We all experience good and bad days — and good and bad mornings. For many people, the first hours of the day can be particularly problematic. To enhance your morning routine and start the day on a positive, productive note, it’s important to live intentionally. To make positive changes, we must consistently choose to do so until it becomes a habit. So how can we enhance our morning routine with healthy habits?
Start the night before: Do you have a hard time waking up in the morning? Many people do. It doesn’t mean you’re less capable of having a good morning, but rather that you need a little more planning to make the most of it. Prepare what you need for the morning ahead of time. Whether that be prepping breakfast, writing a to-do list or choosing your clothes the night before, find ways to make the morning less stressful and time consuming by planning ahead.
Get enough sleep: The quality of your morning greatly depends on the night before — and getting enough good quality sleep is crucial. From your mental to physical health, so much depends on making sure you’re well rested. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that adults get at least seven hours of sleep each night.
Make your bed: A great way to start your day is by making your bed. Not only does it start your day off on a productive note, but it also ensures you’ll come back to a more relaxing environment at the end of your day.
Eat breakfast: Eating breakfast is important because it gives you energy, regulates metabolism and helps your mind and body function the way they need to. Make healthy, nourishing breakfast choices such as eggs, whole grain cereal, fruit, oatmeal, or Greek yogurt.
Practice gratitude: Times may be difficult, but taking a few minutes to think about what you’re grateful for is a great way to enhance your morning and entire day with some extra positivity.
Exercise: Depending how much time you have in the morning, find low-impact activities — such as yoga or pilates — to warm up your muscles and get your heart pumping. Studies show that exercising in the morning gives you more energy, increases alertness and improves metabolism.
Get some sun: Getting some sunshine is a great way to improve your morning routine — natural light is essential for getting Vitamin D, and can also boost your mood! Consider sleeping with your blinds open so that you wake up to natural light. Another option is a sunrise alarm clock that mimics the effect of real sunlight.
Improving your morning routine can set a positive tone for your entire day. Do small things each morning to better your routine. Over time, those small changes can become habits, and those habits can improve your life as a whole — not just one morning!
This article first appeared in the March 2021 edition of the HealthPerks newsletter.