What is the first thing you do in the morning? I’ll bet for many the answer will be check their phone: email, facebook, instagram, etc. Maybe before you even got out of bed.
Now think about this, and be honest with yourself: do you feel energized to tackle your day after that? Does it make you feel less stressed? Do you wake up looking forward to all a new day holds for you — or are you dreading what the day will bring you?
Start as you mean to go on
Everyone is busy; I get that. We all think we don’t have enough time to stop and smell the roses — or start our days with a little self care. What do you think you’ll regret most at the end of your life — not checking your email the minute you wake up or having a peaceful morning that sets you up for a great day?
I loved this quote I found in this post (here) on morning routines:
How you start your day is how you start your life.— Drew Canole
I believe it’s true. If you’re rushing around like a crazy person, feeling stressed, can’t remember what you meant to bring with you — how do you think the rest of your day is going to go?
What if you spent a little time on gratitude before you got up. Breakfast was ready for you to grab. Your workout clothes were laid out. You spent a few moments visualizing how you want your day to go. How do you think your day would actually go if you started it that way?
Yes, you, even YOU, have the time
Right about now I bet you’re thinking “but Judy, I just don’t have time to do all those things”. I know a lot of people hate this saying, but it’s the truth — we all have the same 24 hours in a day. It’s up to us how we use them.
What are you really telling yourself when you tell yourself you just don’t have the time? That you’re not worthy. You are not good enough. You are not important.
Maybe you have kids, and I understand, with kids, you have so little time for yourself. What do you think you’re teaching them by not taking care of yourself? How do they act in the morning? Get them involved. Try to set up a morning routine for them, too, so they start the day happy.
You set the tone. You have the power.
Spend a few minutes at night to set up your mornings
Let’s face it, I know you’re going to resist this. You’re too busy, you’re too tired, you just don’t have the time. How much time do you spend on your phone again? Is it really helping you relax?
Give up a little online time. Spend a few minutes on the weekends or the night before making yourself a breakfast you can just grab. Write down your to-do list (you’ll remember it better if you physically write it, but at the very least have one on your phone) so that you know exactly what you need to take with you the next day — and then get it ready so you don’t have to think about it.
GO TO BED EARLIER. Yes, I’m shouting at you! Go to bed earlier, and you will have the time to get up a little earlier. Consider actually physically shutting your phone off — if it’s not on, there’s no Facebook meme hole to fall down and keep you up all night.
Maybe I should have titled this “Change your evening, Change your life”, because taking a little time the night before frees up time for you in the morning.
What my morning routine looks like
Let go of your perfectionism here — this is supposed to make you feel better, not just one more thing to tick off your to-do list. Some mornings it just won’t happen, and that’s ok. It doesn’t make you a failure; it makes you human. Believe me, there are mornings it doesn’t happen for me.
My best mornings start with my routine, though, and this is what it looks like:
- Make a glass of warm lemon water with a little ACV (apple cider vinegar) in it to sip on
- Do a short — or longer, if I have more time — yoga session
- Guided meditation — generally about 5-8 minutes
- Reading from several spiritual books, roughly 5 minutes: Louise Hay’s Heart Thoughts and Inyanla Vanzant’s Every Day I Pray (Amazon Affiliate links) are favorites.
- Make/eat breakfast
- After breakfast, read a magazine while sipping my tea
That’s it. It doesn’t have to take a long time. And while Gizmo was still alive, the first things I did in the morning were scoop the litter boxes and feed him. Don’t start with all of this. Pick one thing that would make you smile in the morning, and start with that. Or pick something from the resources below. Small steps to a happier you.
A few minutes in the evening, a few minutes in the morning — give it a try. A real try. See if it makes a difference. Do the things that make you happy. Because you’re worth it.
What does your morning routine look like? How does it make you feel?
What do you do in the evening to make the next day go smoother?
More morning routine resources:
- My Morning Routine
- Morning Routines of the Most Successful People
- 34 Morning Routine Habits
- Build Your Own Morning Routine
- This 20 Minute Morning Routine Has Changed My Life