The way you spend your morning can have a massive impact on how the rest of your day goes. It sets the tone for how productive you will be and how you will feel.
If you concentrate on constructive activities from the get-go, you are more likely to keep the momentum going throughout the day. Think about the last time you rolled out of bed, groggily got ready and grabbed some coffee on the way out the door. How did your day go?
Now imagine you wake up with plenty of time to set an intention for the day, get a workout in, eat a healthy breakfast and still have plenty of time to freshen up. The day that follows should be exceptional.
To give you an idea of what you can do to jump-start your day, we researched some scientifically-proven steps for the perfect morning routine. While you may not have time for every item on the list every single day, keeping these items in your morning rotation of activities can be highly beneficial.
Establishing a Morning Routine For Success
To create the perfect day, you will need to develop a morning routine that works for you. If you’re not a morning person, you may need to train yourself to follow your morning routine. You can start small, waking up 15 minutes earlier for a few days and then increasing this time until you achieve your desired wake up time. Once you have the time, you can start incorporating some of these things into your routine.
1. Drink a Glass of Lemon Water
Celebrity Morning Routine: “The first thing I do is have hot water with lemon and probiotics.” —Naomi Campbell
The benefits of drinking lemon water has been celebrated for many years. Not only does it give you a boost of vitamins and antioxidants, but the flavonoids in lemon water can also treat many health issues like type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
All you need to do is cut some lemons ahead of time or infuse some water with lemons and then pour yourself a glass to drink. This should be one of the first things you do when you get up.
2. Stretch or Practice Yoga
Celebrity Morning Routine: “Gotta do yoga, not for my body but for my mind! DO YOGA or GO CRAZY!” – Miley Cyrus
Stretching and yoga are more important for overall health than many people realize. Not only are they great for your muscles, but they can also have an antidepressant effect as well. Those who practice yoga regularly have lower cortisol levels, which helps them to manage stress throughout their day.
If you don’t have time to attend a yoga class or do a full practice on your own, there are a few simple stretches you can incorporate into your daily routine that can make all the difference.
3. Work Out
Celebrity Morning Routine: “I live in a gated community with lots of horse trails, so I run on those, or on the treadmill in our home gym. My workouts are usually about an hour, maybe an hour and 15 minutes total, but I like to mix them up.” – Kim Kardashian
Working out in the morning not only curbs your appetite for the rest of the day and prevents you from overeating, but it also has tons of other benefits. Studies show that people who work out in the morning burn more fat throughout the day, have reduced blood pressure and sleep better at night.
If you’re not the type to get into a full-on sweat session, you can do a short, 10-15 minute routine in the mornings and build from there. You’ll feel so good afterward, you might decide to keep upping the intensity!
4. Practice Meditation and Mindfulness
Celebrity Morning Routine: “I do some form of walking or sitting meditation. I like to sit in a window seat in my house or outside on the balcony. If I am in a hotel, I will just sit in a chair. If I have the time, I’ll do 20 minutes; if I am in a rush, I’ll do at least 10 to 12 minutes.” – Oprah Winfrey
Incorporating some quiet time into your morning for reflection and meditation can help you energize. Studies show meditation activates your parasympathetic nervous system, which leads to a boost of endorphins.
Setting time for meditation can also help combat stress and can even increase your ability to multitask! There are several apps that can help you get started in meditation. If you’d rather go it on your own, this article from Gaiam can be a great place to start.
5. Have a Cup of Coffee
Celebrity Morning Routine: “I’m not a breakfast person. I love breakfast foods at lunch or dinner. I love my morning coffee. Right now, I’m loving my Bulletproof Coffee.” – Arianna Huffington
Coffee is a necessity for many people, but did you know that it can actually be a healthy part of your morning routine? Studies show there are many benefits to drinking coffee, like a reduced risk of diabetes. It has also been shown to lower the risk of liver cancer by about 40%.
6. Take a Cool Shower
Celebrity Morning Routine: “I’ll admit, cold showers take some getting used to, but I started doing it a couple of years ago and love it. It really improves circulation, and afterward, I feel so warm because the blood is really circulating and my heart is beating faster.” – Rens Kroes
While taking a cold shower first thing in the morning sounds daunting, its benefits are numerous. Not only is it good for your skin and nails, but a cold shower can also improve circulation, stimulate weight loss and speed up muscle recovery.
If taking a cold shower is unpleasant for you, try starting off warm and ending your shower with a cold shot to reap some of the same benefits.
7. Execute a Skin Care Routine
Celebrity Morning Routine: “I’m very diligent about my skin-care routine. Every morning I use iS Clinical Cleansing Complex, an active serum and a hydra-cool serum. Once that’s settled, I’ll apply a control corrective sunscreen.” – Rosie Huntington-Whiteley
No matter who you are, practicing a skin care routine in the morning has many benefits. Even if it’s just cleansing your face and adding some moisturizing sunscreen, the health of your skin is very important. Having healthy skin can keep you from getting sick and can prevent damage to your organs, muscles and bones.
Many people even say that having a skincare ritual can have mental health benefits. When you take the time in the morning to concentrate on self-care, it can help you focus for the day ahead.
8. Eat A Protein-Rich Breakfast
Celebrity Morning Routine: ”Usually I’ll have a shake, with some sort of pure protein, then bananas, blueberries, frozen cherries, stevia, a vegetable mix of dynamic greens that goes in there, maca powder and a little cacao.” – Jennifer Aniston
If you can make time for breakfast in the morning, it can help control your appetite, balance your hormones and set you up for a great day. Studies show that a high protein breakfast can help you feel satisfied throughout the day and improve your diet overall.
We don’t all have time to make a huge breakfast every morning, but these quick breakfast recipes are all high in protein and some can even be prepared ahead of time!
9. Practice Gratefulness
Celebrity Morning Routine: “The first thing I do when I wake up in the morning … is sit up and think of five things I’m grateful for that have either happened to me already or that I want to do that day that will, in turn, make me grateful.” – Julianne Hough
Giving thanks can make you happier. Studies show that those who practice gratitude on a regular basis rather than concentrating on things that annoyed them felt better about their lives and were more optimistic.
Another University of Pennsylvania study found that writing a letter of gratitude to someone increases happiness levels up to a month. Cultivate gratitude by keeping a gratitude journal, reciting the things you’re grateful for daily or thanking people mentally for things you are grateful for.
10. Smell Some Essential Oils
Celebrity Morning Routine: “I tried [Emmis Lime essential oil] once and it became a ritual for a long time. It has an enlivening quality to it…and a cleanliness that inspires the deepest of breaths. I often put this oil just at the base of my nose.” – Alanis Morissette
While you’re performing your morning routine. it can be helpful to introduce a relaxing or energizing scent into the environment. Studies show that certain scents (like lavender) reduce anxiety and improve the mood.
Scents like jasmine and citrus can re-energize the body, improve the mood and increase alertness. Why not diffuse an essential oil that will help you start your day off on the right foot?
It can be difficult to get a routine built into your life, but the potential rewards are great. It takes discipline, intention and follow-through. While it can sometimes seem easier to get your day started in the way you’ve been used to, building a routine around good habits will become less difficult over time. Stick with your morning routine and watch your productivity levels rise!