Mornings don’t have to be hectic. For many people, waking up signals the start of a stressful morning – you’re tired, in a bad mood and don’t want to get up. Instead of being glued to your phone for 30 minutes browsing Facebook, here’s a morning routine guide you can follow to boost your productivity and relieve stress every day.
The importance of morning routines
Many people struggle with their mornings, which tends to set the tone for the day. Repetitive routines create a sense of normalcy and can keep you calm. A good start can go a long way towards a great day.
On the contrary, waking up on the wrong side of the bed can lead to stress, insufficient sleep, poor eating habits and ineffective time management.
A few simple tweaks to your morning can help you relax and improve your mental health. It will also leave you feeling energized to conquer the day. This energy will last throughout the day to provide a more structured sleep schedule, allowing you to recharge each night. Simple planning will also benefit your health. A morning routine with breakfast and some type of activity (yoga, stretching, or working out) can do wonders for your metabolism and your state of mind.
Morning routines can help you in your personal and professional life. Being in the right frame of mind can increase your productivity at work and your confidence in the office. At home, it can help you stay in a better frame of mind when interacting with loved ones – it’s easy to carry stress home with you.
Morning Routine Ideas
You don’t have to fit all of these ideas into your morning. After all, some people only have 15 minutes to spare while others may have an entire hour. Don’t worry about waking up at dawn to do more tasks than you can handle – not getting enough sleep can put unnecessary stress on your sympathetic nervous system and make you more sensitive to situations. If you’re feeling stressed about making enough time, plan ahead the night before and iron your clothes or pack your lunch so you have one less thing to do in the morning.
- Wake up without distractions. Information on your phone can be stressful. Whether it’s depressing news on your social media timeline or being inundated by your work inbox, it’s best not to use your phone until you’re up and getting started. your day. Reaching for your phone first thing in the morning is also an easy way to disrupt your routine. After all, it’s easy to go down a rabbit hole watching 30 minutes of Facebook videos. For those who use their phone as an alarm clock and are tempted to scroll their phone, consider using an old-fashioned alarm clock.
- Take a glass of water. It’s easy to think of water as a thirst quencher, but it actually serves a purpose. Water is a vital part of many daily functions – the human body is made up of 50-60% water, depending on gender. Start your day with a glass of water to hydrate your body and replenish fluids lost the night before.
- Set the tone by clearing your mind
- Statements. Positive affirmations are phrases that you repeat verbally or non-verbally to set the tone for the day. The expression comes from the Latin word to affirm, meaning to become robust or grow stronger. An example of an affirmation could be: “Today will be a good day. I will do my best in all my tasks.
- Deep breathing. Take a deep breath so that your belly begins to swell, and exhale through your nose. A quick five-minute breathing routine can help your central nervous system relax and remove any feelings of anxiety you may be feeling that day.
- Meditate. Stress can increase the production of cortisol, a hormone that activates your “fight or flight” response. Meditating for a few minutes each morning can help you focus on the day ahead and calm any anxiety you may have. Click this video for tips on how to use meditation to relax.
- Elongation. A simple morning stretch can also help get your blood flowing for the day and relax muscles that have tensed up while you sleep. Here are some easy stretches to add to your morning routine.
- Yoga. A five-minute yoga routine can help relieve stress, relax you, and even improve your sleep. Learn more about basic yoga poses to try at home.
- Start a journal. Writing your thoughts each morning in a journal is one way to practice gratitude and remind yourself of what you are grateful for and appreciate. It can be as simple as being grateful to your family or having clean water to drink. Writing will help spark your creativity for the day.
- Make your bed. Making your bed takes a few minutes, but the reality is that many people wake up and leave the house with their bed moving. Start your day with a sense of accomplishment for completing a task – albeit simple and easy – of tidying up your bed. Plus, it will make your bedtime routine much easier and more inviting as you climb into a freshly made bed.
- Plan your day. Write down a list of tasks you want to accomplish for the day. It can be as simple as five important tasks. Be specific and place the intention behind your words. Don’t just write a task without context. Instead, be sure to put a deadline for how long it should last and what time the task should start. For example, if you have a presentation due at work the next day, one of your tasks might be to spend two hours from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. to complete your project.
- Lily. Similar to journaling, reading every morning helps create a positive environment and inspires your brain to be creative for the rest of the day. The reading can be as simple as a poem or a religious scripture.
- Find motivation. Sometimes being afraid to get out of bed can be a sign of lack of motivation. Without a goal, there might not be much incentive to wake up for your morning routine. Finding a motivator will vary for each person, but examples include walking your dog or getting up to spend time with your kids before school.
- Eat a full meal. Breakfast can be an excuse for sugary cereals, crackers, and fatty processed meats like bacon or sausage. These guilty pleasures taste great, but they’re mostly full of empty calories or saturated fats that don’t offer many nutrients. Instead, eating a nutritious breakfast will provide you with energy to fuel you throughout the day. Consider eating whole grain toast, fruit, yogurt and a handful of seeds or nuts. When combined, these foods provide a balance of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins that your body needs to perform at a high level.
- Exercise. Exercise is more than just a weight loss tool – the brain also releases happy chemicals when you increase your activity levels. Dopamine, a neurotransmitter that helps you feel pleasure, is activated during exercise. Two other types of neurotransmitters called serotonin and endorphins are also released. These chemicals give you a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. It’s a misnomer that exercise should be a sweaty, high-intensity workout. A morning walk, yoga, or even a set of push-ups will get your heart pumping.
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