The 5 AM Club by Robin Sharma

This book is packed with motivation, inspiration, and served with practical formulas and practices you can use.

Table of Contents

A quick note

This summary is a bit long, so feel free to read it in parts or just the subjects you find the most appealing.

In a few sentences

This book aims to uplift every person to fulfill their potential. Through mastery of your personal and professional life. It gives practical ways to improve the overall quality of your life.

All the insights of this book are told through a story, which is a refreshing way to read a personal growth book.

Main ideas

  • “Own your mornings, Elevate your life”
  • Creating one amazing masterwork is much better than a thousand ordinary ones.
  • Addiction to technology is ruining your productivity.
  • Your daily habits determine your success more than the genes you got.
  • Determination and self-discipline beat talent every time.

Who should read it

This book can only take effect if the reader of it is open to change. If you feel you are ready to take massive action and improve your life, this book is for you.


Every chapter is a detailed explanation of something you can do. I’ll let you choose which of the chapters you want to act on yourself.

The summary

Rules for Life

RULE #1  “An addiction to distraction is the end of your creative production. take one hour for yourself before dawn, in the serenity that lies beyond the clutches of complexity, to prepare yourself for a world-class day.”

RULE #2 “Excuses breed no genius. Just because you haven’t installed the early-rising habit before doesn’t mean you can’t do it now. Small daily improvements, when done consistently over time, lead to stunning results.”

RULE #3“All change is hard at first, messy in the middle, and gorgeous at the end. Everything you now find easy you first found difficult.”

RULE #4 “To have the results The Top 5% of producers have, you must start doing what 95% of people are unwilling to do. As you start to live like this, the majority will call you crazy. Remember that being labeled a freak is the price of greatness. “

RULE #5 “When you feel like surrendering, continue. Triumph loves the relentless.”

The 2x3x Mindset

To double your income and impact, triple your investment in two core areas:

  1. Personal mastery
  2. Professional capability

The 3 Step Success Formula

With better daily awareness you can make better daily choices, and with better daily choices you’ll start seeing better daily results.

The 4 Focuses of History-Makers

Capitalization IQ

“Dedication and discipline beats brilliance and giftedness every day of the week”

You are dealt a bunch of cards when you are born, but it is so much more of how you play them than what you got. Capitalize the gifts you received to the highest degree.

If you’re running a mental narrative that says that you don’t have what it takes to succeed then you won’t even try getting there. We act in alignment with our self-identity. You’ll never rise higher than your personal story. And so, we must change the story we tell ourselves.

Freedom from distraction 

“An addiction to distraction is the death of your creative production.”

Filling valuable hours with meaningless things is the drug of choice for most people. We know we shouldn’t be wasting time on zero-value activities, but emotionally we just can’t beat the temptation.

There is a ‘broken focus syndrome’ because people fill their professional and personal lives with so many gadgets, interruptions, and cyber noise.

One of the fascinating traits of our ancient brain is its negative bias. To keep us safe, it’s far less interested in what’s positive in our environment and significantly more invested in letting us know what’s bad.

The primitive brain senses our growth, knows we’re leaving our safe harbor of the known and gets fired up because we’re leaving our traditional ways of being.

It senses the threat, even though the threat is essential to our personal growth. It gets frightened by the change.

You need to have the guts to push past the alarm bells of our ancient brains pleading with us not to reach for our brilliance.

Cognitive bandwidth: We have a limited amount of mental capacity when we rise each morning. And as we give our attention to numerous influences we leave bits of our focus on each activity we pursue.

work on one high-value activity at a time instead of relentlessly multitasking, you are far less productive when you switch from so many activities in so little time.

When you’re up early and all alone, away from the overstimulation and noise, your attention isn’t being fragmented by technology, meetings, and other forces that can limit maximum productivity. And so the prefrontal cortex, that part of your brain responsible for rational thinking—as well as constant worrying—actually shuts off for a short time.

The solitude, silence, and stillness of daybreak also triggers the production of neurotransmitters like dopamine, the inspirational fuel that serves superproducers so well, and serotonin, the pleasure drug of the brain. Automatically and naturally, you enter ‘The Flow State.’

Personal mastery practice

“Triumph belongs to the one who prepares the most.”

