Take Control In 2020

2019 might have been the best year of my life.

If I’m going to have any hope that 2020 will be as good, I’m going to need to take control of my life and focus my energy and attention on what I truly value.

In my book, Lead The Future: Strategies and Systems for Emerging Leaders, I dedicate an entire chapter to the topic of habits. Personally, I am much happier and sane when I am successful in creating healthy routines for myself: exercising, journaling, meditation, not-eating-an-almond-croissant-every-time-I-order-a-coffee, etc. I don’t create these habits because “that’s what you’re supposed to do.” I create them because they make me feel good.

Last night, I set myself up for success. I put my phone in monochrome. I stopped using my phone at 8pm. I put clean gym clothes in my backpack. I filled my water bottle. I read for an hour before bed to tire my mind out. And I set my alarm for 5:30 am.

I made it to the gym at 6:40 am this morning. I didn’t even put up a fight when my alarm went off.

I’ve done this before but I’m not at all a ‘morning person’. In fact, I hadn’t been to the gym for the last month. It was closed for the last two weeks but before that I had been staying up past midnight binge-watching Hot Ones, going out drinking with my friends too often, and snoozing my alarm when it went off in the morning.

I’m not special. I’ve made all the excuses before. I might even make them again tomorrow.

But can we agree that they’re lies? A subtle self-deception telling yourself that there’s a good reason to not follow through on your routine.

What’s not a lie is this: if you wake up early to get after your new year’s resolution, whether that’s exercising, writing more, or practicing your Spanish, you will feel powerful. 

When it’s 8 am and you’ve already been awake and working towards your goals for two and a half hours, you will feel like a version of yourself that can realize your dreams. When people ask you how you’re doing, you’ll respond, “Living the dream.” When a little thing doesn’t work out for you, you’ll brush it off because you know you’re on your path.

I’m not special. I’m not even an above average athlete.

This was my routine this morning (I weigh 185 lbs):
Squats 5×5 145lbs
Deadlift 1×5 200 lbs
Overhead press 5×5 80 lbs
Pull ups 8-7-5
15 minutes of HIIT on the stationary bike

Start wherever you are right now. Set your daily goal at something that’s achievable and just focus on building the habit. If you can develop the routine, you’ll see that your gains will compound over time.

We don’t get to decide that 2020 will be as good or better than 2019. We only get to decide how we’re going to respond to our circumstances. I hope you’ll join me by taking control of what’s within your power.

Where are you going to start to take control? Let me know by commenting below or sending me an email at grantdever at gmail dot com.

Thank you for reading! If you want to support me on my current adventure, please consider purchasing a copy of Lead The Future, leaving a review on Amazon, joining my newsletter, or helping me to secure speaking opportunities in-person or on media platforms.

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