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Artwork by @koketit

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#MAKEITHAPPEN

Morning Habits for Success

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What's the secret to success? We went straight to the experts: our #MAKEITHAPPEN women. Let's dive right in…

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For starters, we learned that the way you start the morning sets the tone for the rest of the day and that incremental moves can lead to meaning change. Too often we're searching for the one quick trick, but layering on things like a short meditation, optimism cards, or the simple act of being present with family can make a difference. Think of the butterfly effect—but with a knockout positive outcome.

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Here, we've gathered the morning routines from our roster of trailblazing women. Because if anyone knows the link between good A.M. habits and success, it's them. Mix and match, be inspired by what you love and ditch what you don't, to create your own top 3 to-dos. We're all individuals, leading our lives in different paces, so find a formula that feels right for you and your lifestyle. Remember: Small steps will take you where you want to go.

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Top 3 Tips

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Tricia Clarke-Stone & Antoinette Clarke, Authors & Branding Experts
1. We’re both firm believers in routines and starting our day with structure, which helps set our intentions and makes us better equipped to handle whatever chaos comes our way. We set our alarm 35-45 minutes early so we can gather our thoughts and go over our personal to-do list for the day before we get out of bed.
2. Then we meditate.
3. While we get dressed there’s always music playing to create a good vibe and get our energy going. A good playlist is our coffee.

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Jodie Patterson, Author & Activist
1. I gotta sweat. So it's either a 2-mile run, or a 1-hour weights yoga situation, or morning sex. Which one lands, depends on the state of affairs that particular day.
2. Love songs on repeat. I have a playlist that is everything I’ve always wanted to say to the love of my life. And everything I’ve ever wanted to hear. Essentially it's love from me to me.
3. A 30-minute walk with my pup.

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Deepika Chopra, Optimism Doctor
1. Short snuggles [with my son]
2. Hot water with lemon
3. A pull from my Things Are Looking Up deck of 52 cards (52 optimism card prompts and 1 directions card)

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Sara Gore, Host of NBC's New York Live & Open House
1. Before I open my eyes in the morning, I play my day through in my head and think about what I want to accomplish, and start my day with gratitude. Then coffee! I go through my daily schedule in bed while I drink that first cup in total peace and quiet and catch the local news on NBC 4 with Darlene, Michael, Lauren, and Maria!
2. Work out before breakfast. Seratonins to start the day. Couple miles on the treadmill while I catch up on Succession, followed by a pilates class on The Mirror.
3. Egg white omelette with feta and a slice of turkey (plus shiitakes if I have them).

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Pritika Swarup, Founder & CEO of Prakti Beauty
1. Stretching.
2. Meditation.
3. Setting my intention for the day. It’s very important for me to have some time to myself in the morning because everything usually comes at me at once when the clock strikes 8:30 AM.

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Mara Brock Akil, Producer & Screenwriter
1. Thank God.
2. Connect with my husband and sons.
3. Drink green tea.

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Brittany Bromley, Interior Designer
1. Hazelnut coffee with heavy cream for my cafe au lait, plus my favorite acid-kicking mineral supplement.
2. I’m a really early riser (often up by 4 AM). The quiet early AM hours allow me to answer emails and plan the day’s priority list so I can feel prepared for my day and be totally present for morning snuggles with my girls when they wake up at 7!
3. Exercise is a must for my mental well-being, so every day involves a workout with my trainer. Some days it’s cardio barre, some days it’s Pilates, others are weights, but that time is just for “me” and helps me reset and feel mentally ready for the day ahead.

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Sarah Paiji Yoo, Founder of Blueland
1. I usually wake up a little bit before 7 AM and do not touch my phone until I begin work around 9 AM. This helps me stay present and enjoy time with my children in the morning.
2. I’ll also take time to drink lots of water, leisurely enjoy a cup of coffee.
3. When the weather permits, I take a morning walk to get outside before the work day truly begins.

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