How to Create an Effective Morning Routine

Posted by Chris Stewart on October 5, 2017 in Lifestyle Productivity Stress Management

How to Create an Effective Morning Routine

When you wake up in the morning, what’s the first thing you do? Check your Facebook newsfeed? Trudge your way to the coffeemaker? Hit the snooze button? How you begin your morning sets the tone for the day. With a healthy morning routine, you’ll likely be more productive, happier, and ready to take on whatever the day has in store.

When it comes to your morning routine, what are you doing wrong and what are you doing right?

Checking your phone before you get out of bed.

Scrolling through your Facebook newsfeed is probably the last thing you do before going to bed. Sadly, it’s probably the first thing you do when you wake up. In fact, a recent survey found that 46 percent of Americans admitted to checking their phones before getting out of bed. But checking your phone first thing in the morning can create a sense of FOMO, or the fear of missing out when you check your social media feeds and see what you’ve missed out on last night, in turn increasing anxiety.

Try: Trade your phone in for a bedside journal. Before you get out of bed, take a few short minutes to jot down three things you are grateful for. I love using the Five Minute Gratitude Journal; it’s a quick way to start the day off on a positive note.

Making a cup (or two) of coffee.

Dr. Jesse Chappus states that coffee had been known to stimulate the adrenal glands. What this means is that each time you consume a cup of coffee, your body reacts by initiating a fight-or-flight response. Instead of releasing that adrenaline, your body stores it in the adrenal glands, which can lead to burnout and adrenal fatigue. It also increases cortisol levels, which has been linked to weight gain.

Try: Drinking a glass of water. While we all know that drinking plenty of the water during the day is important, having a glass of water first thing in the morning has many health benefits. Craving something warm? Steep a cup of tea. If you just can’t give up the java, be sure to minimize your consumption.

Hitting the snooze button.

“Just ten more minutes.” Does this sound familiar? Tons of people hit the snooze button every morning. In fact, over half the American population do so on a regular basis. If you hit the snooze button, you’re disrupting your natural circadian rhythm and will be likely to wake up groggier than you would have been if you simply got out of bed at the first alarm.

Try: Beginning your day with a good stretch. This can be a short yoga practice, a jog, or even just reaching for your toes. Even the briefest stretch will give your body the nurturing it needs after several hours spent sedentary.

Skipping breakfast.

Like many, I’m guilty of this! Growing up, the first thing I did when I woke up was head to the kitchen to pour myself a nice big bowl of cereal. Unfortunately, this healthy habit is long gone. We always hear that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but how many of us actually live this? Studies show that eating breakfast first thing in the morning helps improve your focus and energy levels. It also will keep you full and lowers your risk of heart disease and diabetes. Just be sure to steer clear of too many carbs in the morning or you’ll run the risk of burning out before lunch.

Try: Grabbing a piece of fruit and some yogurt on your way out the door. If you have more time, add in some eggs and toast. You don’t need to cook up anything extravagant. Having a simple apple is a great first step. In fact, apples are a great alternative to coffee and will increase your energy levels! While coffee may give you a stimulating energy, apples will provide you with a longer, sustained source of energy.

It’s important to create an effective morning routine that will be sure to kick your day off right. Set aside one hour to to take some positive actions in your life. Starting your morning off with a few healthy habits will determine how you feel the rest of the day. It’ll make you more productive and more likely to crush your goals.

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