I came across ‘The 5 AM club‘ by Robin Sharma via an Instagram post. It was during the same time I was building a routine to practice waking up at 5:30 AM. I decided to give in to my intuition and began reading the book. I discovered a newfound zeal for the ideas and stories that seemed unfamiliar.
I began to understand the enlarging benefits of waking up early in the morning and what followed on afterwards within the Victory hour.
The book enterprises various techniques and methods that are told uniquely through the journey of two individuals known to the readers as the ‘artist’ and ‘entrepreneur’. The structure of this book acts as a guide for the two individuals, but more importantly for the readers who are following their journey.
I intend to summarize the teachings of this book, in the hope that it is available for those who are overwhelmed by their schedule.
- This summarization is biased.
- Please assume all other substantive ideas are from the book.
If you wish to find out more about Robin Sharma, check out his site.
A limitation is nothing more than a mentality that too many good people practise daily until they believe it’s a reality. We have defaulted to the idea of living with comfort. And why shouldn’t we? It’s easy and convenient. The issue with comfortable living, there isn’t any growth. The place where your greatest discomfort lies is also the spot where your largest opportunity lives. If we nurture ourselves to comfort living and persist to live in the same way, we forget the feeling of discomfort. Upon experiencing troubling events, we end up freezing to the challenge, forgetting to fight the pressures of the experience. The beliefs that disturb you, the feelings that threaten you, the projects that unnerve you and the unfoldments of your talents that the insecure part of you is resisting are precisely where you need to go too. The symptoms of uneasiness with sweaty palms, the feeling of being restlessness coupled with the nerving feeling in the gut are triggers of discomfort. It’s our body ways of indicating that we are experiencing a discovery.
How to achieve peak productivity?
Rule 1: Distraction is the enemy. It prevents you from achieving your creative workflows. Being overstimulated with technology is a hindrance to our production workflow.
Rule 2: Improving in your endeavours by 1%. Incremental progress overtime leads to compounding results.
Rule 3: Practice to learn something new will be hard at first, messy in the middle and simple in the end. Learning is a journey of practice and to experience its mediums is a true experience of becoming competent.
Rule 4: To adopt a culture that isn’t followed by the norm. We should engender a mindset that the 95% won’t consider – waking up at 5:30 AM, having cold showers, meditation is just a few things we could consider.
Rule 5: The moment you start to become complacent or feel inclined to not follow through with your daily habits. At that moment, you should follow through with your habits because you increase your surface area for self-discipline. A performance equation to consider is:
PRESSURE × REFUELLING = GROWTH + ENDURANCE
To begin our day with a winning formula – sets us up for a winning mentality that we can carry throughout the day. By owning our morning, we create a flow state that engenders creativity, enhanced productivity and newfound energy to deal with various obstacles.
- Pocket 1: Sweat – The first segment of 20 minutes requires you to move. To simply state it – stretch, run and do anything that makes you sweat. 🙋♂️How I’ve implemented this rule? This is my third segment of the process, which I’ve dedicate 30 minutes between 7:00-7:30 AM – to stretching or if I’m feeling overly ambitious I’ll end up going for a run.
- Pocket 2: Reflect – This second segment of 20 minutes is designed to help you re-access your natural power through reflection. By journaling, meditation or breathing techniques to heighten your measure for dissolving stress. 🙋♂️How I’ve implemented this rule? This is my second segment – I end up dedicating 10 minutes to practicing the Wim Hof breathing technique. The remaining 10 minutes, I dedicate to writing my morning pages and journaling to highlight my story-worthy moment from the day before.
- Pocket 3: Grow – The third segment of 20 minutes is designed to fortify your growth through the means of investing in reading a book or listening to an audiobook. 🙋♂️How I’ve implemented this rule? This is my first segment of the formula – I usually find myself investing about one hour towards it. As soon as I wake up, I consume a bottle of water and cascade into my reading from 5:30 – 6:30 AM.
