Machen MacDonald: The 5 a.m. club | TheUnion.com

Machen MacDonald: The 5 a.m. club

Machen MacDonald
Columnist

Learning what makes people tick and what leads them to their success has always been an area of curiosity and passion for me. I am lucky because as I learn the nuances of success, I get to share what I learn with those I come in contact with and therefore spread the wealth and wisdom.

I recently posted a meme on social media which was simply: Make 5 a.m. a habit.

I did so because this is a habit that many high performing people employ in their life. The feedback was interesting.

There were a few that joked in some way they are not a morning person. Others shared how they are part of the 5 a.m. club and how much more productive and happy they feel as a result. The rest were people genuinely interested in how to make it their habit and what kind of morning routine into which to plug.

I'm going to share a simple way you can start to build the 5 a.m. habit.

Many people think setting the alarm for 5 a.m. and forcing themselves to get out of bed, at that time, is the way to do it. Well setting an alarm is part of it. The forcing, we can do without.

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By the way, the 5 a.m. club is not about sleep deprivation. So, the trick is to set your alarm for when you are going to get yourself into bed and lights out allowing you to get your required amount of sleep.

As simple as this is, it is an extremely powerful tool.

The benefits

Setting a time to get to bed helps you plan your day accordingly so you can honor that commitment to yourself. Here are other ways it helps you:

It helps you remain aware and plan out the remainder of your day. i.e., how many hours you have left in the day to do what you want to do.

It guides you with what time you need to start preparing for bed to make sure you are ready on time.

It prevents you from following a string of distractions during nighttime.

It gives you a set time to read (reading something every day is another success habit). If you do read prior going to sleep, make sure whatever the last thing you impress upon your mind, for the day, is positive and uplifting.

It almost guarantees your success for waking up early as your morning success is directly linked to what you do at night.

Tips to try

Here are some hacks to help assure you get out of bed when the alarm goes off at 5 a.m.

Put your alarm across the room so you have to get out of bed to turn it off.

Create something inspiring to do that pulls you out of bed.

Create a power hour morning routine. Include things like meditation, exercise, reading, journaling, visualizing your ideal day.

Set an agreement with an accountability buddy who wants to get up at that time as well and call or text each other when you get up. First one to not do it has to pay a fine.

Set the coffee pot to start brewing at 5:05 a.m. but don't put the carafe in it; forcing you to get to the kitchen to put the carafe in place.

Repeat to yourself as you fall asleep, "I will wake up easily at 5 a.m. and feel well rested and rejuvenated."

Have some fun with this. Find an accountability buddy and start your membership in the 5 a.m. club.

Make it up, make it fun, and get it done!

#1 bestselling author Machen P. MacDonad, CPCC, CCSC is a certified life and business coach with ProBrilliance Leadership Institute in Grass Valley. He helps business people gain more confidence and clarity to live their ideal life. He can be reached at coach@probrilliance.com and 530-273-8000.