It’s very powerful to start your mornings with a positive habit – so this positivity aims you at your most successful day. Plus, it’s key to end your day reflecting upon the happy moments and wise lessons learned – so you grow who you are. With this in mind, here’s a powerful morning and evening habit – which happy and successful people use – and which you can start doing right away.
Recently I began asking my son (Ari Salmansohn ) a wonderful question every time I picked him up from daycare:
It immediately re-directs my son to think about all the good stuff he learned – and thereby engrave the insights and education further into his memory.
Plus what my son shares also helps us to feel connected to his growth, makes us laugh – and very often, my son winds up teaching us something.
Howard and I the other night learned that the word watermelon in Chinese is “Xigua.”
“You didn’t know that?” my son asked surprised – when we thanked him for sharing his new vocab word.
“No, we didn’t. You were our teacher right now,” we told him.
This made him smile.
“Yes, we can all be teachers to one another,” I said. “You have a lot to teach us. We can learn from you – and we do – a lot. Each of us has something different we can teach and learn from one another. And it’s good to always be learning something new each day.”
“Sooooo…what did YOU learn today?” he asked us.
Howard and I laughed. Geez! What did we learn?
We took some thoughtful time to contemplate the answer.
“I know!” I announced. “We learned that the word watermelon is ‘Xigua’ in Chinese.”(Yep, I was trying to take the easy-answer out.)
My son laughed. “Noooooo- what did YOU learn?”
Ari was not accepting my admittedly lazy response.
Howard and I each agreed that this was a great question for us grown ups to think about at the end of each day – not just kids.
And this is a terrific question for us to all share and talk about as a family – to encourage us to learn and connect with one another.
I also love thinking about this “What did you learn today?” question at the beginning of the day – to keep it as a wonderful lens to view one’s day through.
When you wake up tomorrow morning, ask yourself this question:
As the day progresses, keep thinking to yourself:
Before bedtime, check in with yourself and ask: ”What did I learn today?”
Darren Hardy, the author of The Compound Effect , believes that a person’s morning and evening habits are what he calls “bookends” of a successful life.
Hardy offers an interesting bead analogy to explain why.
“Imagine a string with a series of beads on it.
The beads represent your goals, relationships, and priorities.
Tip the string this way or that way, and the beads easily slide off and onto the floor.
But tie a knot on each end of the string, and the beads stay put.
Those knots are your morning and evening routines.
They keep the priorities of your life from falling apart and thus help you progress and become a better man.”
Basically, it helps to ask these questions as your go-to morning and evening rituals, so you can keep your priorities nicely attuned and highly focused – plus mindfully aim yourself in the direction you want your life to go.
I started to ask these questions regularly with Howard and my friend Lisa. We each agreed that this ritual helped us to focus on the happy in our lives – plus learn things from each other which helped each of our careers.
After experiencing the many perks of asking these particular questions, I wound up creating 9 more thought-provoking questions – each of which lovingly trains the ol’ brain to focus on what’s happy – plus offers lots of potential for growth and wisdom.
I’m excited to share these questions with you – so you can use them as your daily morning and evening habit too!
1. What did you learn today?
2. What made you laugh today?
3. What surprised you today?
4. What made you proud today?
5. What loving action did you do for someone today?
6. What loving action did someone do for you?
7. What do you feel especially grateful about today?
8. What did you do today to move a little closer to a goal/dream?
9. How did you stretch yourself further today?
10. What made you feel excited/inspired today?
Each time you do, you will boost a combination of happiness, knowledge, wisdom, and connectedness!
Need extra support to think happier?
I’d love to hear your insights on the comment section below! What’s something which comes to your mind and heart when you read my essay?
Hi I’m Karen Salmansohn, founder of NotSalmon. My mission is to offer you easy-to-understand insights and tools to empower you to bloom into your happiest, highest potential self. I use playful analogies, feisty humor, and stylish graphics to distill big ideas – going as far back as ancient wisdom from Aristotle, Buddhism and Darwin to the latest research studies from Cognitive Therapy, Neuro Linquistic Programming, Neuroscience, Positive Psychology, Quantum Physics, Nutritional Studies – and then some.