An energizing morning routine is the key to ensuring you truly seize each day. Rushing around during the first hour of your day will only stress you out as you try to prepare for the day ahead. By taking a little time for yourself to set an intention for your day and practice self-care, you will see progress as you work towards healthy habits this year. When building your morning routine, start small and commit to this life-changing habit. If you are ready to start improving your morning schedule, use these seven tips to build your customized morning ritual.
- Don't sleep in! Hitting the snooze button for an hour before actually getting up isn't doing you any favors. Rushing around in the morning because you didn't wake up early enough is the opposite of relaxing. Get enough sleep by comitting to a reasonable bed time. That new Netflix show can wait until tomorrow and you will feel way better if you allow for at least 7 hours of sleep. Plan to be up and at 'em for at least 1 hour or 90 minutes to allow for enough time. You may be tempted to use this time to be "productive" aka checking social media or email, but please don't! This morning time is for you.
- Jam out. Using a morning playlist and listening to the same songs every day can help you feel awake, happy and feel ready for the day. Studies have shown that the part of the brain that processes hearing also stores emotional memories. So, choose songs that you associate with fun or positive memories and your playlist will set a good tone for the day without you even realizing it.
- Move, but don't rush. Physical activity in the morning is a good idea, but don't feel like you need to go on a 10 mile run if that isn't your style. Simply stretching and moving your body intentionally will help. Try this short energizing yoga flow from yoga teacher Mary Beth LaRue. You don't need any special equipment and you can do it just about anywhere.
- Reflect. Often, the morning is the only chance you have during the day to clear your head. Things move rapidly and many different things and people will require your attention. Consider adding a mediation practice to your morning rituals. We like using Japa Meditation because it is simple to learn and helps to set you intention for the day. All you have to do is repeat a mantra word or phrase, like “calm” or “grateful” or “I feel joy" for a set period of time. Another similar method is Loving Kindness Meditation or "metta" meditation. This type of meditation improves your propensity for kindness which in turn helps you to be happier.
- Self care. Don't rush your time getting ready! brush your teeth, shower, dry your hair, and get dressed. Regardless of if you are going out or staying home for the day, don't skip this part of your routine and don't rush through this step! l more prepared to take on the day.
- Food! Of course eating breakfast is a part of any energizing morning routine. Many nutritionists say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and we agree! A good breakfast should include protein, fiber, and greens if possible. Recently we have been enjoying green smoothies for breakfast with protein powder. (Here are 5 of our favorite smoothie recipes.)
- Organize + GO! Okay, now is the time for productivity. We give you permission to check your email and make a game plan for the day. If you like double tasking, you can even do this while you eat breakfast. Try to check at least one tough task off your list first thing in the morning to start the day with a win. Make sure you have your water bottle, lunch, and snacks with you and you should be off to another great day!