How To Set Up a Great Day With These 11 Effective Morning Habits
Have you been asked whether you are a “morning person” or an “evening person”? What time of the day works better for you, or when are you most agile, active and ready to take on the world? No matter what kind of a person you are and what time you start your day, it’s always good to have a morning routine that works for you and charges you up for the day.
Why Is It Important To Have a Routine?
First of all, do I need to have a routine? Why can’t I get up and do what comes to mind and go about my day as I feel like? Well, that’s not a bad idea, and we all have the freedom to live our day as we like. But if we want to accomplish something, then this free will has to be structured and more defined.
Here I share with you four advantages of having a routine.
1. Improved Focus
Having a planned set of activities to do in a day gives you a sense of control. It helps you improve focus and thus makes you more organised and productive. E.g. If I know I have to finish specific tasks at a particular time every day, making a routine around it will ensure I don’t miss out.
2. Reduce Unpredictability
A routine helps you reduce unpredictability and uncertainty, thus reducing stress.
Ofcourse you cannot plan for everything, and there will be situations you had not planned for. But if you already have a routine, these situations will be very few and easy to accommodate.
3. Inculcate Healthy Habits
In our daily grind of work, we may ignore certain things necessary to keep us sane and take care of mental health, such as working out or taking frequent breaks. This has become more prominent in today’s work from home scenario. But if we have adopted that routine as a habit, we will ensure that we take out time to follow that routine no matter what. We may alter the time or mode but not eliminate it. This also helps prevent burnout.
4. Lead by Example
As a parent, this by far is the most important aspect of a routine. Our children learn & imbibe what they see and not what they hear. Having a routine is a favourite discussion point in every household, especially with teens. How often have you told your teen to have a study routine, work our routine, or eat and sleep routine? But do you have a routine yourself?
Do you follow a disciplined lifestyle with a structured, planned day with a well-defined eating and sleeping routine?
If you don’t, your kids won’t.
Are You an Early Bird or Night Owl?
I touched upon this in the introduction but would like to go deeper into this categorization again.
I think it would be interesting to understand the routines for these two different types of people.
Early birds, or morning people, wake up early and are most productive in the early hours of the day. They may, however, have more trouble keeping up with social activities in the evenings because they likely start to feel sleepy by that time. Early birds tend to perform better in school and at work and may be more likely to get enough exercise each day.
Night owls makeup approximately 15% of the population and are most productive late into the evenings. Many are creative and more open to taking risks ( Reference Can You Be a Night Owl and an Early Bird?)
According to the definition, morning routines should work better for the Early birds, and Night owls do not need a morning routine. Well, if you are a Night owl, don’t give up on me yet and continue reading.
It’s equally essential for Night owls to have a morning routine as anyone else because it will make waking up less of a drag and help them start their day quickly & more effectively. While they may miss out on the luxury of having a complete morning routine, a mini version that suits their need, temperament and comfort can be equally effective.
Now that we have established the need for a morning routine let me share with you my morning routine. But before that, a little backstory to set the context here.
- How To Set Up a Great Day With These 11 Effective Morning Habits
- Why Is It Important To Have a Routine?
- Are You an Early Bird or Night Owl?
- My 2nd Innings
- Miracle Morning Routine to Recharge Your Mind and Soul.
- 1. Start Your Day Early
- 2. 30-Seconds Gratitude
- 3. Soak in the Sunrise
- 4. Start Your Day With Warm Water
- 5. My Morning Cuppa
- 6. Whats NEWS
- 7. My Morning Yoga Routine
- 8. Morning Meditation
- 9. Have My Miracle Juice
- 10. Healthy Breakfast
- 11. A Positive Attitude
- Main Takeaway
- 11 Simple Things You Should Do Every Morning To Be Happy & Productive
- More Self Care Posts
My 2nd Innings
My current work inning is my second one after a sabbatical of two years, and I had worked for 23 years continuously before taking this break. This break came from as a result of me migrating from India to Singapore in 2019 with my family, which included two teenage daughters, my husband and his parents.
I had a fantastic first inning at work and am thankful for all the experiences and learnings. Needless to say, as I grew through the hierarchy, the work responsibilities brought in their share of challenges. But being a typical Virgo, I ensured I planned my routines to include some bit of me time in mornings and evenings. But there were still many things that I could or rather did not plan for. These became my biggest Regrets of Corporate life. But life gave me a chance to redeem these, and my timely break helped me re-organise my priorities.
Therefore, when I re-entered the workspace three months back, I ensured these priorities were part of my morning or evening routine.
With this background, let me get into the morning routine I set for myself.
Miracle Morning Routine to Recharge Your Mind and Soul.
