I have never been an early morning person. But over the years I have put effort into forming better habits for my mornings. I no longer wanted to be that girl with a toast in her hand running for the bus. I no longer wanted to stay up until the wee hours of the night writing my papers. With my focus on getting my health better over all and sleep being a key component of that, I knew I had to work on my morning routine. After some reflection I really began to notice how my mornings would set the tone for the rest of the day. Keeping that in mind I started to make some changes.
Here are 5 things I did to have a better morning routine and in turn a better day!
1. Sleep earlier, get up earlier, don't feel rushed
I decided that I needed to have a set bed time. My body and mood heavily depended on this. I needed to make sure I was getting to bed around the same time everyday (yes even on the weekends -- I try!). This made getting up earlier easier and made me feel less groggy and tired in the mornings. It also meant that I was able to wake up at a reasonable time so I wasn't rushing. I would have to say, this, along with having a big breakfast, have been the two most important changes for me when it comes to my morning routine.
Rushing, grabbing my toast and running to the bus stop meant I was starting my mornings with loads of adrenaline being pumped through my body and high anxiety. I would sit on the bus trying to catch my breath and calm down. Now I leave for the bus or wherever I am headed at a reasonably early time usually listening to my favourite podcast and enjoying my surroundings. I am more calm and, therefore, in a better mood, honestly, this is a much better way to start my day.
2. Time for a big breakfast
A big breakfast is a must and a no compromise area for me. I usually have some sort of eggs in the morning which give me energy for the entire day. Your body needs that big healthy breakfast to utilize and produce energy for the rest of the day. I always try some variation of Eggs, kale, avocado, fresh juice, yams, omelette, oatmeal, yogurt or kefir, banana. The days I don't get to have a big healthy breakfast I notice a major change in energy level and it also leads to the likelihood of headaches and getting hungrier quicker, meaning bad mood and energy for the entire day.
3. Time to just sit, reflect, and read the newspaper
As I mentioned before I have been making an effort to reduced that rushed feeling in the mornings. In fact, I have been doing the opposite of being rushed: whilst I'm enjoying my breakfast I love to read the guardian newspaper on my Ipad. I have almost always read the newspaper from a very young age. It is a key component of just a little me time in the morning. Just me, my hot cup of Cha (Indian Tea) and doing something I just love: reading and learning about world events. It feels really good to have that little time of just sitting there where the morning feels slow and patient. I highly recommend just stopping for a few moments or minutes to just stop and reflect. We are always on the go and running around from one task to another. Thus it becomes vital to our mental health to have these moments of calm and reflection and I personally find it a great way to start the day.
4. A big glass of water
One of the first things I do once I'm in my kitchen is downing a big glass of water. Sometimes it is just plain water and sometimes it is water infused with cucumbers, lemons, ginger, mint and a teaspoon of turmeric. Any which way it is important to hydrate your body when you wake up. Regardless of the amount of water you drank the day before your body is dehydrated after a night's sleep, thus, you need to give those cells in your body some refreshment by hydrating. This in turns helps with your energy levels. Drinking a glass of water in the morning always helps with other various things: it flushes out toxins, helps with weight loss by increasing your metabolism, fuels up your brain, along with various other benefits.
5. Having my bag set the night before
I save time, energy, and prevent myself from being in high anxiety mode by packing my bag and laying out all I need at night. Thus, my mornings are more peaceful with less problem solving, figuring out things, or trying to remember where what is that I need to pack with me. This has also helped me become more efficient. Which all in turn has led to much calmer mornings.
What is your morning routine?