What do most successful people have in common? You might start listing off their qualities or saying that they’ve been lucky to turn up in the right place at the right time. But success is a combination of hard work, personality, luck, and something else – habits.
Many of us go about our day, taking on things that come up as they come up. But can we make the day work for us and bring us closer to the goals we want to achieve?
Luckily, there’s plenty of things we can do to give ourselves an advantage in daily life. One of these includes a solid morning routine.
While some might think that routines are for toddlers but sets of habits and routines are essential to a healthy lifestyle1. They don’t require us to think about what we’re doing, therefore eliminating decisions during a busy time of the day. Additionally, having consistency is great for our mental health2.
How do you wake up?
Are you a serial snoozer? Getting up with the first alarm is best, as going to sleep in between your snoozes can mess with your sleep cycle3. In turn, that will make you groggy. Try opening your eyes with the first alarm and getting out of bed quickly.
Once you’re up, it’s time to start waking up the body and your mind.
Step 1. Awaken the body
Spending 7-9 hours in slumber means that your body will be quite dehydrated upon reawakening4. One of the first steps of any routine should be rehydration. Staying hydrated may help with energy levels and boost your mood5. You can stretch in bed or hop into a quick shower as well.
Step 2. Awaken the mind
The time after you wake up is the perfect time to squeeze in a quick meditation or mindfulness practice. That way, you won’t put it off and you can set the day off mindfully. Regular mindfulness and meditation have lots of positives, including improved well-being and better stress-management6.
Step 3. Healthy nourishment
Make sure that your day includes a nutritious breakfast. This meal not only helps you stay in shape and get sufficient nutrition; it also supports your cognition and boosts well-being7. If you can’t stomach down a lot of food, consider something on the lighter side, such as a smoothie. Add some protein powder, like Maxler 100% Golden Whey, to your smoothies for a creamy consistency and an extra protein boost.
If you’re a big coffee fan, reconsider starting your morning with coffee. Instead, choose to drink one after breakfast. There are multiple benefits to doing so. Your body will be able to better control your blood sugar levels if you wait on the caffeine8. Alongside that, your body is already making cortisol when you wake up, with the levels of this hormone peaking around 8:30 am9. Caffeine increases cortisol10, so drinking coffee straight after waking up won’t really do anything anyway.
Step 4. Movement for life
Did you know that most successful people begin their day with a bit of movement11? Whether it’s an hour-long gym session, 30 minutes of hit or a simple yoga routine, getting some movement post-sleep is great. In fact, moving can help you make healthier choices during the next 24 hours12. Exercise may improve your performance, boosting memory and decision making13.
If you really want to supercharge your day, head out for a walk within an hour of awakening14. The warmth of the sun will also raise your body temperature15. This will not only get you moving but will also boost alertness.
Step 5. Getting a head start
Another useful thing to do is to plan the priorities of the day. You can try goal setting, a to-do list or even writing a schedule. That way, you’ve got a structure to stay on top of your game.
Remember that successful routines work for the people that use them. A routine does the work for you, helping you get a head start early in the day. We’re all different and our days look different. Experiment and find the right option for you. Once you find your groove, seize the day!