Does this sound like your morning routine?
Your phone alarm goes off. You roll over in bed and sleepily hit the snooze button 4-6 times. You finally open your eyes (albeit begrudgingly so,) and start scrolling your social media feed. Before you know it, 25 minutes have gone by and you’re running late. You spring out of bed, take a 4 and ½ minute shower, throw some makeup on your face and run out the door with a travel mug of coffee in one hand and a granola bar in the other.
Not my idea of a peaceful start to my day…
And yet so many of us can relate to this sad little tale.
Your morning sets the tone for the rest of your day. When you don’t start it off in a way where you are in control, peaceful and grounded, you’re not setting yourself up for success. Try adding these practices to empower yourself and start your morning off right.
This is the very first thing I do every morning. (Well… the first thing I do after a little potty break.) Whether you are a seasoned meditator with an established solo practice or if you’re brand new to it and are only ready to try 5 minutes of intentional silence/stillness to set the tone for your day, you won’t regret taking the time to ground yourself and start the day off with peace and intention.
There are some great apps out to incorporate into your practice no matter where you’re at. Headspace is a great place to begin as the host Andy’s introductory series literally teaches you HOW to meditate as he guides you through the sessions. He’s got a big library of guided meditations of varying topics and lengths.
Calm is another app I really love. Not only do they have an extensive library of atmospheric sounds, music and guided meditations, they’ve got a “timed meditation” option where you can set a countdown timer and opt to have a single gong sound at the end of your session. There’s something much more peaceful about hearing a soothing sound like that ONCE to signal the ending of your session rather than having to break out of your meditative state abruptly to turn off the alarm on your phone timer. If you have a little more flexibility in terms of your schedule, you can opt to turn off the sound all together and finish your meditation gradually and naturally.
Plan Things The Night Before
You have two choices: you can start your morning calm and pre-planned, or you can rush around in total chaos like the scenario I described at the beginning of this post. To ensure a pleasant morning, plan a few things ahead of time. Before you go to bed in the evening, you can shower, set out and iron or steam your clothes, set out the products that you are going use, pack your essentials, and make sure your shoes have their match and are waiting by the door.
Wake Up A Little Earlier
If you find it hard to plan out your routine the night before, try waking up a few minutes earlier than the time you actually need to be up. You will reap a lot of benefits if you wake up just ten minutes earlier. You will have the time to actually wake your brain up so you can inspect your essentials with an alert mind and avoid mistakes. Start by waking up 10 minutes earlier each day, gradually working toward 30 minutes by the end of the month.
Wake Up Immediately
You snooze, you lose. Always wake up the instant you hear your alarm go off. Let’s be real, those 5 minutes of extra sleep aren’t doing you any real good anyway. And what is the guarantee that you will wake up after and extra five minutes and not an hour and a 1/2? (I know I’ve been a master of the “snooze and roll over” move in the past). A great hack to ensure you get up is to set your alarm across the room so you actually have to get out of bed to turn it off. You’re a lot more likely to stay up once you’ve already gotten up.
Make Your Bed
To make sure that you do not jump right back in, make your bed right after you get out of it. This will make you feel productive and give you a sense of accomplishment first thing that will energize you as you move into the rest of your day.
Stretch And Smile
Wake up with a stretch and a smile. Stretching wakes up your body and smiling releases endorphins that will make you feel more positive throughout your morning and the rest of your day. If you don’t try to shake that groggy and grumpy feeling first thing in the morning, chances are that you will be more passive aggressive throughout the rest of the day.
Brush Your Teeth Immediately
Some people believe in brushing their teeth after they are completely done with their morning routine, but it is actually better to brush your teeth first thing when you get into the bathroom. It will wake you up by getting rid of your morning breath and increase alertness by activating your senses.
Let The Natural Light In
Open up your blinds and push back your curtains. Let all that natural light in. It will make you feel happy and positive. You will be a lot slower in the morning if you skip this step. This little night to morning transition will go a long way toward powering you through your morning routine.
What are your favorite practices you’ve incorporated into your morning to get your day off to a great start? Lemme know in the comments below.