Do you have a morning routine?
Do you intentionally set yourself up for a good day?
Or do you drift (or rush) through your morning, reacting to whatever is thrown your way?
To me, routines are an important part of living an intentional life.
When you create a routine you are prioritizing what’s important to you. You’re choosing what to do and when.
You’re not drifting aimlessly, or rushing from one demand to another.
When you follow a morning routine you steer the course of your morning – starting the day with a positive mindset and a sense of calm and wellbeing.
A morning routine will enhance your self-care
A morning routine helps you start the day proactively – ensuring you get the self-care you need for both your physical and mental wellbeing.
Whether it’s exercise, organization, or just quiet time, a morning routine helps you start the day on the right foot – focused, energized and positive.
Want to lift your mood and feel more accomplished in the morning?
Here are 5 simple things to include in your morning routine
Of course, there’s no need to limit your morning routine to just these 5 things. A morning routine is most effective when you’ve personalized it to suit you.
And I’m not going to suggest that these things have to be done in a particular order, or for a prescribed amount of time.
And I’m certainly not going to suggest you need to get up at 5 am to do them (unless you want to of course!)
Do these 5 things in the morning though, and you’ll be off to a great start!
1. Make your bed
Sure it can sometimes feel like an effort to make your bed, but the rewards are definitely worth it.
When you make your bed every day you’re building what’s considered a “keystone habit” that creates a ripple effect – setting you up to make positive choices throughout your day.
Keystone habits start a process that, over time, transforms everything.– Charles Duhigg, The Power of Habit
Your bedroom will look instantly tidier, calmer and more organized. You’ll get an instant boost, and it will lift your mood when you return in the evening to sleep. It’ll also help you sleep better at night.
So make your bed for a quick win. You’ll start the day already feeling accomplished.
2. Savour a cup of tea or coffee (or another favourite warm drink)
Sitting with a cup of your favourite warm drink allows you to be still, and that moment of stillness at the beginning of the day generates a feeling of calm and peace.
Perhaps you can use this calm moment to focus on your breath, practise mindfulness or think about one thing you are grateful for today?
Maybe you just watch the view from your window. Or listen to some favourite music.
Try to resist checking the news or social media during this quiet time. Enjoy this moment without letting the outside world in just yet. You can check your social feeds later – they’ll still be there.
I love my first sip of tea in the morning. And it always tastes so much better when I can focus all of my attention on it.
3. Get dressed
However tempting it is to stay in your pyjamas all day, it won’t do anything to lift your mood or help you feel energized.
Getting dressed will help cultivate a positive mindset. It signals the beginning of a new day, with all the possibilities a new day brings.
Even if you don’t have anywhere particular to go, getting dressed for the day is still important.
When you get dressed you signal to yourself that you are important and worth taking care of.
There’s no reason why you can’t wear something comfy, just be sure to get changed out of those pyjamas!
4. Write down one thing you want to achieve today
What’s your priority or goal for the day? What’s one thing to want to achieve?
Whether you write it in your planner, bullet journal, on a notepad or a post-it, just the act of writing it down will help you prioritize and focus on achieving it.
Of course, you may want to write down more than just one thing. But if you do write more than one, highlight your priority. By definition, there can only be one number one priority!
No matter what else happens in your day, if you get just that one thing done, you’ll feel accomplished.
While you are thinking about your day ahead you may find it helpful to outline a schedule for your day too.
A schedule will ensure that you are not being over-ambitious and trying to squeeze too much into the time you have available to you.
5. Move your body
Of all the things you include in your morning routine, this is the one that will have the biggest impact.
We all know the importance of exercise for maintaining good physical health – how regular exercise keeps us fit, flexible and strong, boosts our immunity and helps us sleep.
Exercise is also one of the best things we can do for our mental wellbeing.
The endorphins released by your brain when you exercise are natural mood boosters.
Exercise will reduce the effects of stress on your body, as well as lift your spirits and help you feel positive, energized and productive.
What a great way to start the day!
So there you have it, 5 things to include in your morning routine. They may seem like small things but together they’ll have a big impact on your day.
When you live intentionally you use your time to prioritize the important things in your life.
Create a morning routine to ensure that these important things – those things that make you feel good and contribute to your wellbeing, get done.
You and your time are precious, so make your time work for you!