“Elite performers must invest at least two hours and forty-four minutes of daily improvement on their chosen skill for ten years.

To improve our personal mastery we need to work on 4 things:

Mindset: Your deepest beliefs drive your daily behavior. the way you perceive the world drives the way you perform in it. Yet, a mindset without a magnificently purified Heartset is a hollow triumph.

Heartset: This is your emotional life. Even with battle-proofed beliefs and the distinguished thinking of a world-class Mindset, you won’t win if your heart is full of anger, sadness, disappointment, resentment, and fear.

Sigmund Freud wrote that “unexpressed emotions will never die. They are buried alive and they will come forth later in uglier ways.”

Longevity: Do not die. You can’t lead your field if you are dead. Beautiful things happen once you commit to peak fitness.

Soulset: is all about remembering who you truly are. Improve your awareness of-and relationship with-this most magnificent part of you.

Day staking

“Concentrate monomaniacally on creating great days, and they’ll stack into a gorgeous life.”

What you do each day matters more than what you do once in a while. Consistency is the key ingredient of mastery.


The 5 scientific truths behind excellent habits

Truth #1: World-class willpower isn’t an inborn strength, but a skill developed through relentless practice. Getting up at dawn is perfect self-control Training.”

Truth #2: Personal discipline is a muscle. The more you stretch it, the stronger it grows. Therefore, the samurais of self-regulation actively create conditions of hardship to build their natural power.”

Truth #3: Like other muscles, willpower weakens when tired. Recovery is, therefore, absolutely necessary for the expression of mastery. And to manage decision fatigue.”

Truth #4: Installing any great habit successfully follows a distinct four-part pattern for automation of the routine. Follow it explicitly for lasting results.”

Truth #5: Increasing self-control in one area of your life elevates self-control in all areas of your life. This is why joining The 5 AM Club is the game-changing habit that will lift everything else that you do.”

How to install a new habit

To program in a new ritual, make sure you have a reward in place. The reward is what kick starts and then grows your drive to get the new habit done. Always use the power of rewards for the advancement of your triumphs.

Your reward for rising with the sun could be a nice piece of dark chocolate for dessert at lunch. It could be taking a nap later in the day.

You wake up each morning with a full battery of self-control. That’s why you do the activities that are most important to the rise of your inner empires at the time when your capacity is strongest.

You also have a limited amount of willpower and mental focus each morning. So, rather than wasting it over many trivial choices, automate as many basic things as possible, so you concentrate on just a few important activities.

You need to overcome your deeply ingrained habits. You need to rise above your own forces of gravity until your escape velocity kicks in. The beginning is the most challenging part.

In the first stage, you need to understand the negative thoughts, cranky emotions and strong desires to surrender are a normal part of the process. The first twenty-two days are supposed to feel like a mild form of torture.

The second stage will make you feel confused, stressed out, and frustrated. You’ll feel like quitting even more and dismissing your decision as a terrible one.

Cortisol, the fear hormone, is elevated at this time so you’ll feel scared a lot of the time. Your brain is forming new circuitry through neuroplasticity and the manufacturing of better pathways in your emotional core.

All that’s happening within your brain is consuming huge reserves of energy. So, you’ll be exhausted often at stage two of habit installation.

In the end the willpower you were using to lay down the new habit is now freed up for another world-class behavior

A few tips to smooth the process

#1 To make a habit last, never install it alone. Support groups have long been a proven way to make improvements that last.”

#2 The teacher learns the most. Educating others on all I’ve shared will be a gift you provide to Yourself.”

#3 When you most feel like quitting is the time you must continue advancing.”

The 20/20/20 Formula

“Own your mornings, Elevate your life”

The 20/20/20 formula is a practice that aims to improve the beginning of your day by improving critical aspects of your life, and therefore exponentially improving the quality of your day.

Science has shown there’s a vital link between physical fitness and cognitive ability. The sweating from a powerful workout releases BDNF – brain-derived neurotrophic factor, which supercharges that organ for a winning day.

Some quietude and solitude for yourself before the complexity starts arriving, and your family needs your energy, and all your other responsibilities take over.

Contemplate how you’re living and who you hope to become. Be thoughtful and intentional about the values you want to be loyal to.

