Summary of The 5 AM Club by Robin Sharma

3 Jun 2022

summary of the 5 am club

by robin sharma written by alyssa

burnett and quick read

narrated by alex smith

introduction what's the secret to

becoming a billionaire

there must be one because if we all knew

how to get there surely everybody would

have a billion dollars by now

but the truth is that there is no

singular secret to success

everyone employs different methods on

the road to achieving their dreams

and in the case of one very successful


that secret was starting his day at 5am

in fact

he was so confident in this method that

he attributed all of his success

to that one simple practice instead of

his natural business acumen or the hours

he'd invested in his company

and fortunately for you it's not a

secret through the course of this

summary we'll learn how to join what he

called the 5am club

and why it can revolutionize your life

we'll even take a look at some

interesting facts like

why slowing down your brain is so

important why early mornings are key for

jump starting your day

and what a successful morning routine

looks like

chapter 1 the 5 am club

for the purpose of this summary let's

imagine a group of people

and let's say their roles are similar to

those of the members of the breakfast


we have an entrepreneur who feels his

life lacks purpose

we have a frustrated artist who's trying

to spark their creativity

and last but not least we have a

billionaire mentor

a wacky character with some

unconventional success secrets to share

so let's say they all meet at a

professional conference which centers

around a keynote speaker known as

the spellbinder a business guru renowned

for his ability to captivate audiences

and impart life-changing success tips

so following the keynote speech the

billionaire approaches our artist and

entrepreneur in disguise

rather than dressing like a billionaire

he was in fact severely underdressed for

the occasion

but this too was part of a calculated

strategy to remind himself and others

that money isn't everything and that you

can't judge someone's wealth or worth by

their appearance

he often dressed as though he was very

poor indeed

given his appearance you can imagine the

other surprise when he told them

that he'd made a fortune by following

the spellbinder's advice

and that the spellbinder was actually

his personal mentor

already intrigued the two listened as he

told them how the spellbinder had taught


that many people want extraordinary

things to happen to them but the truly

great people

understand that they can create these

extraordinary events themselves

so when he told them that the key to

unlocking an extraordinary future

lay in one tip that was more important

than anything else they couldn't wait to

find out what it was

they were even more surprised when he

told them that the secret was as simple

as crafting

a world-beating morning routine but when

the billionaire offered to teach them

everything he knew the next day

if they met him at 5am they jumped at

the chance

and that's how their journey began

chapter 2 elite performers get up at 5


like most of us our artist and

entrepreneur weren't used to getting up

that early in the morning

and they listened blearly as their new

mentor told them that getting up at 5am

had taught him to break free from the


that so easily ensnares people he also

informed them

that rising at this hour had enabled a

number of successful people to

revolutionize their productivity

and rise to the top of their game

including such notable greats as mozart

and john grisham here's why it works

we all have a limited amount of mental

energy for each day

think of it as your cognitive bandwidth

that limited bandwidth gets occupied by

a variety of conflicting sources

throughout the day

from the moment you wake up everything

from your job and your relationships

to the news and social media are

demanding your attention

these constant demands leave us feeling

pressured to multitask

ping-ponging our attention back and

forth from one thing to another

so that our ability to focus on one

consistent thing is severely weakened

but by lunchtime we've already been

inundated with so many demands

that our ability to focus on anything is

almost depleted

but starting your day at five am

effectively hot wires your brain so you

can maximize your focus

that's all thanks to the concept of

transient hypofrontality

put simply this means that when you wake

up at 5 am

your brain's prefrontal cortex which

processes rational thought

is temporarily impaired so if like me

you typically start your day being

plagued by worries doubts and fears

one advantage of getting up at 5am is

the ability to temporarily silence them

and as an added bonus during this time

of day

your brain is pre-programmed to

stimulate the production of dopamine and


both of which will make you happier and

give you a more peaceful start to the


so when you minimize unproductive

thoughts and negative self-talk

and replace them with energy peace and


it stands to reason that you'll enter a

natural state of flow in which you're

happier and more focused

and if you start your day with that kind

of boost there's no limit to what you

can accomplish

but if that's not enough to convince you

to forego a few hours of sleep

you might also want to consider this if

you want to be at the top of your game

and class yourself amongst the top

5 percent of the world's elite

performers you have to be willing to

make commitments

that the other 95 percent of the world

aren't going to make

and most people definitely aren't

willing to get up at 5am

so if you want a huge competitive

