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Wellness

Five Ways to Improve Your Morning Routine

I recently found myself in a slump. The days started blending together and I struggled to keep myself motivated. I realized that part of the problem was a lack of structure in my day. With the start of the new year, and new semester, I tried to make small changes to my morning routine to start my day on a better note. I have definitely noticed how impactful incorporating these healthy habits can be on my productivity and mood.

Avoid Your Phone

A habit I’ve struggled with for the longest time is staying in bed after my alarm has gone off to scroll through social media right when I wake up. I would spend at least half an hour checking texts, Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter to get updated on what I had missed. I recently decided to break the cycle and address what is an unfortunate addiction to my phone. I have started restricting my phone use for the first hour or two of my morning to allow myself to have a peaceful start to my day before getting flooded with information. I found this to be a great mindfulness practice because instead of being consumed by social media, I am able to focus on my priorities for the day.

Eat a Healthy Breakfast

Breakfast is by far my favorite meal of the day. When I’m in a rush, however, I do get lazy with it and reach for an easy bowl of cereal or granola bar. But this often leaves me feeling sluggish throughout the day. I have found that taking the time to make a healthy meal gives me a good energy boost to make it through the morning. My personal favorite is avocado toast with berries in the side.

Plan Out Your Day

Planning out my day is an absolute essential part of my morning routine. Especially as a student, having a visual of what I need to get done really helps to lower my stress levels. Making a daily schedule or to-do list in the morning is a great way to guide me through a hectic schedule and keep me on top of my priorities.

Do a Relaxing Activity

Mornings can feel really overwhelming, but taking the time to do a relaxing activity can help get you in the right headspace. Reading, listening to music or a podcast, journaling, and mediation are good ways to find time for yourself before starting the day. If you’re looking to save time, I find it helpful to do one of these activities while eating breakfast.

Exercise

Even if it is something as simple as stretching, exercising is a great way to find your energy and refresh yourself in the morning. I definitely struggle to fit this in on a regular basis, but I have noticed improvements in my mood and energy levels when I do. Yoga and pilates are my go-to workouts for the morning because they help to wake me up without overexerting myself.

Iqra is a sophomore majoring in Psychology at the University of Illinois at Chicago. In her free time, she enjoys reading, watching her favorite shows on Netflix, and trying new coffee shops. Iqra also loves getting involved in creative projects!
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