How do you commence your mornings? Is it a flurry of showers, clothing changes, and lunchboxes as you ready yourself and the kids for the day, or maybe beginning with something tranquil – meditation, yoga, and tea? Or perhaps crushing through your daily to-dos from the start – responding to emails while brushing your teeth!
To discover the secrets of success, we sought out six successful ladies—from 29 to 75 years old. While there is no “best” approach, a few similarities emerged: make sure you don’t skip breakfast and always find time for something that brings joy!
[Related: What 16 Successful People Do During Their Morning Routine]
Check out the six routines below!
1. Shama Hyder, CEO and Founder of the Marketing Zen Group
From the age of nine, Shama Hyder lived in Dallas and has been entranced with technology ever since. As her family moved from India to America and found a home there, she quickly fell in love with all the possibilities digital marketing offered. Nowadays you can find her leading initiatives as an industry maven!
At the age of 23, she launched the Marketing Zen Group – a well-known web marketing and digital PR firm. Since its establishment in 2009, this company has seen incredible success with an average growth rate of 400%, year after year!
Hyder’s sharp business acumen has propelled the organization to remarkable success. She was named the “Zen Master of Marketing” by Entrepreneur Magazine, “Millennial Master of the Universe” by Fast Company, and one of Forbes’ and Inc.’s “30 Under 30.” She received tremendous recognition both at the White House and the United Nations for achieving one of America’s top 100 companies managed by a young entrepreneur. On top of that, her book The Zen of Social Media Marketing topped the bestseller lists!
Even with her constantly changing whereabouts, Hyder makes the most of every moment by taking control and following a manageable morning routine that helps maximize productivity. “I am constantly on the go—meeting clients, traveling internationally for speaking or media engagements—so every day looks a little different,” she says. “I live out of a suitcase.” When the young world traveler is in Dallas, this is what her morning looks like.
[Related: 22 Morning Routines That Will Inspire You To Get Out of Bed]
- 7:30: Rise and shine, scan your inbox for any pressing matters that require prompt attention, then reply to them at once.
- 8:00 Embrace the day and get dressed! I, for one, am not a fan of mornings so to make my life more effortless, I take showers at night.
- 8:30: I never miss breakfast — scrambled eggs, toast, and tea is my go-to’s. This is crucial; otherwise, I may forget to eat lunch due to back-to-back meetings or days spent in the studio.
- 8:45: Drive my A7 to work.
- 9:00: During my gathering with the team, we discussed our current plans and worked together to devise new strategies. The digital ecosystem moves so fast that our first question is always, “What changed while we were sleeping, and how can we best utilize it for our clients?”
- 9:30: Have a cup of tea and create my list of priorities for the day.
2. Kayla Green, Digital Strategy Director for Saatchi LA
Kayla Green is the epitome of success; she has held a plethora of prestigious roles in media and excels on the track, establishing her as an unstoppable force. After graduating from Hunter College with her degree in media studies, she quickly scored a job at Ogilvy & Mather where she spearheaded the digital program.
At the young age of 30, this New York City local has already earned far more career recognition than most experience in a lifetime. From receiving Mobile Marketer’s “25 Women to Watch” award and two Smarties awards to an Effie under her belt, she is nothing short of amazing!
Two and a half years ago, Green joined Saatchi LA where she works to produce marketing and technological solutions for renowned brands such as Toyota. As of now, she resides near the beach with her husband, Dot Com (a miniature Goldendoodle), as well as an upcoming baby boy due in April!
With a genuine passion for her work, Green doesn’t believe in attempting to achieve a “work-life balance”. Rather, she yearns for the union of these two realms through what she calls “work-life blending”. This is evident from her morning multitasking which involves incorporating professional components within her personal life.
Furthermore, she does not keep a consistent schedule. “Every morning is different from the one before it, and that flexibility helps me be mindful that plans change,” Green explains. “In my business, where things can shift dramatically at a moment’s notice, it’s key to be open and adaptable.” Here, she shares a sample day.
- 5:30: Rise and shine to either go for an energizing stroll (if I weren’t nine months pregnant, I’d be sprinting!) or practice yoga outdoors.
- 6:30: Refresh yourself with freshly squeezed juice from the juice bar!
- 7:00: Strolling with my pup and admiring the dawn’s early light, I can also take a look at emails on my phone, listen to a tech podcast for leisure, or engage in an appropriate work-related call.
- 7:30: Refresh yourself with a shower, then dress to impress!
- 8:00: Every morning, I make sure to take some time and share a meal with my husband. This usually consists of bacon and eggs since I refrain from eating gluten or dairy products. Breakfast is something that’s never missed! My spouse and I share the same career field, so we continuously discuss our jobs along with intriguing web links and relevant articles. As part of my job duties, I must stay abreast of digital trends; thusly, conversing this way helps us both remain informed.
- 8:45: Take the scenic route to work and listen to NPR, from captivating news pieces or an enthralling podcast like This American Life.