advantage this is a great way to get


chapter 3 how to be a history maker

there are people who accomplish things

and then there are people who make


and become household names the latter

category is comprised of people who set


break boundaries and make successful

contributions so significant

that they are immortalized through their

success but what's the difference

and what determines the type of success

you have according to our billionaire


a history maker is defined by their four

areas of focus

the first is their ability to capitalize

on their talents

this doesn't mean that they're the most

talented people but rather that they

make the most of what they have

so instead of comparing your gifts to

someone else's and assuming you don't

have what it takes

capitalize on the talents you do have

and use them to make a difference

the second key area of focus is the

ability to free yourself from


this is especially vital because it's

probably the number one problem that

holds people back

and whether your distraction comes in

the form of social media addiction

or a toxic relationship that drains you

of your energy neither of these

distractions can remain in your life

if you want to be a winner so to

cultivate a winning worldview

it's crucial that you focus simplify and


start by eliminating multitasking from

your life and become a purist instead

devoting your attention only to a few

key projects instead of spreading

yourself thin

between loads of little tasks throughout

the day it's also vital that you

eliminate distractions

so take an aggressive spring cleaning

approach to the mental clutter of your


turn off notifications when it's

inhibiting your focus cancel activities

that don't add joy and value to your


and most importantly give yourself a

distraction free hour to jump start your


by joining the 5 a.m club thirdly

it's also important to understand the

power of day stacking

put simply day stacking means that

accomplishing a few small tasks each day

is more important than doing a couple of

big things once in a while so work on


one small skill or ability a little bit

at a time each day

if you want to get on top of your email

inbox cultivate a better daily routine

or improve your performance in a few

little areas

this is the perfect way to do it and

last but not least the final key area of

focus for history makers

is practicing personal mastery this

concept is based off psychologist anders

erickson's theory

that a person must invest 2.75 hours of

daily practice and a skill before they

reach the level of elite mastery

so if you want to master yourself and

truly become capable of orchestrating a

successful future

invest the first two hours of each day

and working deeply on yourself

your mindset and your attitude

chapter 4 your four interior empires

if you've ever attended professional

conferences chances are that you

like our artist and entrepreneur have

frequently heard that you should work on

your mindset

but the billionaire acknowledged that

the mindset is actually only one

of four interior empires which require

constant attention

and personal improvement and although

working on your mindset

is great if that is the only area you're

focused on that means you're ignoring

your heart set

health set and soul set so let's take a

look at each of these sets

and their roles in your life your heart

set is exactly what it sounds like

it's the state of your emotional

well-being and because each of your four

interior empires are connected

the strength and stability of your

mindset doesn't matter if your heart set

is in shambles

and even though sigmund freud has

largely been discredited he was right

when it was asserted that

unexpressed emotions will never die they

are buried alive

and they will come forth later in uglier


so if you consider that truth and the

impact that emotional instability can

have on your life

it follows naturally that when you

develop your emotional well-being

you're laying the foundation for a

healthier more stable life across the


your health set is also important

because as you might imagine

you're pretty limited by what you can

accomplish if you're in poor health

so commit to your future success by

taking care of yourself in the present

and making a commitment to boost your

health and productivity by pursuing


the physical and emotional benefits of

exercise are well documented

but it doesn't hurt to be reminded that

exercise can increase the flow of

positive hormones

and reduce stress both of which can

greatly benefit your personal life and


and last but not least it's crucial that

you also focus on your soul set

think of your soul set as your

spirituality or what keeps you centered

by focusing on your soul set you'll be

able to connect with the truest version

of yourself

and relinquish your ties to the temporal

and superficial elements of everyday


getting up at 5am can help with this too

because this early start will give you a

window of clarity

and opportunity which you can use to

reflect on what you have to offer the


chapter 5 the 20 20 20 formula

so now that we've learned about the four

interior empires let's take a look at

some practical everyday strategies we

can use to develop them

because although getting up at 5am might

sound like a magic cure-all

nothing could be farther from the truth

in fact unless you use that time to be


and take actionable steps towards

personal improvement 5 am will be no

different from any other hour you could

get up

instead as you've probably guessed the

truth is that the real magic lies

in how you use that time and the

billionaires 20 20 2020 method

is the perfect way to optimize your


