Your Morning Ritual

I love mornings.

It wasn’t always this way: some days I’d hit the snooze button over and over, and when I got up I felt like I hated everything until lunchtime. But a few years ago I added something that makes me want to get out of bed and greet the day. A Ritual.

My ritual began when I was working at a small startup in San Bruno, a 20-minute BART ride from my apartment. Every morning before hopping on the train I walked to my neighborhood coffee shop, ordered an Americano, and watched the other customers smile and talk.

Sometimes I brought a book and read a chapter. Sometimes I did a Times crossword puzzle. Usually I reviewed my Anki deck. And pretty much every morning I pulled out the old iPhone and played a game for 5 or 10 minutes. I felt a rush when I played a good round in Scramble With Friends, or broke though my personal record in Dots, or unlocked a new stage in Super Hexagon: it was the satisfaction of seeing legitimate effort lead to tangible results. Sometimes I thought I felt my neurons rewiring themselves.

It primed the pump: once my mental energies were flowing I felt ready to tackle anything.

My morning ritual has changed a little bit over the years as I’ve tried on some new things and phased out others. But one thing has stayed constant: I am careful to carve out a quiet, unrushed time full of things that I enjoy. And ultimately it inspired me to create the game that is now Double Dynamo.

What’s Your Ritual?

What do you do to get going in the morning? Maybe it’s as simple as singing in the shower, or hitting the pavement for a short run. Maybe you listen to your favorite music. Maybe you work on cooking the perfect scrambled eggs. Maybe you meditate or recite mantras or reaffirm your goals.

Whatever you do, have fun with it! What will be your inspiration?


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3 thoughts on “Your Morning Ritual

  1. My ritual used to be: wake up at the last possible minute, get ready and go to work. I could get up at 8:20 to leave by 8:40. Not rushing, just efficient.

    Now, because I arrive at work by 9:30 – 10 am, I have a lot more time to enjoy my morning. I also choose to wake when my husband wakes up, at 7:30. That means my morning ritual consists of showering, getting cereal in bed, and reading on my iPhone for about an hour, then going to work. It’s a nice routine.

    1. It’s amazing to me that you only need 20 minutes from getting out of bed to walking out the door. Even when I rush it’s hard to break 45 minutes, but I guess that just means I’m inefficient. :) I’m a big fan of taking my time in the morning, so your current routine sounds pretty great!

  2. I love the idea of reading a chapter from a great book in the morning! I’m going to use that tomorrow morning.

    For most of my adult life I had no trouble getting up before the sun was up. I believed that I had a very important job and that many people depended on me. The feelings of duty and responsibility that gave me the much needed push every morning. Although, my alarm clock still turned into my most hated enemy.

    When I began my first novel getting up suddenly became much more enjoyable. I would get up each morning excited to continue the story. I did not worry about revision yet, so it was all fun and play. That joy of rising to write changed to torment with the second draft revision.

    These days I like Yoga breathing and meditation for a morning ritual, the Art of Living Sudarshan Kriya. I also plan to add DoubleDynamo to my morning routine when the game is released… :-)

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