8 Morning rituals for project managers

8 Morning rituals for project managers


Project management can be stressful, complicated and at times disastrous. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Each day there are many projects that succeed even though there are many that fail. One of the keys to a successful project is a competent project manager who is capable to manage his energy and keep his calm during stressful situations. So here are some morning rituals, project managers can adopt, to navigate tough, demanding or stressful situations while managing their project.

1- Meditation
Meditation has become the buzzword in the personal development scene of the modern world, even though it has existed since ages. Meditation can sharpen a project managers attention, memory, and emotional intelligence. It can reduce considerably a project manager’s anxiety under duress. It can help bring the mind towards the present moment when things seem chaotic in the office. Meditation can help strengthen a project managers ability to regulate his or her emotions so that they can communicate effectively during tense situations, thereby improving relationships. A 20 minutes meditation session every morning can do wonders to any project manager.

2- Journaling
In case you don’t like meditating, journaling is a very good option. Keeping a personal journal where project managers write and reflect about their challenges and what they have accomplished for their projects contributes to their wellbeing. Project managers can use journals to record the progress of their projects to keep them motivated in the long slog of reaching their project milestones. Jotting down in a diary professional relationship issues and possible solutions can improve communication and collaboration with colleagues. In a 2012 Person of the Year interview with Time Magazine, President Obama once said, “The process of converting a jumble of thoughts into coherent sentences makes you ask tougher questions.”

3- Exercising
It is a known fact that cardio exercising and weight lifting workouts improves one’s self-esteem by regularly releasing endorphins. Endorphins also trigger positive feelings in the body. Also, Regular exercise can help project managers reduce stress, ward off anxiety and feelings of depression and most importantly provide a good night’s sleep after a hectic day managing projects. If a project manager is obliged to choose from this list, it should be exercising.

4- Gratitude
Many project managers obsess about the things that go wrong in their projects. But often there are projects where things go right. Even in a difficult project there are many things that work out well. So, it is important to count one’s blessing, list them down on paper and reflect on them to develop an attitude of gratitude. Practicing gratitude every morning can help project managers develop perspective on challenging issues of their projects.

5- Yoga
Practicing regular yoga is known to reduce stress, develop a calm mind and a healthy body. Whenever one begins a yoga session he or she sets an intention for the session. It can be a positive thought like compassion, kindness or love. Then the project manager does a series of poses that unlocks negative energy knots and releases positive energy and emotions. Thus, contributing to the overall health of a person. Unlike other sports you don’t have to do all the poses perfectly. It is recommended to do as far and as much possible without straining the body. This helps develop a project manages patience and persistence. Yoga can help project managers to navigate through the ebb and flow of project management.

6- Planning the day 
Project managers are good at planning their projects. But how many of you plan your day in the morning? It is not enough to plan your projects. It is essential to plan your day at sunrise or the day before so that you get things done. Planning the day ahead will help project managers get some certainty in the uncertain world of project management.

7- Creating a to do list
The best way to plan your day as a project manager is to create a to do list each morning. And, choose one or two major tasks from your to do list that day which will make a difference to your project. It is human to forget things, hence listing your priorities can help you get things done.

8- Visualization
Once you have planned the day ahead and created a to do list, it is wise to visualize how your day is going to unfold. For example, if you have a meeting with project stakeholders or team members, you can visualize that the meeting is running smoothly. If you are going to have a difficult and important conversation with a project sponsor or a client, you can visualize a positive win-win solution.

The above practices can help project managers find focus to common project management challenges.