Some mornings I just don’t want to get out of bed. Everything is bad. Everything is wrong.
And sleeping in with my sweet kitty buddy seems like the best option.
Can you blame me for hitting snooze? He keeps my legs toasty.
I’m sure you’ve had some mornings like this because who doesn’t?
But mornings can be better. In fact, they can be one of the best parts of our days.
In a recent post, I shared a monthly routine for spiritual growth. Then I thought, hey, I should share my suggestions for making your daily morning routine awesome because why be awesome only once a month?
First, The Why
We’ve all had those days that start bad and just get worse, right? So I think we can safely assume that a bad start usually equals a bad day (although you can turn bad days around!).
When you have a good morning routine, it can set the tone for a positive & productive day.
Morning routines decrease stress because we start the day with a plan rather than chaos. We have time to collect our thoughts and get our brains on track instead of jumping into the day in a hurry and a sleep-frazzled mind.
They reduce anxiety. In my post about reducing fear, I explained how uncertainty increases fear and that the more we know about something, the less it worries us. Knowing how our mornings will go each day makes us happy.
Many of the world’s most successful people establish morning routines, and it only makes sense to learn from the best.
Now, The How
First, there is no right or wrong way. Experiment and find the routine that works best for you.
Mine consists of:
7:00 AM Waking up to a gentle alarm & brushing my teeth
7:05 Dedicating the day to God through prayer while I fill my HUGE water bottle
7:10 AM Reading the Bible followed by meditation
7: 20 Dance to “Shake If Off” by Taylor Swift – I’ll switch up songs whenever I feel like it.
7:25 AM Taking care of & loving on my cats
7:45 AM Make a health shake for breakfast
7:55 AM Drinking the shake while brainstorming about anything & everything
8:15 AM Ready to start the day strong!
There are some things you definitely want to make essential in your routine, such as having at least 15 minutes without screen time. You don’t want to immediately jump into the busy, busy, distraction world of social media, emails and the such.
Always give yourself something to look forward to. This helps us get our lazy bones out of bed and puts in a good mood. Set a good song as your alarm, hug and kiss your spouse, play with your pet, etc.
Drink water! Our bodies need replenishing after the night. Take it to the next level by drinking warm water with fresh lemon squeezed in it. The lemon starts your metabolism, cleans the mouth & throat and boosts energy. Wait about 30 minutes after your lemon water to brush your teeth, drink or eat.
Focus on how you want the day to go. Our minds are powerful. We should use them more. Visualize yourself finishing that report or having a great meeting with the boss. Pump yourself up for finishing your hardest project as soon as you get into the office. Think about how you will keep positive throughout the day. Remind yourself of (if you schedule ahead of time) or pick 3 goals for the day. This ensures you get your most important work done and aren’t wasting your days.
P.S. Willpower is highest early in the day so you really should tackle the hardest tasks or the one you’re dreading first.
Make It Even Better
Here are some “bonus” ideas for improving your morning routine:
Hitting the snooze button and drifting off for a few more minutes of bliss is a pretty wonderful feeling but not necessarily the best for you. If you know you want to snooze, consider setting your alarm a little later so you get more uninterrupted sleep, then don’t hit snooze when it goes off.
Track your sleep and find the best window for waking up (Resources on how to do this and more are included at the bottom of this post).
There is supposedly a best way to get out of bed: roll on your right side, push yourself into a sitting position and stand with a straight back. This should take pressure off your heart & back. If you’re sharing the bed, obviously only one person can roll on the right side and get up. If you get the left side of the bed, use the routine but roll to your left.
Move around to loosen up body and get blood flowing. Many people recommend working out in the morning to increase your focus and productivity for the rest of day as well as getting it done when willpower is highest. But there are cons. Our bodies just aren’t as good at working out in the morning as they are in the afternoon.
Use a smart thermostat to have your house gradually warm when it is time to wake up. Isn’t it terrible trying to get out of a warm bed on drafty mornings?
Try to increase the quality of your sleep so you wake up feeling better.
Ask yourself, “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” Steve Jobs asked himself this each morning and said, “Whenever the answer has been no for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.” Such an easy thing to do with the potential to make a huge difference in our lives! I’m adding this one to my routine.
I hope these suggestions as well as the resources below help you create an awesome morning routine! Do you have a good morning routine? Please share with us!
If you want to try meditation but don’t know where to start: Headspace app: https://www.headspace.com/how-it-works
A short workout that won’t take too much of your time: 7 minute workout: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/projects/workouts/
If you’d like to learn more about smart thermostat: Benefits of smart thermostats: http://lifehacker.com/what-can-a-smart-thermostat-do-that-mine-can-t-already-472975733
To improve your sleep quality: http://lifehacker.com/5971884/the-science-behind-sleep-and-how-getting-better-sleep-means-youll-need-less-every-night
If you want to learn from the morning routines of others: