I’ll be honest, my summer morning routine was close to non-existent. My typical a.m. consisted of waking up and reaching for my phone to check socials followed by eating breakfast (or what is probably considered lunch). Whatever time I woke up, I would mindlessly jump into my tasks because I never gave myself time to reflect on my upcoming day. Getting back into the groove of the school year, sticking to a schedule is necessary, and how you choose to start your day can impact your energy levels as well as your overall mood. I would love to share some ideas of healthy and mindful habits that you can incorporate into your mornings to improve your day ahead.
Stretch: Good morning, sleepy head! You have just been woken up by your alarm, but don’t let your feet touch the ground just yet. Take a minute to do some bed yoga and stretch out your body after sleeping eight hours in the fetal position. Wake up your muscles and allow your body to warm up to the day. Stretching relieves tension in your muscles and honestly just feels good. You can choose to get fancy and reach for your toes, but I like to go for the classic starfish pose. Stretching is effortlessly done by many already, but putting attention and your mind into your stretches will make them more meaningful.
Affirmations: Whatever this looks like for you, start your day with positivity through kind words to yourself. Morning affirmations can be things you tell yourself that you wish not only to embody, but to believe: “I am powerful,” “I am beautiful.” It can be a quote you aspire to live by or a cutesy Bible verse that lifts you up for the day. Third-person affirmations can be beneficial as well. Speaking to yourself in the third person convinces your brain faster that what is being said is true because we admire when others think positively of us (“y/n is confident,” “you can do it, y/n!”). So stick those morning affirmations on your bathroom mirror or somewhere you’ll see them every day and say them out loud, queen.
Power Pose: Power posing is a useful key to self-love and confidence. A power pose is any way you pose your body that appears big, bold and powerful. And don’t forget to add a smile! Pose powerfully in front of a mirror and stare at that confident baddy on the other side. I started power posing during my morning affirmations and I gained confidence and assurance in myself to use throughout my day.
Drink Water: You heard me! Before your morning coffee or tea, a cup of water to break your night fast is so energizing for your body. Spruce up your morning water with a refreshing additive; splash in some lemon, infuse with cucumber, even warm up a cup and add a teaspoon of honey. Who said drinking water had to be boring?
Plan Out Your Day: As a diehard planner enthusiast, this tip excites me. Going through your tasks that need to get done that day is a great way to wrap your mind around where your energy will be used. If you didn’t choose the planner life nor the planner life choose you, I encourage writing a list of various tasks you hope to complete before you hit the pillow that night (Bonus points if you schedule times to complete them and how long you predict they’ll take!). I also find with adding this activity to my morning routine, my daily tasks don’t overwhelm me as often.
Meditate: This tip is the hardest for me to stick to, even though it’s the most beneficial addition to my morning. Put down your phone for two to five minutes and use that time for yourself. You can take this time to collect your energy for the day from within or simply focus on your breathing. You can ask yourself questions about what your day will hold: “What are you most excited about today?”; “What are some things you can control?”; “How can I remain calm in situations I cannot control today?” There is no wrong answer, whatever will bear the most fruit for you to start your day confidently will work just fine.
Lay Out Your Clothes the Night Before: Okay, this isn’t necessarily a morning routine, but it does help your time management the next morning. It has happened to me far too many times, spending way too much time picking and re-picking my outfit for the day, which ends in rushing out the door. Laying out your clothes the night before also saves your brain power for other important matters that day.
Listen to Music: Music is one of the easiest ways to change the mood of a room. Make a playlist of songs that energize you or bring you peace to begin your day or choose from plenty of premade playlists on Spotify and Apple Music. Once you have your set, get ready while your speaker bumps those tunes.
And that’s it! Habits start small and it takes a few weeks to turn them into a part of your daily routine. Remember to not overwhelm yourself and choose a few that work best for you to incorporate into your morning and go get after your day!