Whether you’re running your own business or have a busy life, maximizing all the time pockets in your day for a productive routine is incredibly important. The most important time period of all, believe it or not, is probably when you first get up. It’s your morning routine that can make or break your day.
You can stay in bed, hitting that snooze button and dreading what will follow, or you can get yourself set up for a day of success by using these simple steps to create a winning routine for your morning.
1. Let The Light In
Whether your light is mainly artificial or natural, it’s what signals your brain that it’s time to get up and to stop making melatonin, a hormone that regulates your sleep. Opening up your blinds or curtains and flipping on lights when you get up will help your body get into gear.
2. Get Positive
Attitude isn’t the easiest thing to set, but it is invaluable to your day. When you have a positive outlook, it can make a huge difference, and this is especially true at the start of your day.
Using an affirmation, such as “This day is mine to take,” or making a list of a few things you’re grateful for can start you off on a high note and set a positive tone for the rest of day.
3. Brush Your Tongue And Teeth
Brushing your teeth should be one of the very first things you do, and it only takes two minutes. According to Dental Excellence of Blue Bell, when you’re sleeping, your mouth has a drop in saliva production and dries out. With less saliva, you end up with more bacteria in your mouth.
Brushing your teeth thoroughly and hitting your tongue will help get rid of that harmful bacteria build-up from the night before. If you’re not already into flossing, add that in, too. While flossing in the evening may be more effective, if you don’t have the time to do it right then, add it to your morning for a healthier mouth.
4. Drink Some Water
Take just one minute to drink a large glass of water so you can replenish the fluids lost overnight. Do this after you’ve brushed your teeth, so you’re not swallowing all that nighttime bacteria. The jury is still out on whether warm water or cold water is more beneficial, but cold water may provide some extra health benefits.
As reported by Today, hydration is key to a properly running metabolism, and ice water may even boost your metabolism by 30 percent, as shown in a 2003 stuDY. Try going with the coldest water you can stand if ice water just isn’t your thing or you have teeth that are sensitive to cold.
5. Meditate For A Bit
Meditation doesn’t have to be an hour-long activity. Just a brief meditation session of six to seven minutes when you first get up will allow you to begin your day with a clear head and a calmer mindset. Simply sit in a quiet room with soft lighting, and practice your breathing.
If you’ve got the time and think you need a longer session, you can increase it up to about ten minutes. There are also short meditation routines available on apps and in online guides and videos, so look around for routines you like if breathing alone isn’t your thing or just isn’t working for you.
6. Find Five Minutes To Focus
While focusing may seem a part of meditation, the intention behind the two actions is different. When you meditate, you’re introducing silence to your mind. There’s no focus on actions, what you need to do over the day or thoughts. It’s just all about your breathing and the other relaxation and calming techniques you’re using.
When you take just five minutes to focus, however, you’re going to try to walk through what you need to do over the day. This isn’t about just reviewing your calendar. Here, what you want to do is prioritize your time and lay out all your activities.
Focus on what your key objectives for the day are and how you’re going to accomplish them. Set yourself mental goals, such as when you’re going to leave for work or spend time with your loved ones. It’s all about focusing on what needs to be done in your day to set yourself up for success.
At the end of the day, when you go to sleep, you can take a look at how your day went and shift your focus accordingly for the next day so you can get better results. When your five focus minutes are up, stop focusing and let your day unfold. You already know what you have to do, and your mind now has the clarity it needs to approach the day in the right way.
7. Add In Some Exercise
Moving is a part of building real success. This isn’t about being in perfect shape, however; you simply need to be able to move your body to shift your brain and your ideas around.
While you may already have a formal workout routine, adding five or seven minutes of exercise to your routine in the morning can help you feel more energized throughout the entire day.
Build your own short routine using some of your preferred exercises, or try short exercise apps that already have mini-workouts planned out for you to follow. If you’re a person who showers in the morning, make sure you exercise before you hop into the bathtub.
8. Try Stretching
As you age, you become less flexible. But you probably don’t have the time to deal with muscle pulls, back trouble or other physical limitations that can come with a busy lifestyle.
After you work out, take two minutes to fully stretch out your body to increase flexibility and ward off any problems. As with exercises, you can craft your own stretching routine, or use an app to find a short session that works for you.
9. Go For Protein
Cereal may be your breakfast staple, but it’s not necessarily the best way to start off your day. Food is what your body uses for energy, so protein is often the better choice.
Go for a meal full of protein, such as eggs, instead of dairy and grains. This will make your body work harder to digest it, keeping you more awake, and it will give you the energy necessary for your day. There’s many protein-packed breakfast recipes out there on the web that are simple and easy to prepare, so find ones that work with your schedule, diet and taste buds.
Use the easy steps above to prep yourself for a successful day. You’ll get the physicality, flexibility and mind clarity you need to one-up your competition in just less than 25 minutes every morning!