- 9:30: Start your day at work by taking Dot Com on a stroll around the building (Saatchi is pet-friendly), and then talk to colleagues in person about any pressing tasks.
- 10:00: Have a cup of coffee.
3. Leesa Evans, Costume Designer, and Celebrity Stylist
Following in her mother’s footsteps, Leesa Evans was destined for a career within the fashion industry. Not only did her mom serve as her mentor, but she was also an established fashion designer and store owner. During this time of inspiration and aspiration, Leesa attended Parsons The New School for Design where she experienced firsthand what it meant to work with a costume designer – something that immediately captivated and held her interest.
Having already worked on 25 feature films, including Bridesmaids for which she was nominated for a Costume Designer Guild Award, 46-year-old Deborah Evans is no stranger to the industry. Her latest venture with Judd Apatow and Amy Schumer’s Trainwreck comes out in July; and as if that wasn’t enough to keep her busy, she also has a career as a personal stylist for stars such as Claire Danes and Maya Rudolph.
With a fast-paced lifestyle, whether on set or supporting private customers in L.A., Evans deliberately makes time for serenity each morning. “Since I usually work a minimum of 12 to 14 hours a day, to keep my stamina up, it’s important that I start with the greatest amount of calmness possible,” she says. “That way, I’m heading into the rest of my day with a relaxed and mindful tone.”
Setting off the day right, she starts her morning routine in Los Angeles with her husband and their Chihuahua, Matilda.
- 7:00: Before I even rise from my mattress, I commit to taking time for myself and practicing mindfulness through meditation.
- 7:30: Immersing in a warm bath helps to keep me centered and relaxed, even though it can take extra time compared to showering.
- 7:45: Put on my costume. As a professional costume designer, I am expected to always look my best and put on an outfit that reflects who I am as a creative individual. After much trial and error, I have perfected my “work uniform” to make getting ready a breeze. In the summer months, you can usually find me wearing a dress with sandals – whereas in wintertime it is often a silk blouse paired with jeans and boots. My color palette typically includes camel, beige, black navy gray, or chocolate brown; this allows me to flawlessly coordinate my look! At 8:00 a.m., I savor the rich coffee that my husband lovingly prepares for me and then enjoy a green smoothie as we converse about our day ahead. Additionally, I open up my email account right away (but turn off my phone in the evening until after taking a bath).
- 8:30: Drive to work.
- 9: I have a morning assembly with my helpers to devise an approach and plan of action for the day ahead.
- At 9:15 am, my team and I come together to create a productive plan for the day. Whether we’re visiting fabric stores, attending private appointments with clients, gathering inspiration for our next meeting, or heading off to the shops as soon as they open at 10 – it’s time to take action.
4. Reem Rahim, Chief Brand Officer and Co-Founder of Numi Organic Teas
Reem Rahim’s amazing journey to becoming America’s tea queen began at age four when she and her family made the momentous move from Baghdad to Ohio in 1966. Her father had acquired a residency at Cleveland Clinic, launching Reem on a lifetime of adventures. After obtaining a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering from Case Western University, she further explored the world of art by studying at the Museum School in Boston and Lorenzo di Medici Institute in Florence before earning an MFA from John F. Kennedy University.
In 1999, Rahim’s visit to the Grand Canyon revolutionized her life; she was already in pursuit of an art degree and working as a substitute teacher. During their time at the canyon, Rahim and her brother discussed reviving an old Iraqi tradition – enjoying dry lime tea together like they used to do when they were younger. Despite Rahim’s trepidation about this venture, Numi Organic Teas was founded by them that year!
From the very beginning, Numi has gained tremendous praise from multiple outlets. For example, Inc Magazine named it one of their fastest-growing companies; Greatist.com listed it as one of America’s healthiest workplaces and the Specialty Food Association honored them with a Leadership Award for Citizenship – just to name some accolades! Rahim was even invited to attend the prestigious White House Forum on Business Innovation.
For the past two years, she has lived and worked on a two-acre farm in Petaluma, California, with her husband, six-year-old stepson, new puppy, two goats, six chickens, six ducks, and a rabbit. Despite being one of the country’s leading foodie entrepreneurs, her mornings are decidedly low-key. She usually wakes up at 6 am to take care of the animals before starting work at 8 am.
- 6:30: Every morning I am roused from my slumber by either our canine companion’s whining to go outdoors or by the snuggling embrace of my stepson wishing me good morning. We chat about how we slept and the dreams that fill our night – occasionally he even brings a book for us to read together.
- 7:00 Get him ready—breakfast, dress, prepare his snack, and help him with homework.
- 7:30: While my husband escorts our son to school, I take care of the puppy, tending to its needs while cooking up a scrumptious morning meal. Accompanied by freshly brewed coffee (not tea!), this delectable breakfast is composed of farm-fresh eggs that are sure to tantalize your taste buds!
