What kind of person are you first thing in the morning? Someone who springs out of bed, ready to start the day with not a second of hesitation? Or maybe someone who rolls over and would rather get an extra few hours of sleep? Personally, I’m a mixture of the two. There are some days where the second my eyes open, I am up and ready to get my day started, but there are others where the only thing I want to do is close my eyes and pretend it is still night time. I’m sure that I’m not the only one who is somewhere in the middle. No matter what type of person you are when the sun comes up, we all still have to get out of bed and face the day ahead, and sometimes it takes a lot of willpower to start the day on a good note. Well, today, that is what I would like to discuss. How you can start each and every day on as good a note as possible, because even though we all wake up differently and have different things to face, there are a few things you can do the night before and in the morning itself that can set you up to have a great start to your day. It may not give you a positive protective bubble for the entire day, but it can start you off on the right note.
You might ask why it is so important to start the day on a good note if things might end up getting ruined or we are just going to have to suck it up and get on with it, irrespective of your mood. Well, it is essential to start the day on a good note because it sets the tone and your mood for the entire day. Starting the day off positive and productive leaves you in that kind of mood, where you want to keep doing things positively and productively, but it also makes you feel empowered when you start the day on a strong note that isn’t grumbly, chaotic or just a miserable disaster. Starting the day right, with good habits or a morning routine allows you to control your day and how you handle things. You control your day instead of the day controlling you. So, without further ado, here are ten tips that can help you have a great start to the day! I hope you enjoy it!
Get a good night of sleep
You should always aim to sleep between seven and eight hours a night so that you can feel rested and refreshed when you wake up. Now I know that this might be wishful thinking for a lot of people and I completely understand that. Jobs may interfere (my parents are doctors who have both worked crazy hours). Work might interfere (I’ve been there. Staying up all hours of the night to get work done or to study). Life, in general, may not allow you to sleep for very long, but if you can, you should try to get in those sleep hours. Having enough sleep will allow you to wake up nicely and have enough energy to get through your day, but it will also start you off on a good note because you will feel refreshed and lively instead of like a groggy Zombie. I know it can be hard, but it makes such a difference to the way you start your day.
Set out stuff the night before
This is such a great lesson to learn because it will see you through everything for years to come. If you have things that you need to take for your day, pack them the night before. Make sure that everything you need is set out or packed so that you don’t have to scramble to do it if you oversleep and are in a hurry. You can even set out the clothes you want to wear before you go to sleep. The only thing it will do is save you a few precious minutes in the morning. Now the reason I suggest that you do all of this the night before is that it allows you to be more organised. There is less chance of you forgetting things if you do it the night before, but you also won’t have to rush or stress about it or make your morning chaotic through doing it if it has been done the night before. I can’t tell you how many times I have thanked myself for packing the night before on days where I have overslept, or things have become chaotic because, at the very least, I am organised and won’t forget anything behind. Trust me when I say you won’t truly appreciate this habit until you embrace it, but once you do, you’ll always be thankful for it.
Optimise your alarms
Alarms can sometimes be terribly annoying. Sometimes they don’t wake us up because we haven’t selected the right alarm sound or we hit snooze in our sleep and end up being late for everything. I’m sure there isn’t a single person out there who hasn’t had at least one alarm issue in their life (if you are the exception, I applaud you because wow!). So, how to get around this is to optimise your alarms. On the weekend, fiddle and see what sounds actually wake you up. Now, don’t be crazy and ruin a perfect opportunity for a sleep in if you don’t have to. So, set your alarm for a reasonable hour. But, doing it on the weekend (if you don’t have commitments) allows you to test things out and find the exact right alarm ring for you without the pressure that if it doesn’t wake you there will be an issue. The next part of optimising your alarm is to put it out of arm’s reach. That way, you won’t just be able to silence it in your sleep or roll over, hit snooze and go back to sleep. You will have to leave the comfort of your bed to switch it off, which will help you wake up. However, I know that a lot of people have their alarms on their phones, which people charge next to their beds, so find a way to just put the phone far enough away so that you can’t reach it from in your bed. Once you know what sound will wake you up and you actually have to get up to switch off the noise, you are already up and ready to get going.
Start the day smiling
I know that this sounds ridiculous but remember that I said starting the day on a good, positive note can set the mood for the rest of the day. So, once you’re awake, try to start the day smiling, or at least thinking about something positive or that makes you happy. You may not mean it at first, but soon it will become a habit, which will allow you to start your day in a positive mindset. It may sound silly and corny, but think about the last time you woke up in a good mood, and how great it felt starting out that day? Well, making a point to smile or think positively in the morning and fostering that into a habit will allow you to feel that way every day, so what’s to lose if the results can only be positive (pun intended 😀 )
Wash your face, brush your teeth and drink some water
Once you’re out of bed, a good idea is to head straight to the bathroom to wash your face, brush your teeth and drink some water. Why do this? Well, you will foster the muscle memory of getting up and going straight to the bathroom, and this habit will stop you from just walking back to bed and going to sleep. It keeps you up for long enough so that you can start to wake up. Washing your face and brushing your teeth first thing in the morning will also be a refreshing wake up because of the water on your face and the freshness in your breath, so by the time your above-shoulder area is squeaky clean, you should be wide awake with no danger of going back to sleep. Lastly, the reason why I added having a drink of water is that our body can get dehydrated after seven or so hours without a drop of liquid, so your body will certainly be thankful if you replenish its water supplies.
