How to Start a Morning Routine (Even If You're Lazy)
By Milly Hailstone
If you are feeling like it’s time to up level, or grow up a little it’s time to create a morning routine. Just like the saying goes, ‘Win the morning, win the day!’ Now, before we dive deep into creating your new morning routine, we need to first figure out how to make time for it. Yep, you know what I'm going to say... you need to wake up earlier. It might suck at first, but please hear me out!
Say Goodbye to Sleeping In
These days I wake up at 6:30 am, which is something I never thought I would do, and I know it sounds totally horrible but it's actually working out great. I believe the way you start your day is the way it will continue.
Think about it - have you ever had one of those days where you wake up late, you start rushing, miss the bus, and your whole day turns to shit?! Seriously, when you wake up a mess, a chain reaction happens and your day just gets packed full of anxiety and bs. So, what if you started everyday relaxed, happy, and mindful? Then, you could enjoy every single day. However, in order to wake up earlier you'll need to go to bed earlier too.
Getting a rested night of sleep is an important tactic in the battle against anxiety, so please don't miss out on your beauty sleep! To get a decent 7.5 hours of sleep, I'll be in bed by 10 or 11pm on weeknights.
You can use Bedtime on iPhone or a FitBit if you have one to track your sleeping pattern and figure out if you are getting enough rest.
Ok, now let's get to your new morning routine!
Rule: NO social media or emails until you've been awake for more than 1 hour (more if possible).
1. Wake Up at 6:30 am
Easier said than done, I know, but I've thought up a few tips to make it easier:
- Instead of using a deafening alarm that will wake you up with a start, pick something more relaxing like Tibetan Singing Bowls or one of your favorite songs.
- Make sure you're alarm isn't the same as your ringtone. The thought of someone calling me that early in the morning gives me instant anxiety and so it's not a good idea to start your day like that.
- As soon as you are awake, don't snooze or hesitate as you'll probably talk yourself into going back to sleep! The best thing you can do, is count to 5 and just get up.
Uh huh, it's time to get some H20 inside your body. If you stay hydrated throughout the day, your body can function how it's supposed to. Why not add some sliced cucumber to a water jug before you go to bed the night before? Everyone loves cucumber water!
Side note: DO NOT think it's ok to replace water with coffee! Yeah, there is water in coffee, but it's just not the same. In fact, if you have anxiety you shouldn't be drinking coffee at all. Don't hate me. Decaf exists. If you wanna read more about coffee and anxiety, click here.
Now it's time to gently wake up your body. Stretch your neck, back, arms, and legs or even do some chilled out yoga. I'd fully recommend learning some basic Asanas like Cat/Cow, Downward Facing Dog, and Child's Pose that you can do each day.
The best yoga on Youtube: Yoga with Adriene
This will make you feel extremely peaceful - a perfect way to get your body moving in the morning. I want you to really enjoy this time that you've created for yourself, take some deep breaths and really get in tune with your body.
4. Make a List
Now that you've been awake for a little while, you brain might be buzzing already. Chances are, you're thinking about what you need to do today and maybe that's causing anxiety to creep in.
Jot down your to-do list or any thoughts that are bothering you and then move on with your routine.
5. Eat Something Delicious & Healthy
You've heard this 1000 times already, but breakfast really is the most important meal of the day!
Quick and healthy breakfast ideas:
- Avocado Bagel
- Oatmeal/Porridge with fresh fruit
- Peanut butter and banana on toast
- Chia Seed Pudding (you can meal prep this the night before in about 60 seconds)
6. Gaze at the World
In the morning the world is so beautiful and still. No matter how busy the city you live in is, you can find peace during the early hours.
What I like to do is open the window and gaze at the world. To me, this feels like a really grounding experience - you can hear birds singing, the wind blowing and not much else. In this chaotic world, be grateful for the moments of peace you can find.
7. Shower/Get Ready
The obvious part of your day, yet so much more enjoyable when you aren't rushing. Play some music that puts you in a happy mood and even if it's Monday you'll be fine.
If you're a gym babe like me, you'll notice that I haven't really scheduled any exercise time into your morning routine - but that doesn't mean it's not important.
To fit your workouts in, rotate your morning routine around your workouts. For example, go to the gym on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays and use this morning routine for all of the other days.
Pro Tip: On Sundays, do whatever you want!
Let's Start Tomorrow
If you're not convinced about this, just try it for a week or two. Starting a morning routine is really about creating space to do something for yourself. Once you begin a journey of self love so many aspects of your life will heal.
Good luck tomorrow and I hope you have a fantastic morning.