5 Things You Should Include in Your Morning Routine
Mornings used to be my favorite part of the day. Allow me to rephrase that, mornings NOW are one of my favorite parts of the day. I say used to be, because there was a time early in my 'business owner' days where mornings were no different than my afternoons or evenings. It's so easy as an entrepreneur to lose that distinction between YOUR time and BUSINESS time. Mornings should be used as a transition between rest and work.
Most peoples' mornings probably look like this: alarm goes off, reach for their smart phone, open their emails, scroll through Instagram.
I have news for you guys, you AREN'T going to be answer those emails when you still have sleepers in your eyes, and nothing that happened on your social media last while you were sleeping is THAT important. Where are YOU in that scenario??
So let's all set aside business for a minute, including your iPhone, and talk about building a morning routine that is just for you and your well-being. These are five things I include in my morning routine:
A Traditional Alarm Clock
It's hard enough to fight the temptation to peruse our phones first thing in the morning. Having an actual alarm clock helps quell that urge. Also, is there a way to just do-away with all snooze buttons?? I mean, let's be honest, that extra 15 minutes does absolutely nothing for us! (And bonus, even better than a traditional alarm clock is a natural sunrise alarm clock. Consider it a little indulgence to make easing into your day that much sweeter!)
Water & Gratitude
After an eight hour (well hopefully eight hours!) rest your body has been fasting throughout the night. Don't you want the first thing you put in it to be something good? Sure, coffee is great, but we shouldn't break our 'fast' with caffeine! I recommend room temperature water with lemon. It has an amazing alkalizing effect, warms up your digestion and energizes you in all the right ways! (Coffee comes soon I promise!)
And while you are sipping your lemon water, write down or think about what you are grateful for. We are already doing good by our body, why not do good by our mental well-being?
This is my favorite part of the morning. Many of us claim 'we don't have time to read' because our lives our just to busy! I call BS. We make time for the things that are important, and reading is absolutely one of those things. It improves your focus and concentration; reading strengthens your vocabulary; it sparks your imaginations; and it allows you the luxury of silence! If you absolutely insist reading is a recreational activity and you can't justify making time for it, allow me to reframe your perspective! Pick up a motivational book, or business book. BAM. No excuses. (If you need a good recommendation, I'm currently spending 30 minutes every morning reading Twyla Tharp's The Creative Habit.)
I mention this right after reading for a reason! Again for those of you who are concerned about wasting time, the effects of your meditation can be twofold if it follows your morning reading. Instead of me spouting off the why and the how, Leo Babuta of Zen Habits does a much better job, click here to read his article on mediation.
You would think I wouldn't need to mention this, but hey didn't we all dream of a life working for ourselves from home... in our pajamas... at one point? I'm not saying you can't have casual Friday in your sweats from time to time. But try to make a regular habit of looking 'presentable'. If you feel good about the way you look, you'll generally do better work. I'm not saying business professional! But at least something you'd feel good going out to meet a friend for lunch in.
And now it's time for your morning coffee!
This isn't an exact science, just a place to get you started! Try building a morning routine and sticking to it for 30 days to see how it changes your life, and your work. And if your pajamas make an occasional appearance at the office, I won't tell!
Curious, how does your current morning routine look?