operating on the principle that you

should use 20 minutes to move

20 minutes to reflect and 20 minutes to

grow this method taps into each of your

four inner

empires and helps you strengthen them

for a healthy start to your day

so first start by engaging in 20 minutes

of vigorous exercise

i know that's probably the last thing

you want to do at 5 am but remember what

we talked about earlier

about how your brain is free of

inhibitions and stress at this hour

the good news is that if you can spring

out of bed at 5am

you'll sort of get a chance to catch

your brain off guard before it's awake

enough to remind you

that you don't like exercising at 5am so

take advantage of the opportunity

and concentrate on moving vigorously

enough to really work up a sweat

you want to specifically ensure you're

sweaty because sweat decreases the

cortisol or fear hormone in your brain

and generates the protein bdnf which

promotes the formulation of new neural

connections this means that just

20 minutes of active sweating can

actually program your brain to think


which will enhance your productivity for

the day once you've done that

use the little window of time between 5

20 to 5 40 am

as a time of deep reflection and

solitude before your day is flooded with

conflicting pressures and distractions

take a few moments to reflect on what's

most important to you and use this time

of reflection to center your focus on

your top priorities

once you've taken about 10 minutes to

reflect use the remaining 10 minutes to

write your thoughts down in a journal

document your ambitions fears


and the things you're grateful for in a

journal as you do so

envision yourself surrendering these

stresses to the paper and removing their

weight from your own heart and mind

after you're finished writing use your

remaining few minutes to meditate

studies show that meditation also helps

reduce fear

so if you start your day by engaging in

two activities that decrease your fear


you'll have a doubly fearless start to

your day meditating on the new insights

you've gained through your reflection

and journaling

can also help you to feel calmer and

more centered and you'll be able to

carry this sense of peace with you

throughout the day

now it's time to use the last 20 minutes

of your morning's first hour

this is the time for growth so take

these 20 minutes to learn

whether you're listening to a podcast

that stimulates thought or reading a


or learning something new about business

psychology or innovation

you can tailor your learning experience

to the interests that most benefit you

and your career keep in mind that every

successful history maker is also defined

by their love of learning

and commitment to growth so dedicate

yourself to spending 20 minutes of each


in pursuit of knowledge so there you

have it

this method not only provides you with a

ready-made perfect morning routine

it also shows you how to unlock the full

potential that's accessible to any


of the 5am club

chapter 6 embrace sleep

a system which asks you to get up at 5am

probably doesn't sound like one which

prioritizes sleep

but in fact a good night's sleep is

integral to achieving life-changing


with the 5 a.m club because as the

billionaire explains to his new proteges

research has shown that sleep is one of

the key factors at play when it comes to

predicting life expectancy

and how you spend the last hour of your

day is every bit as crucial as the way

you spend your first

if you're like pretty much everybody

today you know that whether you're a

working professional

a student or a parent we're all sleep


studies show that technology can be

pinpointed as the primary source of our

sleep deprivation

especially given that the blue lights

produced by our phones and tvs

our favorite devices to look at before

we go to sleep reduce melatonin

which is precisely the chemical that

promotes sleep

so in order to cultivate healthy sleep

patterns leading sleep research

advocates disconnecting from your tech

devices no later than 8 pm

doing so will help you achieve a better

quality of sleep and feel

truly well rested by your 5 am waking


however sleeping isn't the only way to

rejuvenate yourself

another great strategy the billionaire

recommends for maximizing your


is something called the twin cycle of

elite performance

here's how it works rather than burning

yourself out with prolonged periods

of frantic productivity where you try to

accomplish everything that needs to be


oscillate between periods of passionate

work and deep renewal to bring balance

to your life

by intentionally dedicating your time to

relaxation as well as work

you're recognizing the value of mental

health and optimizing your potential

and as you make active efforts at

self-care you minimize the potential for


thus giving yourself room to grow in

both a performance phase

and a recovery phase however that may be

difficult for some of us to accept

those who operate on an all-work no-play

mentality like our entrepreneur in the


might struggle with a necessity of

slowing down and taking time off

we might even feel guilty when we're not

working as if we're using our time for

less worthy things

but if we remember the value of tending

to our interior empires

we can recognize the necessity of

balance and cultivate a healthier life

final summary owning the first hours of

your morning is critical to unlocking

your potential for each day

so if you want to boost your creativity

and optimize your productivity

make a habit of getting up at 5am each

day and use that first hour to follow

the 20 20 20 method

so you can jump start your day

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