My mother always used to say “Start as you mean to continue”.

The wonderful gift we receive each morning is a blank canvas on which to paint our day.

So, I’m curious, what are the first things you put on that canvas?

In short, what is your morning routine?

Some people start with their inbox, others with a favourite book and still others with a morning run! Some people don’t have any. There is clearly no one right routine but there probably are ways of better preparing for whatever a particular day has in store for us.

And that is the key message: there probably are ways of better preparing for whatever a particular day has in store for us.

The first step is becoming intimately familiar with your current routine. So much of what we do is out of conscious awareness that we hardly notice. The more we understand each step in our morning routine and how they either energise or frustrate us, the better equipped we are to rearrange or remove these steps depending on our day.

I have had clients who realised that their home environment, full of noise and distractions, was not beneficial to them in the morning. It was not setting them up for their days.

They thus decided to get up before everyone else and retire to their home office where they could prepare for their day in calm. This allowed them to get some high impact work done such that by the time they got into the office they had already accomplished much.

My morning routine certainly adapts depending on what I have scheduled but the basic building blocks of meditation, written reflection, exercise and a very late breakfast are usually in the mix. Email and messaging typically come later. The underlying purpose is to approach the day on my terms before being buffeted by the fates.

So, the invitation is to keep this question with you:

“What morning routine might best prepare me for the day ahead?”

Questions in the Image:

  • What is my usual morning routine?
  • What does today likely hold in store for me?
  • What morning routine might best prepare me for the day ahead?

Want to Read More Around This Topic?

Atomic Habits: An Easy and Proven Way to Build Good Habits and Break Bad Ones by James Clear (link to The author provides a mix of scientific research, personal anecdotes and practical advice to help readers understand the power of habits and how to harness that power effectively.

Nurturing Curiosity – Daily Practice: This is part of the Nurturing Curiosity series of tools, insights and questions designed to help nurture curiosity as part of our daily practice. In point of fact, every interaction we have is an opportunity to question what we are observing and how we and others are seeing the world. Also remember that questions come in many forms throughout our day. Waiting is asking questions of me this morning. I am waiting for a tradesman to come. He will come when he comes, and it truly makes no difference to me as I can work from home today. And yet, the mere act of knowing that I will be interrupted at some point is distracting me. Or, in other words, some part of my system is interrupting me in anticipation of being interrupted. You have to love human psychology.

What Thoughts Would You Like to Share? My name is Tom O’Leary, and I envision a world in which curiosity shapes leadership. In this world, leaders aren’t boxed in by traditional thinking or established playbooks. They are open to fresh ideas and diverse perspectives, fostering a culture of exploration and learning. My mission is to shift leadership focus from authority, over-measurement and control to curiosity, learning and innovation, empowering leaders to prioritise the essential. My journey, lived in a number of countries and through various languages, has always been driven by a profound sense of curiosity. In fact, life has taught me that possibility lies not so much in seeking answers but in learning to ask better questions – the ones that help prioritise what is truly essential. I welcome your thoughts, feedback, or personal experiences related to these questions or any insights they may have sparked.