Pocket #1

Train hard for 20 minutes, it needs to be intense and make you sweat. Simple as that.

Pocket #2

Think ahead for your day, how you wish to behave, what needs to happen for this to be a great day, for a legendary life. Invent, visualize, and dream your future.

Pre-Performance Blueprint: written statement of your ideal day ahead. It works beautifully to increase your focus and discipline to get things done.

Journal for a few minutes. Don’t try to think too much, just download your thoughts to paper. Use this journaling time for gratitude practice, for processing frustrations, disappointment, and negative experiences in your life, and also for the joys in your life.

Meditate for a few minutes.

Pocket #3

The 2x3x Mindset. This is where you raise your own value.

Study the lives of the greatest men and women of the past by consuming their autobiographies. Learn about the latest advancements in psychology. Devour works on innovation and communication, productivity and leadership, prosperity and history.

Watch documentaries on how the best do what they do, and grew into who they are.

Listen to audiobooks on personal mastery, creativity, and business-building.


You need five complete ninety-minute sleep cycles. That’s seven and a half hours of sleep each night.

The amazing day

The 10 Tactics of a Lifelong Genius

Tactic #1: The Tight Bubble of Total Focus (TBTF) 

The Insight: “An addiction to distraction is the death of your creative production.”

Your attraction to digital interruption is costing you your fortune, financial-cognitively, energetically, physically, and spiritually. 

Your bubble has a porous membrane that encircles it so that you decide what information, which people, and the nature of the activities that enter your orbit. Anything negative, toxic, and impure gets blocked at the gate.

The Implementation: Solitude for a scheduled period each day, in a positive environment that floods you with creativity, energy, happiness and the feeling the work you’re doing is for the upliftment of humanity. 

Specific application ideas include selling your television, avoiding the news for the remainder of your days, staying out of noisy shopping malls where you buy things you don’t need, unfriending energy-draining people you follow on social platforms, turning off all notifications while you’re in the TBTF and deleting apps with constant announcements.

Tactic #2: The 90/90/1 Rule

The Insight: “Doing real work versus artificial work, daily and with absolute consistency, will give you a Gargantuan Competitive Advantage.”

concentrate all your attention and effort on one core project at a time so you harness the fullness of your cognitive capacity. When you show up for work, it’s not the time to shop online, gossip, or check messages. It’s showtime.

The Implementation: For the next ninety days, schedule yourself to invest the first ninety minutes of your workday on the one activity that, when completed, will cause you to own your field.

This ninety-minute period must be completely free of any noise and interruptions. Place your devices in a bag marked, “for my 90/90/1 period.” And then leave that bag in another room. Installing clear boundary fences that block access to temptations is a potent tactic to decrease them.

Tactic #3: The 60/10 Method

The Insight: Structure work cycles and alternate bursts of deep focus 

and ferocious intensity of performance with periods of real rest and full recovery. In other words, work in a balance.

The Implementation: After you’ve run the 90/90/1 segment of your workday, use a timer and work at your best for sixty minutes straight while sitting or standing quietly, in your Tight Bubble of Total Focus.

Train yourself not to move. Just concentrate. And create the highest results you can possibly make. After your sixty-minute productivity sprint is done, refuel for ten minutes.

Ideas for this recovery cycle include going for a quick walk in fresh air, reading a book, meditating, visualizing, or listening to energizing music with headphones on.

Tactic #4: The Daily 5 Concept 

The Insight: the most effective business leaders are at their productive peak on the days when, even if they’ve faced some serious setbacks, they’ve actively engaged their mindset on the progress they’ve made. 

train your attention on making consistent 1% wins and micro-achievements throughout each hour of your workday. Small daily achievements, when done consistently over time, definitely do lead to stunning results.

The Implementation: During the second pocket of your Victory Hour, list the five tiny targets you wish to accomplish over the day ahead for you to feel it was one well-spent.

Tactic #5: The 2nd Wind Workout (2WW) 

The Insight: Beat the exhaustion most people feel after work, re-energize your willpower batteries so you improve your evening choices.

The Implementation: To execute The 2WW practice, schedule a second workout at the end of your workday to give you a second wind for a great evening.