10 tactics for lifelong improvement
Tactic 1: The Tight Bubble of Total Focus (TBTF) 📲: To strength, the bubble of your focus, the overstimulation towards digital consumption is a costing factor to your creativity, spirituality, mentality and financially. Imagine the focus bubble as a porous membrane – you control what goes in and out. To implement the tactic, schedule the day that is flooded with honing your creativity, energy and productivity.
Tactic 2: The 90/90/1 Rule 👉🏽: This draws on the idea of the default activity. The 90/90/1 rule is the commitment of 90 days and 90 minutes of your day to a single activity. These 90 minutes are a result of implementing deep work without any interruptions.
Tactic 3: The 60/10 Method 👨🏽💻: The structure of a working cycle is the result of oscillation work – an alternate burst of deep work followed by rest and recovery. The 60 minutes is the result of a productivity sprint that is compensated by 10 minutes of recovery. The practice of recovery is achieved by reading a book, listening to music that distracts you from current thoughts and worries.
Tactic 4: The Daily 5 Concept ❺: Incremental success by 1% are micro-achievements – done consistently overtime compounds the results. By building, a practice of improving by 1% is a habit practised throughout the day creates an aura of confidence. The more you practice, the easier it gets to execute.
Tactic 5: The 2nd Wind Workout (2WW) 🏋🏽♂️: The practice of implementing a second workout in the evening to rejuvenate your willpower batteries. Walking for one-hour promotes creativity, engenders deep thinking which flows value-based ideas. It also limits your digital consumption.
Tactic 6: The 2 Massage Protocol (2MP) 💆🏽♂️: Massage therapy generates significant improvements in brain performance, mood and ability to fight stress. Enjoying the practice of deep tissue massage every week promotes stress reduction, prevents degradation of telomeres and optimizing good health. The benefits of a massage include a 31% reduction of cortisol (the fear hormone) levels; a 31% increase in dopamine (the neurotransmitter of motivation); a 28% elevation of serotonin (the neurochemical responsible for regulating anxiety and raising happiness); reduced muscle tension; improved pain relief via the sending of anti-inflammation messaging to muscle cells; and elevations in the signalling of those cells to make more mitochondria.
Tactic 7: Traffic University 🎓: By leveraging your travel time towards continuous growth – listening to audiobooks or podcast whilst driving to and from work. Enlarging the surface area of knowledge and subsequently compounding through the implementation of that knowledge can be a winning ticket to a great idea.
Tactic 8: The Dream Team technique ☁️: This technique draws upon the notion of pursuing what you feel passionate about and enjoy doing. By practising the use of the Eisenhower matrix to focus on such endeavours within the scope of the day.
Tactic 9: The Weekly Design System (WDS) 📆: the tactic draws upon positioning yourself to create a weekly schedule. By allocating 30-45 minutes of Sunday morning to assemble the blueprint for the upcoming week. Position yourself to record your goals that you wish to achieve and how you could improve in the coming week. Within the schedule, you set out your victory hour, 90/90/1 sessions, 60/10 cycles and the second Wind Workouts.
Tactic 10: The 60 Minute Student 👨🏽🎓: Within the waking hours of your day – dedicate 60 minutes to learning – reading, journaling, learning through an online program or building on a skill through theoretical and practical implementation. In doing so, you’re creating market value for yourself which makes you indispensable in your organisation.
11 Maxim Rules for life
To Create Magic in the World, Own the Magic within Yourself:
French mathematician Blaise Pascal wrote: Release your need for complexity and immerse yourself in the stillness only the early morning can provide so you get to know yourself again.
Collect Miraculous Experiences over Material Things: Be more alive to the wonders that inhabit your days. Never compromise the state of your life over increase income or larger net worth. The more you find value in everything in your life through experiences – you end up creating memories of wonder which adds blissful volume to your life. The real treasure is encapsulated in the shire experiences rather than the materialistic components we shower ourselves.
