What do you do first thing in the morning?

No, this is not a pick up line. 😉 I’m talking about Darren Hardy’s concept of Bookending your day. What does that mean?

Bookends are those items that go on the ends of a row of books so that what…the books don’t fall over!

Bookending your day is what goes on the the start and finish of your day so that YOU don’t fall over!

Let’s see how it looks: Morning Bookend

For me, I get up at 5am, shut off my alarm (strategically placed in the bathroom so I have to get out of bed to turn it off), greet my morning Jam Session Challenger Acceptors and state my goal for today’s Jam Session. Then, I immediately drink two 16oz glasses of water as the coffee finishes its automatic brew from the timer I set the night before. HYDRATE…very important start to the day. Pour the coffee, sit in the “quiet corner” as we like to call it, read from the Bible app, post a verse that struck me, check the Facebook groups for any value I might give; it’s now 6am. JAM SESSION TIME, BABY!

Enter the “Sunshine Room” (it’s painted my favorite yellow color and I just love this room) and sit at the desk.

I take the most important project to propel the business forward, having already established the night before, which item of that project will take me 60-90 minutes, and work on completing that goal.

True Jam Session:

  • No phone alerts (airplane mode)
  • No email checking
  • No Social Media
  • No texting
  • Single Tasking on specific, measurable, checkable goal

This is not the time for multi-tasking. Using this concept of Jam Sessions, also from Darren Hardy, catapults my day into success. Why? Well, what happens at 7:00 or 7:30 for you? Your crew is waking, maybe calling in sick, rain is reeking havoc on your schedule, things need to be moved, and ALL CRAZINESS of business breaks loose, right?


Therefore, by starting your day dark and early with a routine that

  1. You enjoy (coffee, being inspired by a book)
  2. Accomplishes a goal (you feel like a Super Hero or Rock Star, as well you should for such a feat so early!!) on a major project
  3. Is finished before the day starts for most people, most employees you have


Don’t believe me? GOOD – TRY it out and then tell me how it worked for you! You’ll be a believer! Need some accountability to make sure you’re up at 5am? I do, too, so we have a GroupMe group of super achievers just like you, whom we greet in the morning. Email me, april@burnettmarketing.com, and I’ll invite you to the group so you can have accountability and be successful in getting up at 5am, even if it’s 5am Pacific time and 9am Eastern. No problem. Chime in at 5am in your time zone.

Bookend: Evening

What do you do from 7pm-10pm every night? Watch T.V.? What a movie? Easy to do; don’t fall into the T.V. trap, the Pacifier! Cancel your cable; get Netflix for “Movie Treat Night” on Friday nights with your family –a treat because you’ve earned it with no TV Sunday night – Thursday night!

Now, for what you WILL do Sun-Thurs evenings:

7pm: Get ready for bed (get kids ready: teeth brushed, faces washed, etc)

7:30pm: Everyone in bed – kids go to sleep, you are going to finish strong with an inspiring book in bed – a book from Steve’s list of Top 50 Must Reads, perhaps. Check out one of my favorites from the list, The Little Red Book of Sales, by Jeffry Gittomer or The Magic of Thinking Big by someone awesome whom I don’t know off the top of my head right this moment. 😉

Read until your eyes fall off, I mean asleep. Don’t push yourself, just read until your body is tired and says it’s time to go to sleep. Everyone is different and needs different amounts of sleep to maintain getting up at 5am. Some of you may be able to get to bed at 10pm and get up at 5am – I would love to be that person, but I’m not. I fall out at 8:00 or 8:30pm.

See, it matters what we think and we need to fill our minds with GREAT ideas from great books before we fall asleep and when we wake up, fill it up again. It’s so easy to let “Stinkin’ Thinkin’ ” enter your mind, but we must take our minds captive like a massive ship! We do this by reading an inspiring book at night and in the morning.

That’s it! You have just taken control over and mastered EACH day! You are not going to get rocked by the waves of craziness that happen – things we don’t have control over, for the most part – that happen when the day begins for your crew/employees. Craziness will happen, we know that. But what we have done is taken control over what we CAN control and made each day a success before it really even begins so when the waves hit, it doesn’t rock our boats like it used it. We just take action and move on, knowing that we’ve already accomplished our most important task and we feel like rock stars!! Woohoo!! Like that song, “Ain’t nothin’ gonna slow me down…whoa no…I’ve got to keep on moving on…oh, yeah…” Can you name that song? 😉 You may even do a little dance after that morning Jam Session and give your spouse a “high-five” because you’re amazing! Way to go!


So, the great BOOKEND CHALLENGE: are you going to do this? Are you going to take the challenge? Are you going to email me to join the GroupMe for Morning Jam Session-ers? I guess the real question is what Eric Thomas talks about: How badly to you want to be successful?

You’ll succeed when you want to succeed as badly as you want to breathe.


Let’s be honest. There were times when I didn’t want to succeed as much as I wanted to…sleep…eat…etc. How bad do you want it? This is a game changer. Let’s do this! Let’s roll!


Action Steps:

  1. Comment with “I’m a super achiever! I accept your challenge!
  2. Email april@dybcoach.com so I can add you to the Group – this is a phone app, so include your phone number will eliminate a step for you
  3. Give someone a high five right now. High fives are really a good way to boost your mood and the one receiving the high five. It’s really hard not to smile when giving or receiving a high five. Do it. 😀
  4. Bookend your day – JUST ONCE – and tell us how that changed your day! (comment back on this post, email us, use Facebook and tag us, whatever, just let us know how it changed your day)

About the Author

Steve and I built up, streamlined, and sold Burnett 1-800-PAINTING--- quintupling it in under 3 years during what some called a "bad economy" before selling. We are now helping other painting contractors and entrepreneurs to Double Their Business while reducing their hours. We've been the struggling painters until we figured out what works and now love to share that info with you, to help you do the same! Whether you are building up to sell or pass on to your children, we are here to help you make it a reality.