Mornings are hands down my least favorite part of the day. I mean I just hate them. I’m sleepy and grumpy. Which is the worst combo, aside from being hangry. The room is cold, the bed is warm, there isn’t a single place more comfortable. I have snoozed my alarm 15 times and now I’m just in a bad mood. I need to get up and get ready, find breakfast, take the dog out, pack lunch. It’s just a lot to ask of a person at 5:45AM. But, sadly enough, the world doesn’t stop in the morning for me to get it together.
While mornings kind of suck (I’m just being honest), they really do set the tone for the entire day. I know you know this just as well as I do, that if something bad happens in the morning you automatically go drama mode and complain that the whole day is ruined. “My shirt is wrinkled. Here we go again. Such a Monday. Ready for the weekend. When can I go back to bed?” You put it on snapchat with the puppy dog filter hoping that it will somehow redeem the day that you consider to be ruined at 7:15am. We all do it. Sometimes a little sympathy is nice.
I’ve had to (forcefully) change my mentality about mornings. Some mornings I still sink into the dramatic pit of despair, but for the most part this change has made a HUGE difference. I want to challenge you to find a morning that works for you. The things that I do in the morning actually help me to have a better day and a more successful start to get one step closer to my goals. I’m never gonna be all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed but I do want to share what makes up my morning routine.
- Wake Up Early
- Waking up with 17 minutes until you have to leave for work isn’t ideal. It’s just a cluster at that point. Give yourself enough time to wake-up and do what you need to do to get ready in the morning. If something not-ideal happens in the am, you’re better able to bounce back from that if you have some time to adjust.
- Winter cheat: I always keep pants/sweatshirt at the foot of my bed for myself whenever I wake up. I know I will be freezing and the bed will be so warm that I never want to get up. If I can transition straight into warm clothes it helps.
- Waking up early gives you a few moments to have some quiet time. I like to refer to this as time to “get your mind right.” Whether this looks like time to pray, meditate, give yourself a pep-talk, or mindlessly scroll through Instagram… it gives you a little time to yourself. Because as all of us adults know, once your feet hit that floor, there is no more “me time.”
- I just never quite feel awake until I shower. But, I know many people shower at night. Whatever floats your boat. Just do whatever makes you feel the best and ready to tackle the day. Going through your daily routine un-showered is only okay when you’re in college and it’s finals week. Personal hygiene is key, people.
- Actually Get Ready
- Once again, this is whatever version you consider to be “ready.” Just be sure that you do whatever that is. I like to shower, fix my hair, and put on make-up. Because that’s when I feel my best and most successful. You need to start every day out feeling the best that you can.
- Pack a gym bag
- This can easily be done the night before. The key to the gym bag (which we have previously discussed) is that it’s reducing the need for excuses. You don’t have to come home and see your bed. Or your dog. Or the TV. The clothes are in the car and you can go straight to your workout. This is a perfect example how the choices you make in the morning set you up for success all day.
- Pack Food for the Day
- We are not living in the 1700s. You cannot just walk around and find some fresh fruits or veggies growing freely for your snacking pleasures. But, you can find a McDonald’s. If you have health goals, you have to pack food for the day. You’re gonna need breakfast, lunch, and snacks. Plan accordingly. Or pack the night before. Just remember to grab it out of the fridge (speaking from lots and lots of experience.)
- Eating in the AM
- THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT.
- Whenever you’re getting ready at home, you never seem hungry. But, it’s like as soon as you sit down at work an animal comes alive inside of you and you are ravenous. I always make a promise to myself, regardless of where I am or what I’m doing, that my breakfast will be healthy. Even if it’s something as simple as a banana and a protein bar. Eating a healthy breakfast helps to create the mindset that all of your food for the day will be healthy. If you start it off with some greasy, it’s over with. You might as well get chicken nuggets.
- I also fill up my water bottle again (I try to finish 32 ounces while I’m getting ready) and make some coffee. I’ve reached the age where coffee is a must.
- Take Care of the Small Things
- For example, I know I need to wake-up five extra minutes because I need to take the dog out. Or if there are a few dishes in the sink, go ahead and put those away. When you wake up in a fury like a speed demon, these little things get pushed aside. Take the time to do what you need to do. Be responsible.
- Get to work early
- Even if it’s only five minutes early. It gives you a moment to get settled. Everyone is going to come tearing in at 8:01. You’re all overwhelmed and tired and not quite ready to tackle another day. But, if you can just get five minutes of quiet to get settled, I promise that your day will be better and you’ll be better equipped to deal with it.
- Stop being dramatic
- I really struggle with this one. I am a bonafide drama queen. I embrace it. I mean we are all about honesty here right? Staying positive is difficult for me in the mornings, because I can easily get swept into the “whole day is ruined” mentality. Stop that. It’s too much. If something bad happens in the morning you don’t have to blow the whole day off. Brush it off and keep moving. Amazing things can happen on a day that started out with oversleeping and spilled coffee.
Mornings may not be your best friend. I mean mornings are like my fourth cousin by marriage. But, we still have to deal with them. Just by making small changes, it can make a huge difference. I like to set my tone for the day as soon as my feet hit the floor. I know myself and if my day starts out terribly and in a rush, I am going to spend the rest of the day trying to make up for it and ultimately getting caught up in a whirlwind. Take back your mornings and let them know who’s boss.
PSA: You’re the boss.