I used to be the most anxious, scattered person in the morning, and it wasn't because I dreaded waking up. I simply didn't know what to do with my excitement for the day ahead, or how to organize my day to ensure a productive, meaningful one. My mornings used to consist of an abrupt alarm clock wakeup, a rushed shower and getting dressed (this would typically result in clothes being flung left and right, only to come home to a mess), a quick breakfast where I could hardly appreciate what I was eating, and a "YES!! I will only be 5 minutes late" out the door. That all changed one evening when I attended a local Women's Group in San Diego. We all went around the room and introduced ourselves. We then were encouraged to share something that was troubling or exciting us. I expressed how disorganized and stressed I was, and one woman looked at me and asked, "Do you have a morning routine?" I told her, "Well sometimes, but I’m pretty inconsistent with it.” Needless to say, I adopted a morning routine and DANG. This lady knew what she was talking about! Keep reading to learn about my current routine that has changed my life and my top 5 secrets for creating a routine that you LOVE.
First, a Glimpse at My Morning Routine (Video Coming Soon!)
My morning routine changed my life, and brought balance in a way I never experienced before. It's quite simple, really.
I wake up early around 5:30 - 6 AM. I aim not to be woken up by an alarm clock and instead have trained my body by going to bed early. Once I am awake, I immediately greet the day with gratitude. I am here for another day, I say to myself. Today will be an amazing and productive day, I positively affirm to myself. I head to the bathroom to wash my face and brush my teeth. I learned recently that there are toxins that build up in your mouth and on your tongue when sleeping, thus-- you should never drink water before brushing your teeth in the morning. Once my teeth are brushed, I head to the kitchen to fill my water bottle up with water. Not always do I do this, but some mornings I like to add fresh lemon juice.
After I drink my water, I head to the blender where I throw in all sorts of goodness. I have really been enjoying Sunwarrior Protein powder, and I will add my own greens, hemp seeds and Omega 3, 6 & 9 oils. I let that smoothie digest for about 10 minutes as I stretch in my bedroom on my yoga mat. Once I feel ready, I bring my yoga mat outside and exercise. I like to switch things up day-to-day, but recently my routine has been a 10 minute workout video off of YouTube and then I will do muscle work such as squats and sit-ups. Overall, my stretching and exercise routine takes 30 - 45 minutes out of my morning. I find when I exercise in the morning I am significantly more productive and energized throughout the day.
After I exercise, I come inside the home and take around 10 minutes to meditate. This connects my mind, body and soul. Sometimes I focus on a future goal. Sometimes I focus on a family member who is not well. Sometimes I focus on nothing. Where focus goes, energy flows. Use your time how you wish.
Once I am done meditating, I take my journal and write down the major tasks I have to do that day. I used to do the little tasks first, but the little tasks are typically the easiest, and in the morning I am most productive; therefore, I have now taken on the hardest tasks first to get them out of the way, leaving the lighter often times more fun tasks for the end of the day where my energy and concentration levels are lower.
Now, My Top 5 Secrets for Creating Your Own Morning Routine
- Wake up earlier. When you wake up earlier, you have more time to do the things that are important to you. Whether nourishing your body, taking a yoga class, or journaling for an hour, waking up earlier will set the stage for you time which will allow you to feel fueled up for the day ahead.
- Nourish your body. Water and a light breakfast are what I recommend. If you are exercising, you will definitely need something for your body to work off of. I suggest a smoothie or high-protein oatmeal with blueberries. Experiment with different breakfasts to find the breakfast that you like best.
- Movement & stretching. I like to think of movement and stretching as the magical ingredients for a more productive day. Notice how I say 'more' productive. For sure, you can have a productive day with skipping this step, but I believe it is crucial to get your blood flowing, heart beating and sweat pumping to reach new levels of awesome in your personal and professional life. Stillness can cause fatigue or cause a buildup of anxiety and emotions. Get all of those emotions moving every morning with moving around, and see how you feel for the rest of the day.
- Meditation. Meditation is one of those things I never thought I would adopt on a daily basis. I always enjoyed it, but didn't realized how much it actually improved my wellbeing until I committed to an entire week of mediating in the morning for 10 minutes. Try a guided video online if you are first starting out. Once you get the hang of it, set a timer and do it on your own. You can focus on something or you can focus on nothing. Meditating is a process of flowing energy through your body and moving things through your spirit to allow for a healthier body and mind.
- Plan your day. Lastly, make a list of the things you need to get done in the day. Rank each item on a scale of 1 - 5 in terms of importance. I like to do the most important things first because I often work on tight deadlines and my biggest wish everyday is to stay true to my word, whether my word to someone else or to myself.
So, how you structure your morning is entirely up to you. Everyone is different so what may work for me may not work for you. Reading this blog post among others on the internet is a great place to get inspired and begin the process of creating your very own routine that you LOVE!
Let’s close with a recap of my daily morning routine checklist:
- 2 minute: Brush teeth to remove toxins from your tongue, then drink a big glass of water. Add lemon if you wish, and best to have room temperature water as opposed to cold water so it is less of a shock on your body.
- 2 minutes: morning high-protein smoothie.
- 15 - 30 minutes: Do some light stretching as your food settles, then take on some exercises that make you sweat. You can find great workout videos on YouTube!
- 10 minutes: Meditate. Even if you can only afford 5 minutes for this part, trust me-- you need it! We all need moments of silence. With silence comes clarity and with clarity comes growth.
- 5 minutes: Journaling and scheduling of your workday. You may also fancy scheduling your workday before you go to bed. Care to know my evening routine before bed? Leave a comment on this blog post if you'd like to see that on the blog!
Here's to a more productive & fulfilling day. You deserve it!