Creating Your Personal Morning Benchmarks
January 19, 2016
One of the hallmarks of a successful radio station is having a great morning show. And as we've learned in PPM, one the hallmarks of being a successful morning show lies in the creation of morning benchmarks.
The logic is simple. Listeners place a high value on how they start their day and want compelling content to make them smile in the morning. We want to increase listening occasions, so we create said content and serve it up to them at peak listening times. War of the Roses, Phone Tap, Second Date Update, Dirty on the :30...they are all tried and true features that have become staples of morning radio.
But what about your personal morning benchmarks? How much value do you place on how you start your day?
"How you start your day is how you live your day. How you live your day is how you live your life" -- Louise Hay
I took this quote to heart last October and created a new morning ritual for myself that truly has made a difference in my focus, my attitude, and my success. Radio people know the importance of "getting the quarter hour," and I would suggest it can help you in your personal life too.
Welcome to 15-15-15... Your Personal Benchmarks!
First, set your alarm early enough to give you 45 minutes of alone time. Don't hit the snooze button! Get to bed early enough the night before so that you can get a minimum of 7 hours of sleep each night. Getting proper rest is vital to both your physical and emotional health (Sign up at creativesoulcoaching.net and I will send you a free article where I do a deep dive about this topic)
The plan is to start your day with 15 minutes of meditation, 15 minutes of reading/self-development, and 15 minutes of light exercise.
Meditation - Those who have never done it think it's some weird, new age, trance. It's not. At its simplest level, it's a tool to train your mind. There are many different forms of meditation that are used for different purposes, but what is important is that you get still and focus on your breathing.
Try this approach:
Sit cross-legged on your couch or on the floor.
Breathe in deeply for a 5 count.
Hold for 5 seconds.
Exhale on a 5 count.
Hold for 5 seconds.
Repeat 3 times.
Once you are connected with the breath, just sit in stillness. It won't be easy and your mind will wander, and that's totally fine. When you notice it happening, go back to focusing on your breathing. At the end of the 15 minutes, simply set an intention for your day. It might be to not react to work related stress, it might be to treat the people around you with more love, it might be about opening yourself up to finding creative solutions for the challenges you encounter. Whatever feels right to you!
Reading/Self-Development - Pick a book that will help you solve personal or professional problems. If you aren't a reader, you could also commit to watching a Ted talk on Youtube, writing, or something else that will heighten your self-development. If you are reading this column every week, there is part of you that wants to learn and become better. So set aside 15 minutes in the morning to help you on that path.
Light Exercise- It could be yoga, it could be taking a brisk walk around the block, it could be doing some pushups and crunches in the living room. Light aerobic activity brings more oxygen to your brain and has been proven to improve your mood for up to 12 hours.
If you can't find 45 minutes in the morning, then adjust and make it your own. Maybe you do 10-10-10. Maybe you do 15-15 ,meditating and then listening to a motivational podcast while you exercise. What is important is that you show up and commit to being your best each day!
Just as it takes listeners some time to figure out what your morning show's benchmarks are and to make them a part of their morning habit, it's going to take you a bit to make 15-15-15 your habit. But just as a great morning show benchmark will change ratings, the payoff for a positive, intentional, start to your day will change your life.
If you need book or more specific meditation guidance, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
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