7 Morning Habits That Will Change Your Life

7 Morning Habits That Will Change Your Life

Ugh, morning. So many of us hate getting up in the morning. It’s so easy to end up in a really cranky mood!

For a long time, I was one of the haters. I set my alarm for the latest possible time, and then I hit snooze about a billion times before I finally dragged my annoyed (and probably late) self to the shower.

After years of dreading the sunrise, I decided to make some big changes in my morning routine, although it didn’t happen immediately. I knew I needed to make changes in my mornings, but I held on tightly to the idea that I needed those extra 20 minutes of sleep! Of course, this came at the expense of rushing around to get out the door and stressing myself out in the process!

Until this year, I had to leave the house by 7am, and I was determined to get up at 5:45. Now I realize that some of you are thinking, “An hour and 15 minutes? That’s plenty of time! What’s the big deal?” Well, for me, it’s a big deal. I’m not a get-up-and-go kind of girl!

Now I have to leave by 7:15am, and I’ve decided to get up at 5:15. That’s a whopping 2 hours to get myself ready for the day, and missing out on that extra 30 minutes of sleep is completely worth it.

Of course, this means I have to be more mindful of my bedtime, or I won’t be able to function during the day.

According to WebMD, the average adult needs 7.5-8 hours of sleep each night. Some people can get by on less, and some will need more, but this is a good average.

In order to have a productive and fulfilling morning, you’ll need to make sure you get enough sleep. I know it’s hard to go to bed earlier than you want to, but honestly, just do it. You’ll feel so much better if you actually wake up rested!

 

Why do mornings matter?

 

You know that cliche about waking up on the wrong side of the bed? Well, there is some actual truth to that often-used accusation for the grumpy girl. If your morning starts out wrong, you’ll have a harder time redeeming your day.

The first 10 minutes after you wake up are the most influential time, so it’s important to have a mindful routine and ritual in place to make sure your mind and body are happy from the start.

“You will never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.” -John C. Maxwell

 

Here are 7 super easy habits you can create to have healthier mornings.

 

Don’t hit snooze.

Just don’t do it. Choose a time to get up, and tell yourself that the snooze button isn’t even an option. Hitting snooze and going back to sleep makes your brain start its sleep cycle all over again, and when your alarm goes off again, you’ll be in a deeper sleep than you should be; this will actually make you feel much worse.

Stretch first thing.

Stretching first thing in the morning has several health benefits, including muscle and joint flexibility, stress relief, and improved circulation. So take some deep breaths and stretch for a minute or two before you get out of bed.

Drink water before your feet hit the floor.

About 60% of your body is made of water, and after sleeping for 7-8 hours without water, your parched body is practically begging to be replenished. Appease it!

Eat a healthy breakfast.

I used to think I couldn’t eat a hot breakfast during the week, but now I do it every day. What’s the secret to having time for a healthy, hot breakfast when you don’t have a lot of time? Meal prep. You can easily make a week’s worth of sweet potato hash or sauteed apples over the weekend. Add some fresh fruit or a couple of fried eggs, and you can have a great breakfast without being late to work!

Play music while you’re getting ready.

Music changes moods. You might want to start your morning with upbeat music, or you might prefer something calming and relaxing; whatever you choose, be sure it makes you feel good and charges your morning!

Turn off your phone notifications.

This one has really surprised me. On mornings I leave my notifications on, and I reply to text messages, I am always late to work. I never realized just how much a minute here and a minute there adds up! Before you know it, you’re fifteen minutes behind! If you’re worried about emergencies, just flip your phone over to its “do not disturb” mode; the people who need you will be able to reach you.

Read something positive.

Whether you choose to read your Bible or some kind of positive, encouraging book, this practice is something that makes a big difference. Turn off the music and the phone, and take a few minutes to soak your mind in words. (I do this while I eat my breakfast.)

“When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive- to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.” -Marcus Aurelius

 

You should get to know yourself and your needs so that you can create a morning routine that works for you, but here is a glimpse into mine:

  • 5:15- Alarm goes off and I stretch/drink water
  • 5:20- Shower/Get Ready + Drink more water and listen to music (Phone is on silent)
  • 6:30- Make breakfast + update food/body journal
  • 6:45- Eat breakfast/read a chapter in a book/write in gratitude journal
  • 7:00- Last-minute preparation for the day
  • 7:15- Leave the house CALM AND COLLECTED

This has become such a perfect routine for me that it’s actually timed within 5 or so minutes every day. When you do the same thing every day, it all becomes habit and you don’t have to think about it. I don’t even have to check the time anymore!

Oh, another tip for you, and if you do this, you deserve a gold star!

Keep your routine on the weekends! Yes, I am telling you that I get up before 6am every weekend. Do I have to? No, but my body is on a schedule and I just feel better when I don’t sleep in.

This stuff takes commitment at first. You’ll need to train your mind and body to make these changes, but habits form with consistency, so it’s very doable. And I promise it’s worth it. You won’t regret giving up that extra 30 minutes of sleep in the morning. Trust me.

What are some things you do to make your mornings run smoothly?

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  • I’ve fallen into a pretty bad SNOOZE habit lately that I need to break, but otherwise I love my morning routine with meditation, a morning workout, and a delicious cup of coffee!

    • thiskathryngirl

      That sounds lovely! I’m not a coffee girl myself. Caffeine hates me!!!

    • I wish I had time in the morning to work out, but I would have to get up at 4 to get everything in!!!!

      • You probably don’t want to know my alarm goes off at 4:15am. haha! I’m such a morning person though and I LOVE my quiet start to the day.

  • Amen to ALL of this! I purposely wake up a little early so that I can ensure I have a great morning.