Failure Inflates Fearlessness: Previously, I used to believe the term failure ponders such negative connotation. One must consider that failures are a form of learning experiences. At times we must even consider ‘What is my favourite kind of failure?‘. To ‘fail as a scientist’ expands on the value that failures are just any other iteration we have experimented with in our process to achieve the desired goal.
Proper use of your primal power creates your personal utopia: Human beings live in a facade of satisfaction. This rule draws upon focusing on four resources that are your thoughts, your feelings, your words and your deeds. To establish a mindset that is persistent in establishing gratitude, ascending mastery in happiness, building a positive influence. To build a speaking habit of encouragement, uplifting attitude that transpire hope, but most importantly people.
Avoid Bad People: Even one enemy is an enemy too many. Pass through life gracefully, taking the high road when conflict shows up. Should someone do you wrong, let karma do the dirty work. Our nature as human beings is to get back at people who have done us wrong and in hindsight – we end up hurting our energy by thinking of ways to get back. By shifting away from such situations, or ignoring what wrong has been done we allow karma to provide that well-needed response.
Money Is the Fruit of Generosity, Not Scarcity: Poverty is the consequence of an inner condition, not an outer situation. There are four practices to consider when developing your financial fortune. Positive expectancy – To develop a mindset that money is available to me in abundance. You welcome refreshing avenues of thought and with the correct opportunity creating additional streams of income. Active faith – is when you behave in a way that shows life you trust it in its abundance and benevolence. Gratitude – in the premise of showing gratitude, as a child whilst I resided in India. My parents instilled a habit of worshipping the God’s in the morning before I left for school. As a form of gratitude exercise, I have lost touch with this habit. I hardly pray now. So, to keep some reminiscences of the old ways, I use an A5 pocket notebook to write a few sentences of gratitude. Value delivery – To over-deliver to the commitments you make in life. I have come to find that its difficult to build that level of commitment when engrossed in multiple projects and interests because you end up over-committing without realising the unintended consequences of first-order thinking.
Optimal Health Maximizes Your Power to Produce Magic: Exercising first thing in the morning initiates an early win of taking care of your health. This leaves your cognition, energy, physiology and spirit primed to create wonders within your day. Optimising health should also include a second workout that acts as a recharging boost. A means to get away from technology with a late-night walk.
Continue Raising Your Life Standards Toward Absolute World-Class: Realising the hedonic adaptations of life and not taking them seriously like getting a promotion. The excitement lasts for a couple of days until it evaporates and then it just becomes another role or buying a luxury car – the feeling evaporates and it becomes another car you own. How does one raise living standards? Investing in the finest books you can buy, and you’ll be rewarded in multiples. Eat fantastic food of the highest calibre, even if all you can currently afford is an excellent starter salad at a luxurious local restaurant. Visit art galleries… so the creativity and consciousness of the painters will rub off on your soul.
Deep Love Yields Unconquerable: This rule is something I don’t practice enough – probably based on the fact that it hasn’t been exercised on me. It seems like an intergenerational habit that I picked up for not advocating praises and goodwill compliments to people around me. This needs to change. A statement from the book that has left an imprinting mark and somewhat a guiding mantra to follow ‘Part of your job as a fully alive human is to make people feel better about themselves. And to make others smile‘.
Heaven on Earth Is a State, Not a Place: The importance of wonder is a critical aspect of ever-expanding genius.
Tomorrow Is a Bonus, Not a Right: The precedence of time should be valued to a great extent. Tomorrow is a privilege – one should not consider it for granted. Hence, the moment that we have control over should be made the most off. In the uncertainty of life which is often witnessed in the form of illness, injury and death – we should never assume that it will never happen to us.
I would love to get your feedback or thoughts about this summary, so please consider leaving a comment below 🙂
I am a writer and a graduate engineer working in Leicester, UK.