Start Your Mornings Right

Get a productive morning routine down — set the tone for your day.

Your mornings can either be your best friend, or your worst enemy. Even if you’re not a morning person, your mornings can still be productive and help set a positive tone for your day.

My mornings have started to become my favorite part of the day. Everything is fresh. Everyday the sun comes up is a new chance to do and be something great.

To like your mornings though, you have to create a routine you like and can stay consistent at. Here’s my routine; steal it and make it your own to start your mornings right:

Drink Water as Soon as You’re Up

I don’t do anything else until I drink 5-10 big gulps of water.

And hey, I get it — it’s a weird sensation to introduce to your body right after you wake up — but it gets easier the longer you do it. And it wakes me up and gets my body running again. That’s important after 8-10 hours of being stagnant.

It helps get my brain working again, and I notice a difference in my body throughout the day. I’m less bloated, I’m able to eat more, and it kind of helps catapult me into getting my water intake for the day.

So make sure you have a glass of water or a full water bottle easily accessible to you and ready to go in the mornings. Make it the first thing you do.

Journal & Set Your Affirmation for the Day

I wrote a post on this (My Morning Journal Routine) so if you need a routine for journaling, check that out.

But I don’t let my feet hit the floor until I’ve journaled and come up with an intention or affirmation for the day.

Journaling helps set the tone for your day too; it gives you the space to brain-dump your thoughts and get through your day with more clarity, and less stress.

Choosing an affirmation or intention for your day gives you the space to grow and be conscious about how you’re treating yourself.

These are overall, positive practices to start your mornings off with. I highly recommend.

Practice 3-5 Yoga Heart-Openers

Yoga is such a great practice that connects your mind to your body. Even a few minutes of it everyday can be incredibly grounding.

Heart-opener poses allow me to be present within my mind and body before I start my day. They help me stay grounded in myself before I get bombarded with the constant distractions of the world — especially social media.

Heart openers will tend to align and open your heart chakra which is associated with deep feeling, compassion, and connection to yourself and all other living beings. So I’d say it’s a good practice to add into your morning routine.

Start with 30 – 60 seconds of downward dog. Peddle your feet out and stretch your calves as far as you can. Deep breaths in, deep breaths out.

Then go into 30 – 60 seconds of cat-cows. Deep breath in when you lift your head and drop your belly to create a dip in your back. Then let that breath go as you drop your head and arch your back.

Next, use 30 – 60 seconds to go into cobra. Lay on your stomach, but prop yourself up on your palms. Your arms should be straight at your sides. Deep breaths here too. I like to repeat my intention or affirmation for the day here.

Finally, use 30 – 60 seconds to go into child’s pose. Stretch back onto your knees (your belly should be near your knees), and lay your hands out in front of you. Deep breaths here as well.

You can also start your mornings with a few rounds of sun-salutations. Here’s a diagram you can follow. This is one of my favorite practices. It releases a lot of body tension, is a great stress-releaser, allows you to use your entire body for a few minutes, and improves your body’s range of motion. All great benefits, here!

Start your mornings with 5 minutes of yoga; it’s such a good practice to incorporate. I promise you’ll notice a difference in your attitude and productivity throughout your day.

Get Sunlight/Natural Light ASAP

I open my blinds as soon as I’m up. Getting natural light in the mornings also has its own benefits. Sunlight has been proven to fight against insomnia, PMS, and even seasonal depression. You can get great boosts of serotonin from morning sunlight as well.

It’s no secret that our bodies thrive in natural light. We’re biologically wired to function with the sun. And its rays provide Vitamin D, which is a crucial component to fighting fatigue and positively boosting your mental health.

The sun in the morning also boosts our immunities and metabolism, helps develop healthy bones, prevents aging, and produces melanin which in turn, produces melatonin. If we don’t get enough sunlight, not enough melanin gets made — which means healthy amounts of sleep come to a halt and the body ends up constantly depressed, anxious, and depleted.

So get some sunlight.

When my morning routine inside is finished, I try to get outside for a few minutes. When it’s warm outside, I go barefoot and ground for a few minutes in the grass — I like to do my yoga then too. When it’s cold outside, I like to just go sit on the porch for a bit, and let the air wake me up.

Getting outside for a minute in the mornings reminds me that I’m alive, and that a new day is ahead. I recommend getting outside as part of your routine. You’ll notice a positive difference in your mind and body there too.

Make Your Bed

It’s the littlest thing you can do before you leave your room and start your day, but it makes a big difference.

It puts your mindset in a more organized and productive thinking space.

Plus, it literally takes 2 minutes.

So you might as well just do it.

I mean, there’s really nothing much more to expand on. Just do it because personally, it makes me feel way more put-together for the day.

Do Some Skincare — Make it Easy

I like to prep my skin for the day in the mornings, but I don’t do my entire routine. Skincare in the morning helps rehydrate the skin after being pressed against pillows and blankets all night. And, especially when it’s winter time, adding a bit of moisture to your skin when you’re up and moving again is super beneficial.

Make your skincare in the morning easy — two (2) or three (3) steps. I use my ice roller for about 60 seconds, and then I use my Summer Fridays Shadedrops Sunscreen (super important to use sunscreen through winter!) and let that sink into my skin. Finally, I use my BeautifEYE under eye patches and let those sit for about 10 minutes.

After I’ve hit the gym or done some movement for the day, I’ll get through the rest of my skincare routine, which is about seven (7) more steps HAHA.

So make your skincare easy too. Just a few steps to add moisturize back into your skin after having slept all night. It can be as easy as throwing some sunscreen and moisturizer on, or just cleansing your skin. It doesn’t have to be overly complicated.

But I do suggest doing some sort of skin-care/replenishing.

Get Some Movement In Shortly After

A half-hour (30mins) or at least 20 minutes, at least 3x a week.

I always find it easier to get my movement in an hour or two after I’ve woken up for the day, and before I accomplish anything else for the day.

Morning movement has its own set of benefits too — boosts your energy for the day, puts you in a better mood, allows for better sleep at night, and keeps ya productive and healthy.

An hour of exercise everyday is only 4% of your day. Which means 30 minutes is only 2%. You should be able to dedicate 2% of your day to movement.

The more you do it, the better you’ll continually feel. Eventually, it’ll become a habit and it will be easier to mentally prepare to get to it, day after day.

It can be any form of movement that you enjoy, or even hate the least. Here are a few ideas that I like to rotate through:

Yoga and Pilates — great for mobility and strengthening.

Weightlifting — great for strengthening and muscle building.

Walks — great for your mental health and are super effective for your entire body.

Be sure to find some type of movement that you can accomplish in the mornings. There are too many benefits for your emotional, mental, and physical health to make movement the practice you avoid.

My routine takes about 30 – 45 minutes to get through. But I’m in a circumstance where I work from home — so I have all the time in the world to accomplish my morning routine. Most human beings work in person with a set schedule, so they might not have that kind of time.

But, you can still craft a morning routine before your work day too; and you should. You should drink water, you should journal. You should stretch. You should get sunlight, and you should move. But you know better than anyone else what your body needs.

And you’re the only one who can carve out the time you need to ensure that you have a productive and positive day. It can be as long or as short a routine as you want. Create and customize a routine to your liking and needs, because that’s obviously what will make the most difference for you.

But I highly suggest you start doing so. These choices that you make right now are the choices that help you grow, or allow you to stay stuck.

So get a good morning routine down; it makes a difference.

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