    • thiskathryngirl

      It’s the best idea ever! I’m so glad I started doing it!

    • It’s one of the best choices I ever made!

  • Sharon Glascoe

    I do almost all of these. Woohoo! I always watch TV before I start getting ready and it’s usually The Tonight Show from the night before so I guess it’s positive. So I sub that for reading something positive.

  • Kathryn, you have just inspired me to become a better version of myself. The thought of not hitting snooze in the morning is almost hard to imagine, but this is a goal I want to strive for. Thanks for the amazing suggestion!
    Much love,
    Ashley from Dear Ash

    • thiskathryngirl

      I’m so excited that you want to reach the tough goal of not hitting snooze! I did it for years, so I get what you’re saying about it being hard to imagine. But habits are learnable, and if you’re intentional about it, you can totally do it! <3 Heading to your blog now!

    • Hard to imagine, yes, but oh-so-worth it!!!

  • Rosanna Penner-Sauereisen

    Those are all great ideas! I also get up early in the morning, though not as early as you. I don’t actually have to leave the house early in the morning, but I do homeschool my children so I need to ready for them.

  • Great tips, especially the breakfast one. I have little kids (and you know they are balls of energy as soon as the sun is up) and I have noticed what helps with them, when they are bombarding me with a mile a minute speeches, is to brush my teeth while the coffee is brewing. I know we are supposed to always do that anyways, but … lol
    good post, love it.

    https://simplesummit.blogspot.com/2017/04/simple-kids-honest-feeding-story.html

  • Talisa Garbo

    I co-sign stretching first. My muscles definitely need it first thing in the morning. Water in the morning as well. Whenever I skip that and have coffee first I regret it. Water is a must in the morning.

    • I never even realized how much stretching and water first thing help! It seems to get my blood flowing and signals to my body that it’s time to start the day.

  • kiki

    Great ideas! I’m back into Breakfast again and I’ve found some easy breakfast foods too which helps. I need to start on the water thing first thing in the AM!

    • That’s the thing- breakfast HAS to be easy! If you have to be somewhere, it’s way too much trouble to cook a 5-course meal from scratch!!!

  • Music really does affect us! Crazy, isn’t it?

  • Music is always a welcome addition. Stretching is a must for me!

  • Sarah Geringer

    This is a great list! Stretching is something I enjoy but haven’t made part of my morning routine. I’ll take it up this week. Visiting from #coffeeforyourheart.

  • Esha

    Great post. I love Mornings and usually set the alarm 20 minutes before I am supposed to be up so I get that 20 minutes of fake Snooz time 😃 Strongly believe in having a good breakfast in the morning to kick off the day 🙂

  • Jenn Singer

    I love your post. I have a similar timeline but instead of making a hot meal, I spend my time nagging the kids to get ready. Maybe if i got up an extra 20 mins, I’d be able to do both!

  • Great suggestions here. I agree about hitting the snooze. It’s a miserable way to start your day! For me, the most important thing I do is read my Bible. It makes all the difference!

  • I need to implement the stretching first thing. I love to go to bed early to get up early. If I don’t go to bed early, I could get the same amount of sleep if I sleep in, but I feel tired. My problem is when my family members keep me up past my bedtime for various reasons. Having four little kids makes it difficult, but I try. I’ve heard that drinking water helps you wake up faster than coffee. I think your point on leaving calm and collected helps us not be stressed, and stress makes our bodies tired. Then we want more sleep. It can be a vicious cycle.

    • You’re exactly right about going to bed early when you can. But I can imagine how hard that is with little ones!

      There are many nights that I try to talk myself into staying up just a little while longer, but I know I will regret it the next day. It’s just not worth it if you can help it. <3

  • I LOVE these two tips – reading something positive and turning off your phone notifications.

    This post was super well thought out! You gave some great tips that I’ve never read before – and I read a lot lol. This actually kinda inspired me to write my own post about easy ways to wellness hack your morning routine! ❤

    • Oh, I’m so glad you’re inspired! Can’t wait to read your post!

      Yeah, the phone notification thing hit me hard one day when I realized how much time I was wasting texting while I was getting ready. You don’t realize it until you’re walking out the door 10 minutes later than you’d planned. <3

  • First of all, the picture of that coffee is what made me click right away 😂 It’s so tempting. and second of all, hands down one of the most helpful morning routine tips. I barely have a morning routine and this can actually help me. Most of my time get sucked down by me trying to get ready for work. And since I don’t have an exact time frame to follow, I usually get stuck in traffic because I get out of the house a little later 😢

    http://www.annewonders.com

    • Haha, the picture of the coffee!!! You’re the best!!! (note to self, always use an image of coffee!)

      I hope you can start implementing some of these things! Little habits turn into big changes, and mornings are super important!

  • I love these tips, especially the one about reading something positive – that really helps set the tone for a productive & happy day 🙂

    – Kristen
    http://www.sophisticatedgal.com

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  • Kileen

    Great tips! I’d have to adjust it a bit with getting kids off to school but implementing a few of these would be great. Thank you for sharing at Ravenwould.

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  • Caitlin Edwards

    I’m usually pretty good about getting up early. In the past month or so I’ve been hitting snooze. I’m hoping to change that habit again soon!

    My mornings usually start with at least a half hour work out so it can be super hectic if I hit snooze.

    • thiskathryngirl

      Ooh, snooze is the bad guy! He always fools us into thinking he’s trying to help us, but he isn’t! lol! Thanks for stopping by! <3

    • I’m super impressed that you work out in the mornings! I used to get up at 4:45 to do that, but these days I work out in the afternoons! <3

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