One of the finest activities you could possibly do at this time is a one-hour nature walk. You’ll gain another block of time free from digital interruption, letting you do more deep thinking and downloading of valuable ideas.

Sixty-minute mountain bike ride, having a long swim, or attending a yoga class. In running this routine, you’ll also burn even more calories and speed up your metabolic rate, reducing body fat.

Tactic #6: The 2 Massage Protocol (2MP)

The Insight: massage therapy is a modality that generates significant improvements in brain performance, mood, and ability to fight stress.

The Implementation: To apply The 2MP, lock two ninety-minute massages onto your weekly schedule.

Tactic #7: Traffic University

The Insight: You spend a large majority of your life commuting, spend this time wisely.

The Implementation: Listening to audiobooks and consuming valuable podcasts.

Tactic #8: The Dream Team Technique

The Insight: Outsource and then automate all activities except those within the realm of your mastery. This will free up huge amounts of your time and will improve your focus.

The Implementation: Delegate tasks that not only are a poor use of your hours but also diminish your happiness. 

Build a dream team that could include a fitness trainer who you work with regularly, a nutritionist, a massage therapist, a financial coach to fortify your fortune, a relationship adviser to help romantic life, and more.

Tactic #9: The Weekly Design System (WDS) 

The Insight: You know that things that get scheduled are the things that get done.

The Implementation: Carve out and then ritualize thirty minutes early each Sunday morning to create your “Blueprint for a Beautiful Week.” 

Start the process by writing a story in your journal about the highlights from the seven days you just lived. Then record your lessons learned and optimizations for making the coming week even better. 

Next, on a large piece of paper that has each day running from 5 AM to 11 PM on it, note down all your commitments. The key here is to list more than your business meetings and work projects. 

Set clear periods for your Victory Hour, your 90/90/1 sessions, your 60/10 cycles, and your 2nd Wind Workouts, as well as time for your loved ones, blocks for your portfolio of passions, and segments for your errands.

Tactic #10: The 60 Minute Student 

The Insight: The more you know, the better you will do. Legendary leaders all have boundless curiosity and a limitless appetite to grow into their greatest selves. 

The Implementation: For at least sixty minutes a day, study. Do whatever it takes to fireproof your commitment to relentless growth.

reading every good book you can get your hands on, reviewing your journal notes, working through an online program, talking with a mentor and watching skill-building videos.

The Twin Cycles of Elite Performance

“Your growth happens when you’re resting,”

HEC – High Excellence Cycle

DRC – Deep Refueling Cycle

This model is about working less to get more done. You must learn how to balance working intensely with deep rest and recovery so you can remain fresh and strong over a long career. 

Your assets of genius surge when you actively push them past their usual limits and then allow for a period of regeneration.

The linear approach of ‘work harder to produce better’ is seriously flawed. It isn’t sustainable. It just leads to burnout. You absolutely need to alternate High Excellence Cycles with Deep Refueling Cycles.

Take at least two full days off each week. No technology. ‘Zero Device Days’. Full recovery. And every quarter, take off even more time.


“To know ever-increasing amounts of happiness, trust what makes you feel happy. Your heart knows where you need to be. Do those pursuits that feed your bliss. Only be in those places that make you feel most alive.“

The Billionaire’s Maxims

The Billionaire’s Maxim #1 

“To Create Magic in the World, Own the Magic within Yourself. Grow more comfortable being still. So you start to hear the whispers of the great genius who slumbers within you. In restfulness, you’ll remember all you truly Are.”

“Ultimately, you’re the only person you’ll be with your entire life. Why not strengthen your relationship with your greatest self.”

The Billionaire’s Maxim #2 

“Collect Miraculous Experiences over Material Things. The pursuit 

wasn’t about acquiring things. It was about exploring life. Laugh more often, dance more regularly, and play more frequently.“

“Never sacrifice your well-being and quality of life for greater annual income or larger net worth. become a collector of awesome experiences instead of a consumer of material things.”

The Billionaire’s Maxim #3 

“Failure Inflates Fearlessness. It is impossible to live without failing at something unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all.”

“You can allow yourself to become paralyzed by a fear of rejection or you can go out there and astonish the world. But you just don’t get to do both.”

