It is not difficult to find information on how to design your best morning routine. Just do a search on Pinterest and you will see for yourself.
The problem with following someone else’s best morning routine though is that we are all different.
What works for me won’t necessarily work for you.
I’ve tried a few step-by-step morning routines before, and instead of making me feel more productive, effective or healthy, I ended up feeling stressed out and overwhelmed. Quite the opposite of what having a good morning routine is all about!
Over the years, I have experimented with different routines and for more than a year now, I have been following the same morning routine which works very well for me.
I’ve decided to break it down for you into an explanation of things to consider when you want to create the best morning routine for yourself.
5 Steps to designing your best morning routine
- Wake up a bit earlier
- Get enough sleep
- Get your body and your mind awake
- Set your intentions for the day
- Clear the clutter
1. Wake up a bit earlier
I think most of us have experienced those mornings where you repeatedly hit the snooze button and you simply can’t get yourself out of bed.
When you finally do get up, you skip breakfast because you are late and you rush out the door, feeling frazzled.
By waking up earlier you ensure that you ease into your day.
Many people claim that waking up earlier makes you successful. I disagree. It all depends on what you do when you wake up early which will determine your effectiveness and ultimately your success.
When you go straight to your email or social media as soon as you wake up, your effectiveness will take a nose-dive.
Your day is now being directed by outside influences, rather than by you, which is not the best morning routine.
What you want to do instead, is to wake up earlier and then do intentional things which will help improve your life.
If you are new to getting up early, then you can start this habit by waking up a little earlier each day.
You will start by setting your alarm for 10 minutes earlier for 2 weeks or so. Once you are used to getting up 10 minutes earlier, set your alarm for another 10 minutes earlier and so on.
Carry on like this and within a few weeks, you will be up at least an hour earlier
And of course, if you want to wake up earlier, you will need to make sure that you get enough sleep so that you don’t become a sleep-deprived zombie.
2. Get enough sleep
To create the best morning routine that will work for you, you will need to get enough sleep.
Once again, we all have different requirements when it comes to sleep. Some people cope with 6 hours, while others need more. I’m at my best when I regularly get 8 hours.
Work backwards from when you want to wake up, to decide on your bedtime based on how many hours of sleep you need.
To ensure that you get the best night sleep possible, sleep with a window open as often as you can for fresh air.
When you have to sleep with a closed window, for example during the middle of winter, check that the room temperate is not too hot.
If you find that you to fall asleep, or you wake up often through the night, you should try reducing your screen time. Avoid going online or watching TV for at least an hour before bed.
Electronic devices emit a blue light which affects the release of a sleep-inducing hormone, called melatonin. This can cause you to have trouble falling asleep, or staying asleep.
3. Get your body and your mind awake
There are a few things you can do here as part of the best type of morning routine.
Mostly though, you want to focus on doing something that will refresh your body and mind after a night of sleeping.
Meditation is suggested by many as a great way to ease into the day. Lots of people swear by it, but if it doesn’t work for you, it’s okay!
I do yoga and mindful breathing every morning as part of my routine. When I miss a day, I notice it both in my body and my mood!
Whether you stretch, go for a walk or run or to the gym, movement wakes up your body.
Combine that with meditation, mindful breathing (as in yoga), repeating a mantra or even journaling to wake up your mind.
Journalling is helpful to get your thoughts out of your head and onto paper.
We often can think better about stuff when we stop mulling over it and writing it down instead.
4. Set your intention for the day
Take a few minutes each morning to set your intentions and goals for the day. This is an important part of the best type of morning routine.
When you want to simplify your life and live more purposefully it makes sense to set intentions at the start of your day.
You can also use this time to make a list of things you want to get done, or better yet, prepare the list the night before as part of your evening routine.
When you are intentional in creating your day, life stops “just happening” to you. Instead, you decide on what will receive your focus.
You direct your own pace of development and growth.
This way, when life does happen, you will be able to respond with purpose, rather than reacting to your circumstances.
5. Clear the clutter
Get into the habit of clearing the clutter around you every day.
A good place to start is to make your bed in the morning and picking up any clothes that are lying around.
Avoid clutter-creep by tidying as you go.
When something will take 2 minutes or less to do, then take care of it, instead of leaving it for later.
By clearing the clutter, making your bed and doing a quick sprint of tidying up, your home will feel like a haven to come back to after a day at work.
And if you work from home, there will be
If you have kids at home that make a mess during the day, at least this way you have a bit of a head start on keeping order (and maybe a bit of sanity)!
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The secret to creating the best morning routine for yourself
Here’s the thing: you can try and create as many morning routines as you wish, but if you don’t have a reason for it, you can bet it won’t stick.
This is a secret ingredient of building any new habit: Have a good enough (for you) reason to motivate you to continuously take action.
So, if you have played around with the idea of morning routines, and you want to create the best morning routine for yourself, start with identifying the reason.
Do you want to simplify your life?
Are you looking to practice more self-care and reduce your stress?
Do you want to get fit or lose weight?
Have valuable life-contemplation time?
Whatever the reason, write it down where you can see it, and begin creating the life you want!