Morning routines are E S S E N T I A L to the success of your day. In a world where we can’t control traffic, how long we wait in line, or any of life’s inconveniences, we CAN control how we start our day! If you start your day on a positive and energized note, you’ll be able to carry that energy with you throughout the day.
Now let’s say you miss your alarm and thus have a rushed morning… That doesn’t mean the rest of your day has to be crappy. It’s all about perspective and bouncing back; and it’s easier to bounce back on the bad days when you have a solid routine developed.
If you start your morning by doing things that make you feel in alignment, it’ll be easier for you to deal with the inconveniences of life. Morning routines are essential because it is Y O U R time! It’s your time to do whatever you need to do so that you feel however you want to feel throughout your day. It’s your time to be intentional and to prepare yourself so that you can show up for everyone and everything else the way your best self would.
A lot of people struggle with morning routines because all of their days look different. Their schedule changes week-to-week, things come up, or their sleep schedule is off. And most people envision morning routines as a long checklist of to-do’s or boxes that need to be checked. But for the most effective morning routines, this is not the case.
Effective morning routines can be long, but they can also be short. No matter the length, what they have in common is I N T E N T I O N. The length of your morning routine and what it comprises depends on you as an individual and what you need.
To start developing your morning routine, first ask yourself, “How do I want to feel walking into my first commitment of the day?” Energized? Calm? Empowered?
Pick 3 adjectives for yourself!
Then ask yourself, “What could I do in the morning that would enable me to feel that way?”
You want to construct the to-do list of your morning routine based on what actions will elicit the feelings you want to generate for the first commitment of your day!
If you want to energize yourself, start with a glass of water with lemon and a workout.
If you want to decrease anxiety and feel calm, meditate or practice yoga.
If you want to feel prepared, journal and map out your day.
Looking to feel empowered? Try listening to a podcast or a feel-good playlist on your commute.
You’ll want to try a few different things to see what feels most in alignment for you.
I used to meditate before I worked out in the morning, but I found it put me right back to sleep. Now I meditate post-workout, shower, and breakfast, to set my intentions for the day. (However, I’ve had clients say that meditating post-workout brings down their energy; so this all varies person by person.) You have to find what’s best for you.
Then you can start working on your evening routine! It’s best to work backwards like this. What you do in the evening is also intentional. It should slow you down in preparation for a good night’s sleep.
Do you need to review your schedule for the next day? Lay out workout clothes? Prepare your lunch? What can you do that’s relaxing? Light a candle? Take a bath? Read a book?
I recommend your last meal be at least 2 hours before you plan to go to sleep, and that you stop using electronics and working 1 hour before bedtime. When my clients struggle with getting enough sleep and/or good quality sleep, it’s usually because they are eating too close to bedtime, using electronics, or doing work too soon before bed. Our bodies need time to wind down.
Overall, the best morning and evening routines start with YOU and how YOU want to feel throughout your day!