The Billionaire’s Maxim #4 

“Proper Use of Your Primal Power Creates Your Personal Utopia. These four resources that will allow you to materialize miracles in the world are your thoughts, your feelings, your words, and your deeds.”

The Billionaire’s Maxim #5 

“Avoid Bad People. Never underestimate the power of your associations. Stay away from all drama queens and negativity kings.”

The Billionaire’s Maxim #6 

“Money Is the Fruit of Generosity, Not Scarcity. Money is a currency that must flow like electricity. Yes, cash is a current. It needs to circulate. Hoarding it stops the flow of it into your business and private life.”

“Give more to receive more. The four practices for making a financial fortune: positive expectancy, active faith, ever-increasing gratitude, and extreme value delivery.”

The Billionaire’s Maxim #7 

“Optimal Health Maximizes Your Power to Produce Magic. Peak health really is true wealth.”

The Billionaire’s Maxim #8 

“Continue Raising Your Life Standards Toward absolute world-class. You receive the pay raise you’ve wanted for years, and you’re overjoyed for a day. Then, this new income level becomes your new normal. The joy you felt fades.

Make each quarter better than the last, and each year better than the previous one.”

The Billionaire’s Maxim #9 

“Deep Love Yields Unconquerable Joy. Any chance you get, show people love. Tell people how proud you are of them and how much you love them while you, and they, are still alive.”

“Part of your job as a fully alive human is to make people feel better about themselves. And to make others smile. It may shock you how little it takes to make someone happy. Write old-school love letters to everyone you care about, thank-you notes to those who have helped you.”

The Billionaire’s Maxim #10 

“Heaven on Earth Is a State, Not a Place. Take daily voyages into awe and regular adventures into wonder. Wonder is such a potent source of happiness and a key skill in the promotion of your ever-increasing genius.”

The Billionaire’s Maxim #11 

“Understand that your days are numbered. And with the passage of each glorious  morning, you grow closer to your end. Don’t put off expressing your gifts and talents.  And make certain you enjoy this ride.”

“Don’t put off your happiness until you have more time, or you get the promotion, or you have more money in the bank.”

Beautiful quotes

“The main focus of a business is to serve. To be of service to society. The money, fame and prestige are by products of that.”

“Your daily habits determine your success more that the genes you got”

“If everything seems under control you’re not going fast enough.”

“Most people on the planet today don’t think much of themselves, unfortunately. They secure their identity by who they are externally. They evaluate their achievement by what they’ve collected versus by the character they’ve cultivated. They compare themselves to the orchestrated—and fake—highlight reels presented by the people they follow.”

“Giving to other people is a gift you give to yourself. Raise the joy of others and you’ll get even more joy.”

“The life of the caterpillar must end for the glory of the butterfly to shine. The old ‘you’ must die before the best ‘you’ can be born.”

“I heard a man say he needed to lose weight before he could start running. Imagine that. Lose the weight so he could initiate the running habit. That’s like a writer who waits for inspiration to begin the book, or the manager who waits for a promotion to lead the field, or a startup that waits for full funding before launching a status quo–disrupting product. The flow of life rewards positive action and punishes hesitation.”

“Inspiration gets fed by isolation, away from the ceaseless digital diversion and mindless over-communication that dominates the hours of the majority these days. And, know too that your natural genius presents itself when you’re most joyful. We get our ideas that change the world when we’re rested, relaxed, and filled with delight.”

“Geniuses understand that it’s smarter to create one masterwork than one thousand ordinary pieces.”

“The very things that make you amazing at your craft can devastate your home life.

You need to develop awareness around where they can lead you into trouble in your personal life and then manage those traps.”

“the planet becomes a poorer place without your greatness in it.”

“The single best way to build your willpower is to voluntarily put yourself into conditions of discomfort. Sleep on the floor once a week, take cold showers, fast twice a week or train in the cold. The real key is to push your brain to develop new neural pathways and to force your willpower muscles to flex and stretch, intentionally working these natural resources up to their highest level.”

Like what you see?

You can sign up to my newsletter, I send out monthly updates, I don't spam, and you can always unsubscribe.

Let's chat

I'm always happy to hear from your journies.