Open the curtains and make your bed
Let’s first talk about the curtain part of this point. Some people like to sleep with their curtains closed while others don’t. If you are like me and have no trouble sleeping with open curtains, then you can skip this little bit and move on to the ‘make your bed’ part. Other people who sleep with their curtains closed sometimes like to open them the second their feet are out of bed and if that is how you want it, then do it. But otherwise, now is the time that you should open the curtains and let the sunshine through because the light from the sun will wake up your brain. A good habit, if you don’t already, is to make your bed once you are more awake and functional. Making your bed in the morning has been proven to make you feel like you have accomplished something, even if it is a small thing like making your bed. It also motivates you to continue achieving things and means that you can’t sneak back to sleep.
Write down your to-do list
It’s always a good idea to write your to-do list for the day first thing in the morning because you do it when you are fresh and have lots of energy and motivation to get it done. Writing it in the morning is also helpful because it helps you plan your day. You know what needs to get done, so you can adjust your plans accordingly so that you don’t forget anything or not leave enough time for it. It is, in general, a great way to help you organise your day because it helps you set your goals, plan things out and make sure that you don’t leave things undone that will only end up becoming a massive stress because it didn’t get done in time. It is also just so much easier to crush your goals and get things done when you know exactly what you need to do, which is why there isn’t really a great reason to not get that daily to-do list done as soon as you are awake enough to write things down.
Do some exercise
Doing some form of activity in the morning, whether it is yoga, stretching, cardio or even HIIT, is never a bad idea. It wakes you up more, gets your body energised and active, is good for your health and it stretches out your joints and muscles from their still, dormant period. Another reason why exercise is a good thing to fit into your morning is that it is usually the best time to do it. Think about it, your battery is fully charged, and your energy levels are high. At the end of the day, you are tired, possibly grumpy if you had a bad day, and it takes a lot more motivation to convince your now-tired body to do any form of physical activity. Exercising in the morning means you get to tick that box before the day has even really started and you won’t need to stress about trying to squeeze it in later. How great is that?
(However, if you are a person who just prefers exercising in the afternoon, then that is your call. Everything works differently for different people, I just personally find it far easier to do my exercise in the morning because by the time the afternoon rolls around, I have almost zero motivation to go up stairs let alone go the gym.)
Have a nice, hot shower
If you aren’t awake by now, then I might be a little concerned, but having a nice, hot shower should wash away any of the remaining sleep in you. It will be refreshing to get clean if you have exercised but a nice, hot shower in the morning can also be incredibly energising. My boyfriend, for example, could still go back to sleep if he doesn’t shower in the morning, but once he has showered, he is 150% awake. Showers are also helpful because you feel empowered and ready to face the day, but they also get you out of your pyjamas (if you haven’t already changed to exercise) and into proper clothes, which will add to or strengthen your productive mood.
Breakfast and GO!
The last thing you should do in the morning before you go off to work, school or whatever, is have breakfast and GO! Even if you aren’t a breakfast person, you should still put something in your system at the beginning of the day because it wakes up your body’s metabolism, but it also gives your body energy to start you on your day. Eating a little something gives your body fuel to start you off on your productive day and will stop you from getting sluggish, having headaches or just not being as productive as you could have. Once you’ve had breakfast (even if it is tiny), then you should be awake, ready and in the right place to have a great start to your day. Now, your day is your oyster, and you are in control of it. Go and enjoy it!
And so there you have it! I hope you all enjoyed reading today’s blog post and found it at least a little bit helpful or useful. Sometimes it can be hard to start the day off the right way or get motivated or even wake up in the morning and using these tips have really helped me start my days in a more productive way where I am also in a much more positive headspace. I hope that at least one of these tips can be helpful to you. For my questions of the day:
- What kind of morning person are you?
- What is the one thing that gets you out of bed?
- Do you have an interesting morning habit or routine that you would like to share?
Please don’t feel shy to answer these questions or leave comments in general. I love hearing from all of you, and it is fun to chat about these sorts of things. Apart from that, thank you all so much for reading. If you enjoyed, please don’t forget to hit that little like button at the bottom of the post and subscribe so that you don’t miss out on any future blog posts. You guys are all so amazing, and I love each and every one of you. I wish you all great, happy, productive mornings and a fantastic weekend ahead.
Lots of Love
Blondey on a Mission xxx