VALLEY Tries It: Robin Sharma’s 20/20/20 Method of The 5 a.m. Club

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Robin Sharma’s bestseller “The 5AM Club: Own Your Morning. Elevate Your Life” follows the fictional plotline of two people found at their lowest by a life-changing, philosophizing billionaire who convinces them to take a leap of faith and follow him around the world, to teach them how shifting their morning routine has the ability to shift the course of their lives. Although the plotline does seem a bit cheesy, this format of self-help books diverts from the commonplace of authors suggesting that our tech obsessions are leaving up doomed and that we need to completely remove ourselves from modern-day technology.

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Much of the novel is conversational, meaning you’re learning with the characters as you learn for yourself. Sharma includes step-by-step formatting of how your morning routine, beginning at 4:45 a.m., would ideally look in order to reclaim your power. This week’s “VALLEY Tries It” joined the 5 a.m. club and implemented each of the directions every morning to put Sharma’s iron morning routine to the test.

The 5 a.m. Club Morning Routine

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The 20/20/20 Method

This method was crafted to ensure your mind and physical body are in tune with one another to set yourself up for a killer day. It essentially suggests that the first hour of rising should be split up into 20-minute blocks. As the alarm went off at 4:45, the last thing we wanted to do was get out of bed and perform some kind of rigorous exercise. The 5:00 a.m. – 5:20 a.m. block is reserved for 20 minutes of exercise, where the goal is to sweat. Sharma says that rigorous exercise upon waking is great for balancing your cortisol levels, that being your stress hormone, to keep them within healthy levels throughout the day.

5:20 a.m. – 5:40 a.m. would consist of some brain work, whether that is meditation, prayer, journaling or gratitude practice, this point of the morning should be taken for you and you only. Your body has already woken up, now it is time to wake up your conscious mind.

Following the period of self-reflection, 5:40 a.m. – 6:00 a.m. is the time to learn. This 20-minute block should be filled with reading, listening to educational podcasts or audiobooks or watching inspirational videos. All of these tasks should be completed without the use of technology (VALLEY tip: getting a classic alarm clock and leaving your phone far away from your bed makes going on it less tempting, and this hour is a great time to leave your phone on the charger, instead of charging it overnight).

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If you are not an early bird, this is probably one of the best books that will actually encourage you to take advantage of the time that the morning offers. Not only does this give you true space and silence to yourself, but spending time in your own presence has tons of opportunities for growth, clarity and creativity.

As students, we all understand the pressure that school places upon us— sometimes it truly feels that there is not enough time in the day. For the few weeks that we were implementing this routine into our day, we found ourselves completing assignments well before due dates, having a much stronger focus and attentiveness in class and leaving your phone out of sight for much more of the day.

The novel is an easy read and offers tons of alternative perspectives to how we view time each day. It reveals the mastery behind topics of leadership, creation and human interaction and truly helps you get to know yourself. It is filled with many time-template formatting charts and graphics that go beyond the first hour of rising, which all offer new methodologies of conquering the day ahead.

Finding time between academics, extracurriculars and social excursions can sometimes feel a bit suffocating, so even implementing these blocks 3-5 times a week will yield life-changing and nearly addicting results. VALLEY absolutely recommends the teachings of The 5 a.m. Club.


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