young June 10, 2010 at 5:05 pm #

    This is a great video man. If I had an office to go to at 6 am I probably would.

    I started being an early riser last summer and found that I went in a seasonal pattern. As the days got shorter and the sun came up later, so did I. I found it harder to do. That’s just me and I know for a fact that you are considerably more disciplined than I am.

    Perhaps this video will be the kick in the pants I need to start making better use of my mornings. One of these days i’ll film my morning routine for you. It’s really not all that glamorous, consists mostly of getting four kids ready for school.

    When they finish school in a few weeks, I will put the hammer down and i’ll check in with you online in the mornings to keep me honest. Deal?

    • Justin Popovic June 10, 2010 at 5:24 pm #

      Sounds like a plan. It can be a one on one challenge. See who can start earlier and make the first non-automated tweet of the day πŸ™‚

  9. Shelly Sargent June 10, 2010 at 10:29 pm #

    I love this! But I gotta say – there isn’t enough coffee in Caledon to get me up that early every day…. I do my best work after 9pm… always have. Like the process though! Think I need a giant whiteboard… hmmm…

    • Justin Popovic June 11, 2010 at 6:34 am #

      LOL. The early starts were definitely a contributing factor to me going back to coffee after a temporary hiatus. Thanks for the comment, I definitely recommend a chalk board or white board. Comes in very handy.

  10. Jill Popovic June 11, 2010 at 10:11 am #

    Cool video Justin, loved it!!! Do you write out your trigger words every day?? Such a great idea, then they’re right in front of you all day. I’m going to try that!!
    PS. I’ve never seen anyone chew as fast as you’re chewing when you’re eating that apple!! hahahha

    • Justin Popovic June 11, 2010 at 10:24 am #

      The funny part is that i didn’t speed up the apple chewing part. That was actually normal speed. I just love apples that much

  11. Dia June 11, 2010 at 6:53 pm #

    Excellent video Justin, keep up the good work πŸ™‚

  12. Josh Lipovetsky June 12, 2010 at 7:08 am #

    That was a great video Justin! I hope it gives people a lot of new ideas! I really like the trigger board too! What are some of your favorite inspirational artists/songs?

    Josh Lipovetsky.

    PS: I absolutely loved the apple chewing part!! πŸ™‚ Thanks for that!

    • Justin Popovic June 12, 2010 at 10:11 am #

      Thanks Josh. I don’t have a lot of inspirational music I listen to, it is usually just some good upbeat music I listen to after going through some personal development recordings. During this video, I was listening to the audiobook of Psycho Cybernetics by Maxwell Maltz.

  13. Sibyl - alternaview June 16, 2010 at 6:09 am #

    Justin: Great video and approach. I think starting off your morning is key and we need to find an approach that works for us that we can consistently apply. Your routine looks great. 5AM is early, but I couldn’t agree more that some of the best work happens in those morning hours.

    • Justin Popovic June 16, 2010 at 6:20 am #

      Thanks Sibyl. I totally agree. 5am seemed really early at first but it has become almost second nature. I am writing this comment at 7:20 am and I have already completed over 2 hours of amazingly productive work. The same amount of work that would likely take me 4 hours once 9 or 10am rolls around (due to distractions).

      Thanks for stopping by πŸ™‚

  14. Tracy Brown June 16, 2010 at 6:31 am #

    Justin, this is fabulous! Totally pumped me up – and I was dragging a bit. πŸ™‚

    PS: You reminded me a bit of Peter Gabriel in the video Sledgehammer. (Compliment!)

    • Justin Popovic June 16, 2010 at 6:34 am #

      Haha! Awesome. I’m glad this motivated you. I actually made the video to motivate myself so I’m glad it can help others along the way πŸ™‚

  15. Dan June 17, 2010 at 9:08 am #

    Great video man! I love it πŸ™‚ I would like to do something similar once I give another at blogging in English. It looks pretty funny at times but I like it.

