Are mornings a difficult time of day for you? Do you find it difficult to shake off the morning lethargy and get ready for the day?
If this is you, you're not the only one! After all, it's a fairly common complaint — after all, there are numerous social media posts and memes about the struggles of waking up early and getting motivated. For night owls especially, mornings can be rough.
But with a good morning routine, you'll be able to shake off your woes and get the day started on the right foot!
The benefits of a morning routine
It can be difficult to create and follow an effective morning routine, and it may be especially difficult when you're just getting started. But once you've gotten used to it, you'll be surprised at the difference it can make.
Still not convinced? Here are some benefits to following a morning routine.
1) Puts you in a good mood for the day
How you start your morning influences how you feel for the rest of your day. I'm sure you've experienced the effects of a bad morning — you oversleep, wake up in panic, get ready in a frenzied rush, and you end up spending the rest of the day in a cranky mood.
And that's why the importance of a good morning simply cannot be overstated! An effective morning routine will be able to put you in a good morning
2) Increase productivity
Don't you feel accomplished and relieved every time you strike a task off your to-do list? You'll be able to enjoy that high when you're able to follow through with your morning routine! And once you get the ball rolling, the momentum will motivate you to stay productive and tackle your tasks for the day.
3) Boost your energy levels
A big reason why we feel so lethargic in the mornings is because of how we wake up. Constantly hitting snooze, laying in bed scrolling through social media… these are all activities to hold us back from immediately jumping out of bed and starting the day.
With a morning ritual, you're forced to get rid of all those bad habits, and adopt better ones that will make you more energized for the day ahead.
Morning rituals you should adopt
With that said, here are some morning rituals that you should consider adding to your routine.
1) Drink a glass of water right after you wake up
Sounds simple, but there are many benefits to doing it. After a 6 to 8 hour sleep, your body will be dehydrated, and so drinking a glass or two of water will help to rehydrate yourself. And since lethargy can be caused by dehydration, drinking water will also give you a boost of alertness.
2) Do a quick workout
This is certainly a ritual that many people roll their eyes at. "It's already a struggle to wake up in the morning, much less work out," you may protest.
The thing is, you don't have to do strenuous exercise at all! So, no, there's no need to put on a Chloe Ting workout video first thing in the morning, especially if you're just starting out.
Instead, why not just search for some morning warm-up or stretching videos on Youtube to follow along? Some light lunges, stretching and even a walk around the block (if you have the time) can all do wonders for your energy levels and give you an endorphin boost.
3. Stay away from your phone until you get a task done
Many of us fall into the temptation of scrolling through Twitter or Reddit after waking up, but before we know it, 30 minutes have passed and we've yet to do more than lie in bed on our phones. Whoops.
It's time to kick that bad habit! Aside from shutting off your alarm (no snoozing it!), put your phone away until you've gotten a task done. It could be any task you want — brushing your teeth, going for a morning jog, eating breakfast — but you have to make sure that you stay away from your phone until you've completed that task. You'll be surprised to find how productive you become once your phone is out of the way!
4. Wake up at a consistent time
Yes, we know that weekends are the best time to sleep in. But what if we told you that morning routines shouldn't only take place during the weekdays?
It may sound horrible, having to wake up early on weekends as well, but it's all about getting over that initial hurdle. Once you consistently wake up at the same time, you'll find that it becomes easier for you to wake up on time as your body clock adjusts. You may even reach a point where you no longer need an alarm clock to get you up!
5. Make yourself a cup of green tea
Fellow tea-lovers, consider making yourself a cup of hot green tea in the mornings. Green tea contains both caffeine and L-theanine, which can both boost alertness and attention, making it a great tea to have in the mornings.
Coffee-lovers, consider gradually replacing your morning cup of joe with green tea as well. Green tea has many health benefits over coffee — such as improved oral health and more antioxidants — and is a much better option than simply going cold-turkey.
6. Change up your breakfast
As convenient as it is to swing by Starbucks and grab a pastry, it's much healthier (and cheaper!) to simply make your own breakfast with ingredients that can boost energy. Wholegrain cereals and bread, Greek yoghurt, eggs and oatmeal are all great breakfast options that you can mix and match with.
Finally, consider topping breakfast off with a serving of fruit. This is a great way to get a nutritious yet delicious breakfast to start your day off with.
7. Don't multi-task while eating breakfast
It may be tempting to put on a YouTube video or the daily news as you have breakfast, but turning off the screens will help you practice mindful eating. Often times we simply scarf down our breakfast without truly tasting or appreciating the food, and with mindful eating, this will change.
Let yourself properly enjoy your meal! This is, after all, your first meal of the day. As you eat, let yourself appreciate how the food looks, tastes and smells. This forces you to slow down and get in focus for the rest of the morning.
8. Write down your goals
"What do I want to achieve today" is a good question to ask yourself in the morning. Maybe you have a mountain of tasks at work that you want to get done. Or maybe you want to cook a hearty meal for your children this morning. Whatever it is, mapping out your tasks for the day gives you a head start and even motivates you to get started.
And don't just think about these goals — write them down! This not only holds yourself accountable, but you'll also be able to enjoy the sense of accomplishment when you finally get to tick off a completed goal.
As you go about the day, your goals may change, and that's ok! That is why you should consider writing your goals down on a digital journal app like Journey. With Journey, you'll be able to access your entries across your various devices, making it available to you anytime, anywhere.
It's time to seize the day with a good morning routine!