Let’s be honest. No one woke up like dis.
For as long as I can remember, I have never been a morning person. As a child, my mother would greet me when I woke up with a cheerful, “Good morning darling,” and I would just sit and look at her without responding. Even as an adult, I prefer to be quiet during early morning hours and loud, happy people sometimes annoy me.
Whether you wake up smiling or feel like punching someone in the face when they say, “Good Morning,” having a daily routine can help create a positive and productive day.
Here are my 7 Morning Routine Tips:
1 — Eat a Healthy Breakfast.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Think of your body as a car that needs fuel to drive around all day. A good breakfast is essential and should have a combination of protein and carbohydrates to give your body energy. Whole grain toast, eggs, fruits, nuts, and low-fat yogurt are some options. For more ideas of a healthy breakfast, be sure to check out some of my “Breakfast Recipes” on the blog.
2 — Exercise and Meditate.
There are many benefits to exercising including cardiovascular, weight loss, an increase in energy levels, and improved mood. A morning exercise routine can help jump start your day. I do a daily “Morning Practice” which often includes a combination of Pilates, yoga, and meditation. Meditation can decrease stress and anxiety, and help you to gain clarity and peace of mind. For more information about meditation, I recommend reading, “You Are Buddha: A Guide to Becoming What You Are,” by Dennis Hunter. This book is a practical guide to learning meditation and also discusses working with troublesome thoughts and feelings.
3 — Shower and Shave.
Every morning, I take a shower and shave my legs. A shower feels like a day at the spa where I use my favorite natural soaps, body creams, and oils. For a morning shower, I prefer soaps with peppermint and rosemary which helps to wake me up. I love the invigorating scent of Burt’s Bees Fabulously Fresh Peppermint & Rosemary Body Wash ($8.00),and the Rosemary Olive Oil Bar Soap from Sabon ($6.80).
4 — Read.
The morning is my favorite time to sit quietly and read either a book or articles about health, fitness, and current events. Reading is not only informative but it helps to get your brain working and to create focus at the start of the day.
5 — Set and Review Goals.
“Without goals, and plans to reach them, you are like a ship that has set sail with no destination.”
– Fitzhugh Dodson
Setting and reviewing goals is important in order to make plans to accomplish them. If you have a goal for the day, week, or month, making plans in the morning can result in a more productive day.
6 — Practice a Foreign Language.
Medical studies suggest that learning more than one language improves brain function and delays the onset of dementia and Alzheimer’s. According to the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL), learning to speak multiple languages can enhance ones focus, memory, and cognitive and creative abilities. I often do a 30min French language lesson in the morning through a program by Pimsleur (www.pimsleur.com). You can purchase 5 lessons at a time for $21.95 and a free iPhone app is available for downloading.
7 — Listen to Music.
According to WebMD, listening to music can lower high blood pressure, reduce stress, and boost your mood. I love listening to music all day and especially in the morning. I often listen to classical and downtempo songs when I first wake up, and more upbeat tracks in the shower and on my way to work.
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