    How I start my day: I have a glass of water, I make a big smoothie (generally bananas, blueberries and spinach), I check e-mail, FB and my blog traffic and go through my goals and what I want to do. From there, I actually need to begin now, since I haven’t been very organized until now. Basically, what I plan to do, starting tomorrow, is get up at 7, do all the stuff I mentionned in half an hour, then go to the parc, practice Taijiquan from 8 to 10, then listen to some personal development podcast or coaching radio show while I walk thourgh the park, and then head to wherever I’m supposed to be to continue my day. Luckily, I don’t have or need a job right now, and I plan on becoming a coach too, so if that works out, my scheddule could work.

    • Justin Popovic June 17, 2010 at 11:23 am #

      Bananas and blueberries make sense…but spinach???? Wow you are hardcore πŸ™‚
      I like your proposed routine. Sounds like a well balanced, well rounded day! Good luck with it and come back again. Would love to hear more comments from you

  16. Bob June 17, 2010 at 12:29 pm #

    Interesting video. Also, please don’t take this comment the wrong way as I enjoy your videos. I had to see your video twice because as there was something that didn’t feel right to me. I think it was the fact that I didn’t know what your goals were on the huge sheet. I know what your trigger words were because they were on the blackboard but even with that information there was still something missing for me. Then it hit me. While all the things you did was to motivate you for the day, I didn’t know what action you were taking to reach those goals. Your video stated that you start working on content creation. So is your goal to create a video blog or a topic for a written blog? Is your goal to create good content to get more visitors to your website and hope that people contact you for coaching? Is that your business model? Do you make any calls to XYZ company to offer services? Are you hoping for business or are you acting to generate business? You don’t make any sales if you don’t make any sales calls. Personally I would have liked to see what “action” you were taking for the day. And why not do all this stuff the night before? Is writing short term goals and trigger words necessary every morning? Do your goals really change from day to day? It seems like your doing this morning routine to prepare yourself for something that you really don’t want to be doing. Do you need to be motivated every day?
    IMO, it seems that you are too focused on your goals. You write short term goals, image the goals and have trigger words for your goals. Goals are important but don’t make a career out of it. Goals do help and they always change. I would love to see you take action right from the get go. Write down the actions for the day.
    Try something different. Based on your goals right now just take action for several weeks or even months and see what happens. Anyway, I’m just trying to throw some things out there to help out.

    • Justin Popovic June 17, 2010 at 12:57 pm #

      Hey Bob. Wow, awesome comment. Probably the most engaging comment I have ever received on this site.

      I’ll start by saying this was definitely intended to be a motivational video…get people going in the morning. I captured what I do for the first 90-120 minutes on an average day. I then spend 8-12 hours per day taking action as you have suggested. I guess this leads to an even more powerful future blogpost, me showing myself in action!!

      Is writing short term goals and trigger words every morning necessary? Depends on the person. I spend no more than a few minutes on this task but it helps me keep my intentions very clear in my mind so that I can remain focused and sharp. I don’t always write my goals out on a huge sheet, I sometimes just jot them down on a text file that I keep on my laptop. The point is, I want to constantly reinforce my goals to my mind so that they become an assumed reality. I have used this technique over and over in my life and it works famously.

      In terms of content creation. I try to create content almost every day for various initiatives I am running. The videos on this blog are one area of content creation. I also write a column for a paper. I run a WordPress Coaching program and I am constantly creating educational content for my members. Content creation consumes probably 70% of my time.

      I do not make sales calls. I do make sales without making sales calls. I use social networking, partners, affiliates and various internet marketing strategies to make sales. The big goal I am working on right now is to grow my WordPress Coaching program to 1000 members. I am using short term goals of 100 members at a time to get there.

      Finally, regarding taking action from the get go. This doesn’t work for me. It is exactly why I start my days at 5am. I like to take those first 2 hours for self development. I study business books and personal development books. It gives me motivation but it also helps me generate ideas for my business. I am usually in full action mode by 7am and I am very clear and focused about what I want to accomplish that day.