- 8:00 Eat breakfast with my husband, a freelance graphic designer who works on some projects for Numi. We chat about what we need to do that day—deliverables, timelines, and ideas. He assists me in creating illustrations of items I’m working on, and I lend him a helping hand with administrative tasks.
- 9:00 When I sit down at my desk, the first thing I do is take out my trusty journal and jot down tasks for the day. This way, I don’t feel overwhelmed when attempting to complete them all since it’s easy to keep track of what needs doing by scratching off items as they are finished. After that, I check my email before turning back to whatever project was listed at top of my list!
- 10: Make my first cup of tea.
5. Vicki Hoefle, Author, Professional Speaker, and Parenting Expert
At 57, Vicki Hoefle is a mother of five and an unstoppable force in her career. It did take some time to get there though; born in Southern California, she moved to Seattle at age 10 and after high school spent a decade exploring the world, trying to find out where her passions lay before eventually settling into a corporate job back home. Shortly thereafter, she got married had baby number one, and became a stay-at-home mom – but that didn’t stop her from reaching even greater heights!
Desperate for a supplemental income, Hoefle began caring for several other children in addition to her own. Her sensible parenting philosophy – encouraging kids from infancy on to be contributing members of the family and providing them with positive affirmation – resonated deeply with many people. As a result, it wasn’t long before her daycare expanded into an entire center staffed by professionals and filled with dozens of infants through second graders!
In 1995, Hoefle and her family decided to escape the hectic city swirl and moved to an organic farm in rural Vermont. There, she got remarried to a man with two kids of his own. Together, they had five children within five years of age, which didn’t slow her down a bit. In between parenting classes, private parenting coaching sessions, and speaking gigs, Hoefle wrote four books and launched her award-winning Parenting on Track program.
So what accounts for Hoefle’s astonishingly tranquil attitude? Her mornings are designed around her rhythms. “I go according to my emotions rather than letting a strict timetable dictate how I perform each day,” she explains. This has allowed her to not only obtain plenty of work done in no time but also be inspired creatively while doing so! As a result, even the busiest days feel peaceful thanks to this laid-back approach.
- 6:00 In the morning, I kickstart my day by writing in my journal or reading something enlightening from Deepak Chopra. After that, I set an intention for the day and then meditate. Even when all of my children were living at home with me, this routine was essential to starting each morning off right!
- 7:00 Have a cup of tea and a light breakfast or juice.
- 7:30: To get through the day positively and productively, I like to tune into my favorite Pandora radio station which truly speaks to my mood.
- 9:30: Call my business partner and run through the schedule for the rest of the day—appointments, classes, interviews, and projects due.
6. Vermén Verallo-Rowell, MD, Dermatologist, and Founder of VMV Hypoallergenics
Whereas some may list mountain biking or travel as their passions, Dr. Verallo-Rowell from the Philippines prefers something more unusual: skin allergies, investigating how sun exposure and other elements like indoor lights and lasers can affect the appearance of eczema, psoriasis, acne, and rosacea. She finds real joy in studying this fascinating subject matter! As a graduate of the University of the Philippines medical school, with training from Cleveland Clinic and Wayne State University in Detroit, she has an unquenchable enthusiasm for the skin.
Dr. Verallo-Rowell has earned her well-deserved reputation with over 150 articles published in medical journals, two books authored by herself, and prestigious awards from the International League of Dermatological Societies, American Dermatological Association, and the Philippine Dermatological Society. In the 1970s, she engineered a product at her private clinic to help her husband’s acne issue that had been plaguing him for years. And after only weeks of usage, his skin was looking clear and radiant again! His enthusiasm spurred her on to the market this creation – with his assistance as an expert in corporate business operations – which led to the formation of VMV Hypoallergenics in 1979.
At the grand age of 75, Dr. Verallo-Rowell is still actively practicing and researching. She resides with her daughter and son-in-law on a beach in Kennebunkport, Maine alongside their two grandchildren (a five-year-old boy and a nine-year-old girl) who lovingly refer to her as Lola – a term of endearment for grandmothers in Filipino culture. “Habit plus focus remain my keys to success,” Dr. Verrallo-Rowell affirms; something that can be seen through her meticulously organized morning routine!
Dr. Verallo-Rowell’s Morning
- 5:00: Awaken with the dawn, and give thanks for a new day ahead. Take a moment to express gratitude for all that you have been blessed with the night before.
- 5:30: With the gym only a few minutes away, I head there frequently to get my cardio and strength training in.
- 7:00: Eat breakfast with my grandchildren—either yogurt and fruit or two very thin slices of wheat bread packed on the inside with seeds, nuts, and unsalted organic peanut butter.
- 7:30: Putter around. I read the news or a journal and prepare for my day. I might finish a presentation or make a work call, or talk with friends.
- 9:30: Leave for work.
- 10:00: Arrive at the hospital or clinic.
This was originally posted on DailyWorth.