Destroy to Create: My Q2 Morning Routine to Set Up a Powerful Day

Every three months, I follow a process I call Destroy to Create: I select a regular practice, routine, habit -- something at which I’m already proficient and efficient in -- and reengineer it from first principles.

Last quarter, I experimented with waking up at 5 a.m. and spending the first three hours of my day on myself -- reading, writing, exercise. This quarter, I’m leveling things up even further.

After experimenting with a few different variations, here’s what I settled on for the next three months (or more). In a few days, I’ll follow up with a video!

Morning Routine Timeline

5 a.m.: Sense goes off, I open my eyes, and I make a decision on how to spend the next 30 minutes: snuggling with my husband Mike, snoozing or reading Reddit on my phone.

5:30: Out of bed -- 5:30 is a hard stop -- into the bathroom, and then into the kitchen to start my morning routine. (Excuse the detail -- the team asked me to provide it to illustrate just how serious I am about optimization in my daily life.)

  • Put kettle of hot water on
  • Tell Echo to play my favorite Pandora station (right now, it’s Beyonce Radio)

  • Unload the dishwasher (which I will load and run the night before)

  • Set up my Bulletproof coffee station: kitchen towel on the counter, hand mixer, tablespoon, ghee, Brain Octane, mason jar

  • Prepare the French press (right now, 4 tablespoons of Bustelo espresso)

  • Journal (right now, I’m testing the Panda Planner) until the kettle clicks off

  • Meditate (right now, I’m using Headspace and its 10-minute meditations, which gives the water enough time to steep)

  • Pour water into kettle

  • Wake Mike up, typically by snuggling, and ask whether he’s ready for coffee

  • Depending on his answer, grab two mugs or one mug and one insulated tumbler

  • Assemble Bulletproof coffee for two. Right now, it’s:

    • 2 tbsp. ghee

    • 2 tbsp. Brain Octane

    • 2 small pinches of stevia

    • Three shakes of powdered cinnamon

    • One pinch of Bulletproof Vanilla Powder

    • Optional: Two shakes turmeric

  • Prep a bottle of sparkling water with my Sodastream

  • Greet Mike

??: Coffee With Mike: By now, Mike’s up and in the kitchen. Every morning, no matter how early we have to wake up, we always have our coffee together. I’ve previously written about these morning meetings, but these days, they’re a bit more freeform. We run through the day’s schedule (if there are any major changes to tomorrow’s schedule, I’ll also mention them), enjoy our coffee, share viral videos or listen to music, and just relax.

By 7:30: I begin a 45-to-60-minute Pilates workout (in 2015, I bought a Balanced Body reformer-tower combo to save money on unlimited Pilates group classes)

8:15: Complete workout, shower.

8:30: Start work (usually by checking email and Slack to look for progress-blockers from the team).

Q2 Experiment: Morning Routines

After I told Rosemina and Billy about my morning routine for Q2, they decided to join me in reinventing their morning routines. Look for more coverage from each of us as we force ourselves to create new habits.