      Thanks again. I hope to see more commentary from you.

  17. Stan Young June 20, 2010 at 1:29 am #

    I think you might of missed your second calling budding film maker!
    As you know with me I am also an early morning person. Its a great way to illustrate how you get motivated in the mornings I would love to be that disciplined. I like your artistic off beat approach. Keep up the great work.

    • Justin Popovic June 21, 2010 at 7:48 am #

      Thanks Stan. Yeah I wanted to try something a little different with this blog post and based on the number of comments, I think I have found a way to intrigue people. Perhaps more movie style posts? πŸ™‚

  18. Karen June 20, 2010 at 12:36 pm #

    Hi Justin,

    I must admit that early rising comes in fits and starts with me. I find that if I’m really motivated and have a purpose for that day, then I can get up no matter how early it is. If it’s just for work, then I wake up to the alarm clock. If it’s something that I really want to do, I get up way before the clock goes off and am ready to start my day.

    I would admit that it definitely takes discipline for becoming an early riser. But, once you have this habit down pat, you’ll notice a tremendous increase in productivity.

    Thanks for the video!


    • Justin Popovic June 21, 2010 at 7:51 am #

      Hey Karen. I find I’m the same way in terms of waking up. When I’m excited about something, getting out of bed is easy. I really enjoy this morning routine now which is why waking up early has become very easy for me to do. And you are right…. my productivity has never been better so it works out well.

  19. blake Erickson July 6, 2010 at 8:06 am #

    I really enjoyed this video. I’m going to try writing my short term goals out on huge paper like you did.
    I came upon your video as I was waiting this morning for my ipod to sync some brian tracy. For the past few months I haven’t really had a morning routine. It was more stay up until 2 – 4 in the morning every night. It just wasn’t working for me, and was getting really warn out. Maybe it’s because I finally quit drinking caffeine and was listening to my body, but lately I’ve been sleeping at 10pm and waking up at 5:30am. I think it is working much better and so far I’m able to get a lot more done.

    • Justin Popovic July 6, 2010 at 8:23 am #

      Hey Blake. Fellow Brian Tracy fan!
      I tried quitting caffeine but that habit did not stick. Truth is, I love the coffee too much. I try to make up for it with other disciplines like healthy eating and working out! Glad to hear that getting up early has rejuvenated you. I woke up at 5:08 this morning after going non stop for 20 hours yesterday. It was STILL easy to get up early because I was excited about where I was going. If you can continue getting excited and having big goals for the day, you will have no problem keeping this routine.
      Thanks or stopping by. Cheers.

  20. Michel J. Gagnon July 9, 2010 at 6:16 am #

    That’s a great idea. You cannot be more concrete than that. If an image is worth a thousand words, this video is worth a few thousand more. Thanks for the idea and inspiration.

    • Justin Popovic July 9, 2010 at 6:28 am #

      Thanks Michel. Really appreciate the feedback. I’m following you on Twitter now πŸ™‚

  21. David July 12, 2010 at 1:56 pm #

    Hey Justin,

    I just read your article on Marc & Angel and it inspired me. Also the video on the morning routine is great. But you look a bit exhausted. Is it the time or do you just get insufficient sleep because of waking up 5am? (no insult!)

    • Justin Popovic July 12, 2010 at 2:01 pm #

      Hey David. None taken πŸ™‚
      I think that might just be how I look lol. I know the day I shot that video I had pulled a very long week and it was a Friday morning. I usually have more rest than I did that week. Probably explains the tired look.
      Thanks for stopping by

  22. Daniel Wood July 23, 2010 at 6:59 am #

    Finally, a guy like me. I’d love to meet you someday, man πŸ˜€
    Daniel Wood recently posted..Attraction By Association

    • Justin Popovic July 23, 2010 at 7:30 am #

      Cool! Likewise. Let me know if you are ever in the Toronto area.

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