How to Create Your Own YouTube-Worthy Morning Routine

Every season, lifestyle Youtuber’s upload their new morning and nighttime routines, inspiring many to be as simplistic and mindful as they are in the mornings. I am one of those many. For every new uploaded routine, I try and copy their ideas by applying their routines to my mornings, and somehow still end up finally dragging myself out of bed at 10:34am, despite my best efforts (i.e. twelve alarms set two minutes apart).

Failed attempt after failed attempt got me thinking: how does one achieve such a structured and relaxing morning routine without falling out of love with it three days later? I realized that the reason I don’t stick to your average YouTuber’s morning routine, is because it’s not my morning routine. It is someone else’s that clearly works for them… or is something that has been exaggerated (is no one going to question how these people really get all this work done before 9am?). After some extensive trial and error, I have finally found a way to achieve a YouTube worthy morning routine that I can stick to – and that doesn’t necessarily need to be altered for the changing seasons. Here are my steps to creating a structured routine that’s all yours, and one you’ll (hopefully) stick to, with some additional ideas in between. Keep in mind that you don’t have to stuff all or any of these ideas into your morning routine because it is YOUR routine, pick and choose what you want to accomplish, and get it done!

Figure out why you want this, what you want to accomplish, and what you enjoy

First thing’s first: ask yourself what attracts you to these routines. Is it the seeming simplicity of their mornings? Or that you’d like to take your time instead of grabbing an apple on your way out the door? Maybe you’d just like time to enjoy hobbies that you don’t get the time to enjoy anymore? Or that you want to be more mindful? Once you’ve figured that out, it’s time to think about what you enjoy and what you want to accomplish. Grab your journal or a scrap piece of paper and make a list of everything that appeals to you or everything that interests you when you watch routines online. This will be the base of your perfect morning routine.

Calculate, schedule, and use half-hour increments

Now that you have an idea of what you’d like your morning to look like, you need to decide how much time it’s going to take you to accomplish it all.  Be realistic and understand that it won’t all get done every morning (though one can always hope). What time do you need to leave the house in the morning? How long would you like your routine to last? What time do you need to wake in the morning to accomplish your goals? Now, when it comes to waking up earlier (which is a common goal when it comes to these routines) start with half-hour increments. You’re not going to stick to your routine if, right off the bat, you start waking up at 5am every morning when you’re used to rising at 10am. If you usually wake around 8:30, the next morning try 8, and then reduce the time by a half-hour throughout the week until you reach your ideal wake-up time. Your body will thank you for easing yourself into to, so you aren’t crashing later in the week. Another great way is to understand your body’s wake-sleep schedule, this way you know you’re not waking up during your REM (rapid eye movement) sleep cycle and causing extra grogginess.

Try starting off your morning by being mindful

Mornings are great because they’re quiet. You can use this time to journal if that’s something you’re into or something you’re looking to try. Bullet journaling is a fun way to stay organized, and brain dumping is always relieving. Maybe write a page of gratitude or make a to-do list. If writing’s not your style, maybe meditation is. Wake yourself up with guided meditation or even some light breathing exercises. Channel the positive vibes and start your day on the right foot.

Set yourself up for your day, plan and organize

Set yourself up for your day by making your bed so you don’t crawl back in it, and if you feel lazy just remind yourself that you’ll appreciate it when you come home from a long day of living your life. Now, try to spend the next 10 minutes cleaning up. Are there dishes that can be cleaned and put away? Clothes littering the floor? An untidy work/study area? Take some time to clear these areas, it will help clear your mind. Finally, for this portion of your morning, take a seat, grab a planner and plan your day. Go over your schedule, your classes, due dates, appointments, make a list of things you need to do or pick up today. Once it’s all down on paper, or stored on your phone if that’s your thing, there will be less worries and you can finally enjoy your morning knowing that the rest of your day is already lined up for you.

Enjoy your hobbies

Our lives are busy. They’re full of work responsibilities, school work that’s piled so high it makes Mount Everest look like a hill, time with friends and family, and a decent night’s sleep. This leaves very little time to enjoy the little things. Are you a bookworm? Great, find time to add reading a chapter or two from your “to be read” pile to your routine. Not a fan of physical books? Try an audiobook or an inspirational podcast. Are you an active person? Take this time to exercise. Go for a morning run, get a gym membership, get moving. Exercise itself has been shown to boost endorphins, which are our body’s natural hormones that help us feel happy and awake (also known as a runner’s high) so it’s definitely not a bad idea to add a workout to your morning routine.

Have a hearty breakfast

Give yourself time to have a decent breakfast. Breakfast is so important in the sense that it helps kickstart your metabolism and fuels the start of your day. I don’t know if you’ve heard, but breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so make it a good one! Throw in some protein, cut up some fresh fruit, make pancakes if that’s your thing. A granola bar or a piece of fruit in the morning isn’t going to cut it. Remember that to-do list/schedule you made a couple points back? Eat a breakfast that’ll help you get through that entire list and them some. Treat your body well with a decent and filling breakfast.

Get ready, get set, take the day by storm

Here’s the final part of your morning routine where you need to start prepping yourself for your work/school/plans. Take a shower, and enjoy it, none of this quick-rinse-wet-hair-in-a-bun nonsense. Take your shower, shampoo a mohawk, and dry your hair. If you’re into makeup, do your makeup. Apply all your favourite products and don’t settle for your quick the “oh shit I’m late makeup look” which involves maybe a touch of mascara and some concealer (unless that’s your thing, if so, work it!). Pick an outfit that’ll make it clear you’re a girl boss and that you own this day. Get organized and get out the door. Enter your day with confidence, having already accomplished more than most people have between the hour you woke and the hour you leave!