1. Start Your Day Early
An early start is given for those who still have kids going to school (even in their teens). While I don’t need to make them ready for school, I still like to pop in their rooms to wake them up even after the alarm is screaming on top of their heads. I also take a few minutes to sneak into the bed with them, and that’s the most amazing feeling ever.
2. 30-Seconds Gratitude
When you get up, don’t rush to get out of bed and start your day. Get up-Breathe-Express Gratitude. And you can decide how and whom to say thank you. It can be god, energies, angels or any source of life you believe in. Just 30 seconds, and then you can go about doing what you need to do. Needless to say, your phone can stay away from you for 30 more seconds.
3. Soak in the Sunrise
I think the best part of my new morning schedule is that I get to view the beautiful morning sky turn crimson to golden to bright blue in a matter of minutes. This transition automatically brings a smile to your face and sets the tone of the day. Even if you are not able to view the sunrise, the morning rays of the sun transmit powerful positive energy. Just draw the curtains and soak in that energy.
4. Start Your Day With Warm Water
The first thing I have in the morning is warm water to kick start my digestion. Warm water consumption in the morning preps your gut for the rest of the day and may contribute to weight loss. Specifically, it clears the intestines, prevents bloating, and gets rid of excess water weight via contraction of the bowels. Some people prefer to add lime, ginger or honey. None of these suit me; hence I like just plain warm water.
5. My Morning Cuppa
Again preferences may vary, but for me, a regular morning cup of tea with jaggery helps get me out of my slumber. I drink my tea with the morning dose of what’s happening around the world.
6. Whats NEWS
While I know many of you believe that using any kind of device early morning is not a good start to the day; honestly, I prefer to respond to my messages in the morning so that I do not get distracted during my work hours. I also like to catch up on what’s happening around the world, and all this happens in the window of 20 minutes that I get in between hunting for school socks to listening to teen morning cribbing.
7. My Morning Yoga Routine
I started Yoga online in 2020 when we were all isolated in our houses, and since then, it has become my passion. I was not working at that time, so it was easy to dedicate 45 minutes every morning. But on resuming work, I realised how difficult it is to accommodate so many things in the morning.
Yoga teaches you so many valuable lessons in life, and that’s one thing I did not want to eliminate. When I was working in India, I preferred to do my workouts in the morning, so it is back to the same schedule now. But with one more addition. Read on to find out.
8. Morning Meditation
This is a new addition to my morning schedule and a result of learnings from my past.
Just 15 minutes of meditation every day before I start my workday calms me down and helps me eliminate the noise within. I feel I can focus better and make balanced and informed decisions. It’s especially relevant when starting a new job as I did or a new project because there will always be teething issues that require you to be patient and believe in yourself.
9. Have My Miracle Juice
ABC Juice is nothing but Apple Beetroot Carrot Juice. It is called a miracle juice and helps in the detoxification of your body and promotes blood purification. This also increases the production of red blood cells, thus increasing haemoglobin, making you feel less fatigue. ABC juice is best had an empty stomach in the morning.
10. Healthy Breakfast
Breakfast is the most important meal for the day as it breaks the overnight fasting period. It replenishes your supply of glucose to boost your energy levels and alertness while also providing other essential nutrients required for good health.
I make it a point to include variations of cereals, proteins, milk and nuts in my breakfast which are both healthy & tasty.
11. A Positive Attitude
It is important to start your day with a positive attitude no matter what the day holds for you. There might be some problematic meetings or tasks lined up for the day, but you have already lost the battle by starting on a negative note. Your attitude can change the course of the day and brighten up not only your day but others too.
If you have read till here, you must be wondering that I always get up in a good mood and follow my routine to the fullest. Well, I am a human being and not a robot. There are days when I also feel grumpy and do not do the things in the same order or maybe shuffle up the sequence. And on the weekend, I choose to do my gratitude & meditation and take a break from exercising or replace it with a long walk. And that’s fine.
It’s also okay if you have your preferred morning schedule, which is very different from mine. As long as it works for you, you are good.
Remember what I said in the beginning, it is essential to have some routines governing our lives to be more productive, less stressed and lead a healthy lifestyle. This gains more importance in work from home environment where the lines between office and personal time get blurred, and one tends to override the other. In such situations having a routine will ensure you focus on the right things at the right time.
But do throw in some non-planned days in your routine too as they add to the excitement of going back to the routine.
If you found this blog helpful, please share it with your family and friends to get some tips on designing their morning routine.
A big thanks to my sister Dr Minni Chadha for the artwork on the blog header.
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11 Simple Things You Should Do Every Morning To Be Happy & Productive
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