As entrepreneurs, I would bet we all have a to-do list that’s at least the length of your arm and it never seems to get any shorter. The minute you tick something off that list, you’re adding three things onto it. It’s the price you pay for the freedom of owning your own business and it can be tough. That’s why a morning routine is so important.

Here are five things successful entrepreneurs do every morning to make sure their day gets started correctly.

Skip the Snooze Button

According to an article on Square Up, that snooze button will destroy your day before you even start. Oversleeping will lead to rushing around later in the morning and that’s not a great way to start the day. Many studies agree that how your day starts out sets the tone for the rest of your day. Start it right by getting up on time.

Hit That Home Run First

As Neil Patel wrote in an article for, “Many other entrepreneurs have realized the enormous potential of the early morning hours for getting major traction on the biggest, hairiest tasks.” Why? Because people aren’t calling or texting you at 6 a.m. and you’re the most refreshed first thing in the morning.

If you wait until the end of the day or even the middle of the night you’re going to feel drained from all the other tasks that you’ve had to deal with during the day and those phone calls you’ve had to make.

Plus, by tackling that big project first, you’re feeling like you can take on the world for the rest of the day. Never underestimate the extra added boost you can get from checking a looming monster of a task off your to-do list first thing in the morning.

Get Up Early and Exercise or Meditate

Like it or not, almost every single article I’ve read about successful entrepreneurs says they get up early and exercise or meditate first thing. When you’re looking for a secret formula, this might be the most important ingredient.

Time management expert and author Laura Vanderkam told that, “…a pre-breakfast workout helps reduce stress later in the day, counteracts the effects of a high-fat diet, and improves sleep.” Plus, when you do it in the morning you can’t say that you don’t have time for it later in the day.

Don’t Look at Your Email First Thing

I know that this one sounds counterintuitive, but the truth is that reading your email first thing in the morning gets you so tied up in the little things, you forget to take care of the priorities. Start your morning off with your routine. Do your exercise or meditation, take a shower and eat breakfast. You get to decide what’s most important in the morning, not your email.

Make Your Morning a Habit

Which leads me to my final key, “Practice. Practice. Practice.”. The best way to get the most out of each and every day is habit. Wake up at the same time. Set a routine that includes all your basics like shower, exercise or morning cup of coffee. Do this every morning, whether you plan to sit down for work or spend a day with the family. The key is to train your body to understand this is the morning routine.

The same goes for your bedtime routine. Start it around the same time every night. Make sure that it is a routine so that your body notices the signals that it’s almost bedtime. Your body starts producing melatonin and all those chemicals that prepare it for sleep. That way when your head hits the pillow, you’re going to get the best sleep possible and awake energized to start a new day.

Written by Erika Towne