Let’s be clear - I am not a morning person. For much of my life, I’ve begun the day, solidly on the struggle bus. On the purely physical side, being a light sleeper with wonky hormones who has turned 25 TWICE, plus one, brings its challenges. Add a brain intermittently firing off great ideas, to-do lists, and worst case scenarios at bedtime...
restorative sleep has often eluded me. I’ve made great strides to improve the physical component of sleeping and that is my first recommendation for anyone looking to positively alter their morning experience. That’s a whole topic onto itself, which we’ll cover at another time. For now, let’s just visualize (that’s pretend in woo) all of us getting a wonderfully rejuvenating 8 hours of slumber. OK, let’s get to the gooey good stuff - 5 simple steps to master your morning.
Step 1. Skip the snooze. I know, I’m starting with a biggie. The snooze button was my best friend and worst enemy. I still have a 1980’s alarm clock. It has two alarms, both loud and wretched. There were many mornings that I would hit the snooze button for an hour. Yes, I’d “sleep” for 15 minutes at a time for 60 minutes! This habit makes absolutely no sense as I wasn’t getting any quality rest and I was jolting my body into a bizarre state of semi-panicked fight or flight. No bueno. To break this pattern, there’s a few hacks that are very effective. The first one is obvious, refuse to hit the snooze button. This works for some people, but for me, it was such a foreign concept that I had to begin with a less drastic step. My trick is to have an alarm with two times, or two devices with separate alarms. Set an earlier “goal” time to rise and a 2nd, “no questions, I have to get up now,” time. If I feel like I need a few more minutes, I allow myself to rest for another 30 minutes, guilt free. There’s also the practice of setting an alarm in another room. Try each and determine which method works best for you.
Step 2. Create a daily, mindful practice. I mean c’mon, you KNEW I was going to include this! It may be challenging at first, but trust me, this will become a FAVORITE part of your morning routine. You get to select your mindful method of choice. It can be meditation, prayer, affirmations, gratitudes, breath work, etc. Whatever it is that you feel called to do is fine. Please note that this is a time for quiet reflection, not to go over the day’s agenda. We’ll get to that..
Step 3. Move your body. I’ll be honest - this is the area that is most difficult for me. Some days I’m getting in a workout. Some days I’m just stretching, still in bed. Listen to your body and be gentle. It IS the morning after all, and our bodies need time to wake up, too. Doing a gentle yoga class is one of my fave ways to get my body geared up for the day!
Step 4. Prioritize time for yourself. WOAH, you’re all thinking that I’ve about lost my bleepin mind. You don’t have any time for yourself, most especially in the morning! I’m calling BS, and here’s why...We all have 24 hours in a day. That’s 1,440 minutes. Maybe it’s just 5 or 10 minutes that is combined with one of the mindfulness practices above. Perhaps it’s taking a few moments to relax and savor a cup of coffee or tea. For me it’s my Reiki practice, a long hot shower or walking the pups. It doesn’t matter what you decide to do, just choose YOU above everyone and everything else. Fill up your cup to be the best version of yourself. Then, pour in to all of the people you support in your life.
Step 5. Plan and prepare for a brilliantly successful day! This is a hybrid morning/evening practice. My life is such that I have the time to accomplish tasks in the evenings. I do as much as possible before going to bed, thereby limiting menial tasks to slow me down in the morning. Your schedule might not afford that flexibility, but if it does, take advantage! Pre-set the coffee maker. Pack lunch for yourself and your family. If you work outside of the home, select your outfit for the workday. Add your top 3 “must achieve” agenda items to your planner or phone for the next day. Keep a list of the other things you’d like to accomplish in a notepad or your phone’s notes section. Know that when you go to rest your head on your pillow at night that those items are safe and sound for you to retrieve the next day. At the very end of your morning routine, check on those items and add any other reminders for what you wish to achieve. You’ll notice that this is the only step that your phone or electronics are mentioned. Ideally, you are completing your morning routine before ever looking at your phone, laptop or any technology. OG 80s alarm clocks are exempt. Ooh, I can feel your eyes glaring in disbelief coming through the interwebs. Give it a try and do your best.
So, there you have it. 5 steps to master your morning and win the day.
Do you have a masterful tip that I didn’t cover or an inspired action you’re excited to try? Share in the comments so we may all expand our morning mastery and make every day awesome!
Want more tips to uplevel your mornings even more? Join me and morning mastery expert Hannah Costello for our Rise + Raise online workshop. Follow this link to register, Rise, Raise and SHINE! linktr.ee/rebalance_revolution