6 Smart Habits for Effective Morning Routines
Is it common practice for you to hit the snooze button on your alarm?
Maybe twice? Or even three times?
You’re not alone. For many, waking up is the worst part of the day. You just want to keep sleeping, but reality is banging loudly at your door.
Do mornings always have to be such a drag? Does it need to be so darn hard just to wake up?
No it doesn’t, and all it takes are a few good habits to get you going.
Your morning routine sucks
Let’s face it, if the first thing you do when you wake up is rush to clean up and leave for work, then your morning routine is bad.
And I’m betting that most of your days end up like that, don’t they?
You don’t think it’s worth waking earlier
Maybe you think it’s pointless to wake up earlier, and that you should maximize your sleep instead.
Well there’s no argument here that plenty of sleep is important. But here’s the thing, what you do in the morning sets the tone for the remainder of the day. So if your morning’s are a frenzied rush out the door, your day will match that panicked pace.
6 habits for a better morning
A good morning-routine is something that nearly every single successful person has, so there’s good reason to start implementing these habits right away.
The first one is the only necessity, but you can pick and choose the remaining ones based on your personal preferences.
1. Wake 1-2 minutes earlier
No morning habits will work if you don’t have the time to do them.
So start waking no more than 1-2 minutes daily until you have adequate time to:
1. Prepare for work at a comfortable pace
2. Add one of the following morning habits to your routine
Adding only 1-2 minutes each day will prevent you from backing out prematurely. Suddenly waking 30 minutes early probably won’t work out in the long run.
2. Exercise your body
Successful people everywhere know that if you don’t exercise in the morning, there’s a good chance you won’t do it at all.
So mornings are perfect for you if you can’t seem to get yourself to the gym after work. At least then you don’t need to face the internal battle of wanting to sit and relax at home or needing to go to the gym after work.
And don’t think you need to head to the gym to get a “real” workout, you can a get a solid one in less than 10 minutes without any equipment at all.
For instance, 5-10 minutes of:
1. Jumping jacks
3. Bodyweight squats
…can be effective for general health and wellbeing.
You can rotate between them for more variety if you want, what’s really important is that you do something each morning, just to get your blood going and even better if you build up a sweat.
Stretching, jogging, and yoga like exercises work as well.
3. Meditate peacefully
Are your mornings a frenetic rush out the door? Then this might be what you need.
Meditation is an exercise of the mind, specifically on your ability to focus. It’s not solely about clearing the mind, it’s more about training the mind to bring its attention back to the matter at hand, DESPITE any distractions. Over time, you get better and better and ignoring distractions and refocusing on what’s important.
How is this useful? Think about it, the ability to ignore ANY stimulus so you can focus on something important (like work for example).
So meditation has more applications than just prepping your mind for a relaxing morning, it can boost your concentration when you’re working as well.
Here are some quick tips to get you started:
1. Meditate for 1-5 minutes at first. That way it’s easier to start off and increases the chances you’ll stick with it in the long run.
2. Pick one thing to focus on. You don’t need to limit yourself to focusing on your breath, you can also focus on an image (both in your head or real life) or some kind of sound (e.g. music, a chant, or nature sounds) if you like.
3. Refocus the mind when it wanders. Everybody’s mind wanders, so it’s normal. The key is in how effective you are at refocusing your attention. So when you feel your mind drifting, acknowledge it and refocus on what you need to.
4. Do a hobby
Hobbies are something everybody should have as they are sources of satisfaction and fulfillment.
But hobbies can fall by the wayside over the years, which is a shame. Luckily, you can ensure the longevity of any hobby by waking a little bit earlier each day and spending some time working on your craft.
I’m sure you’ll realize how important a hobby is after reconnecting with it each and every morning.
5. Do anything you want
Look, your mornings are dedicated “you” time, and you don’t need to do something productive to make it work.
Do you want to wake up and play videogames? Then do it. Want to watch television or even a movie (if you have the time)? Then do it. If what you do each morning makes you look forward to waking up, then you’re on the right path.
And once you start to love your mornings, it’s natural for that feeling to be carried with you throughout the entire day.
Over to you
What’s your morning routine like? Fast and frenzied? Or slow and peaceful? Leave your answer below because I’d love to hear it 🙂