Why a Daily Morning Routine Matters + Tips on How to Get Ready Fast
Mornings can be tough, especially at the beginning of a long work week. You’ve probably often thought to yourself, “There has to be a better way!” Nothing is worse than jumping out of bed with barely any time to get ready, forcing yourself to get dressed in a hurry and rush out the door clutching your precious coffee.
Well, you’re not alone in thinking that this frantic rush isn’t the best way to start your day. In fact, having a morning routine you find comfortable can help you be more productive, more active, and generally happier throughout your waking hours.
In his book, The Miracle Morning, author Hal Elrod outlines a set of guidelines you can use to help get yourself in the habit of a regular morning routine:
1. Set Yourself Up Properly
One of the main problems people encounter in the morning is a simple lack of time to get ready. That’s because people often wake up with only an hour or less to prepare before they have to leave the house.
Perhaps the simplest and easiest thing you can do to ensure you have the foundations of a quality morning routine is simply to set your alarm clock a little earlier. Having a few more minutes (or even hours) to get yourself ready for the day ensures you won’t be hustling too much from the bed to the shower to the car.
To help make it easier for you to get started waking up earlier in the morning, a good strategy would be to go to bed an hour or even 30 minutes earlier than you’re used to. That way, you can still get the same amount of sleep to which you’re accustomed while still leaving yourself more time in the morning.
You can start this strategy in intervals. After you’ve mastered going to bed half an hour early, bump it to an hour, then two if you’re still feeling rushed in the mornings.
Beyond simply going to bed earlier and setting your alarm at a more advantageous time, there are some other ways you can set yourself up for success in the morning. One helpful trick is to leave your phone on the other side of the room, so when your alarm goes off in the morning, you have to physically get up and walk over to it, rather than simply rolling over to press the snooze button.
Another tip is to keep a glass of water by your bed, so you can hydrate yourself right when you wake up. You’d be surprised how dehydrated you can get during your sleep, so it’s important to keep water on hand for energy in the morning. It helps wake up your metabolism.
And finally, washing your face can be a great way to splash yourself awake if you’re feeling groggy.
2. Consider Meditation
Meditation is a rapidly growing practice that more and more people across the country are trying. It’s a great way to center yourself and clear your head for the day. Adding meditation to your morning routine can help you get into a relaxed state of mind.
Meditation only takes 15-20 minutes a day, and it’s been shown to help in a variety of different ways, from improving your mood to lowering your stress levels. It may seem strange at first as you learn to master the technique of sitting quietly with your thoughts. Once you’ve done it a few times, though, you might just find yourself looking forward to your daily meditation session.
3. Daily Affirmation
Another key part of Elrod’s outline for a better morning routine is something called “affirmation.” Affirmation is essentially self-encouragement, telling yourself positive thoughts and statements that can help motivate you throughout your day.
Often, we find ourselves waiting around for a mind to adjust itself, so it can compel us to do the right thing and act productively. But rather than waiting passively for your mind to change itself, you can actually take steps to condition your brain to be more productive.
Affirmation is a powerful way to accomplish this, and it’s very simple to start doing. Simply write down a few positive statements to read aloud to yourself every morning. These can range from goals you plan to complete that day, or long-term positive thoughts.
We’ve all been victims of self-doubt, which can keep us from doing all the things we want to do, but by adding positive daily affirmations to your morning routine, you can help keep that doubting voice at bay.
4. Make Your Health a Priority
Waking up is a lot easier when you take good care of your body. Everything from your diet to your drinking habits can affect how you sleep, and therefore how you wake up. If you maintain a healthy routine of good diet and exercise, you’ll notice it’s easier to get out of bed and get started on the day.
5. Keep Written Track of Your Goals
This goes right along with affirmation. Writing things down is a great way to keep them at the forefront of your mind. This will help you wake up with a sense of motivation, knowing what you need to accomplish that day.
The Natural Conclusion
If you follow these steps, it won’t be long before you’re waking up earlier and earlier every day. And with more time for yourself in the morning, the rest of the day won’t feel like such a rush. Having some time to get ready for the day before you have to start working can really make your work/life balance feel a whole lot better.
And once you’ve established your own routine, you’ll find yourself feeling more productive, more satisfied, and in a better mood overall. Maybe it’s true that the early bird gets the worm!