First Things First

Some things are better touched as early as the first sign of daylight. And whenever your eyes open, for those who prefer to work under the moonlight.

It’s rare for me when I sit for an entire hour and write. But on those special occasions, when I write enough to potentially consider publishing at some point, I feel a genuine sense of accomplishment.

But more often than not you’ll find me drifting every 15 minutes, like a ball of sand sailing on an open coconut from Miami Beach to the shores of a foreign place, like Fiji or the Turks and Caicos Islands.

It isn’t till I look at the time, then at my work, and compare the two that I notice an uneasy balance. As usual, the scale tips in favor of time, and the individual that capitalizes on it.

I’m aware of the notifications that shake my devices, the relationships that require attention, and the spoiled cotton ball Maltese that roams my kitchen floors and her never-ending desire to fling her toys across the dining room table.

This happens often, so it would make sense, to me at least, to accept it for what it is and focus our efforts on what’s most important when our willpower is at its peak, and that’s as soon as we wake up.

This is when it becomes easier to form habits. Whether they be good or bad.

Use This Willpower as Momentum 

Now that you know your will power is highest in the morning, try to focus on productivity. 

For me, that means:

  • Continuing or creating a story
  • Revisiting and revising my to-do list
  • Meditating
  • Exercising 

The focus should be, in my opinion, on the responsibilities that hold the most weight. Meaningful ones. And for me, it’s those four I listed above. 

There’s more than enough

Its also interesting to note that if we believe we have an abundant amount of willpower, we can exert more throughout our day.

In a study done by the Journal of Personality and Social Physiology, they found that people who believed this exhibit more better self control after demanding tasks.

This means better self-regulation (better time management and less procrastination, unhealthy eating, and impulsive spending).

Use the early morning momentum on urgent responsibilities, the things that require critical thinking, like walking your dog and trying to remain understanding while she wraps herself in a knot with her leash.

As soon as I wake up, I know that I should write. To spend time away from my phone. Any owner of a Note device will tell you how daunting this is.

I would imagine it feels the same as dropping off my kids at school every morning, knowing they should be there, that’s it’s the right thing to do, but man, do I miss them.

And if you feel differently about this then maybe you’ve gone mad, or you’ve realized that I have no kids.

Anyway, it isn’t easy, but I try. 

Since willpower is highest in the morning, I think it’ll be a good idea to prioritize the night before. Maybe even sooner. 

Make a list of what you want to get done, and begin with the most important first.

Sleep, Sunlight, and Love

There was a time when I couldn’t sleep at night. I read somewhere that sunlight can help with this, that it can reset my sleep cycle. I needed both, vitamin D and a hard reset.

So far it’s worked for me. I sleep better, and I’m actually getting a full eight hours. I can’t remember the last time I slept through the entire night.

It could be that or that I’ve met someone and all the love juices are rushing through my brain, like a tsunami of serotonin and dopamine crashing through my body, flooding me entirely so that I have no choice but to drop my guard and fall asleep.

Whatever it is, it has helped me sleep better, which in turn has allowed me to wake up with more energy to exert throughout the day.

I can get used to this.

My time with strengthening will power has fluctuated over the years. 

Some days I don’t want to do anything but lay in bed and scroll social media. But on other days, the rare ones, I run through my checklist before my eyes are open, focusing my energy on what matters most to me.

Author: Jona

Jonathan is a Health and Wellness Content Writer. Devoting his time to increase exposure to the general public of the importance of living a healthier lifestyle, both inside and out. His primary goal is to enrich the lives of those he's fortunate enough to reach. Jona has more than five years of writing experience with a little over a decade spent on learning the fundamentals of health and wellness.