I made a big commitment to myself all the way back in March. I changed my morning alarm from 6:30am to 5:30am. I wasn’t sure if I could make this new morning change work, but I wanted to try it. Now, months later, I am really starting to enjoy my morning routine!
My goal with this new commitment was to force myself to bed earlier and to have time in the morning to start my day off on the right foot. So far this had been great and I’m no longer starting each morning with that rushed feeling. I wanted to share my favorite parts of my new routine with you all so you can get inspired to set your intentions for each day.
1. Wake up earlier. As I mentioned above I moved my wake up time up an hour (which seemed incredibly intimidating). I’ve never been a good morning person so spending more of my morning hours out of bed and moving sounded terrible, but I knew it would improve a lot of things so I promised to give it a try. One of the worst ways to start the day is rushed. I find that if I start my day rushing, I feel like I never get caught up. This might not be true, but if you can eliminate that strain, why not do it?
2. Morning meditation. I downloaded a few different meditation apps, hoping to help with my anxiety. So far I’ve been very pleased! While I haven’t quite been able to get my routine down to mediate every day, I am working at it, and I feel the difference when I skip my mediation. During the warmer months, I like to take my morning meditation outside, and often don’t follow any sort of guide. Instead I close my eyes and feel the warmth of the sun come over me and listen to the birds. You don’t have to make it fancy, just try sitting still and paying attention to your body for 2-3 minutes to start.
3. Tea! I love my tea. I was told early on, based on some of my medical history that drinking coffee may be out of the question for me, so I was never in the habit of having a early cup of something warm to start my day. But for the past 5 years or so I’ve been enjoying a morning cup of green tea (my favorite has lemongrass in it!). It’s a great way to wake up easily (yes, it does have caffeine) and warm my body. Giving myself time in the morning to enjoy my tea makes it feel special. And having time to make a second cup if I want it is the best!
4. Catching up on my podcasts. I follow quiet a few podcasts and sometimes I get behind. In the mornings when I wake up I start with my news podcast (NPR’s Up First). It’s short, sweet and gives me the run down without making my feel drained. Since it only lasts about 11 minutes I like to pick another podcast to play while I finish getting ready and enjoy my breakfast. I can pick whatever I want to listen to that day whether it’s a murder podcast, fantasy football, fitness based, or history I can pick what I want each day.
5. Having time for breakfast. Before I started waking early, I was eating the same breakfast nearly every day: brown rice cake, organic peanut butter and a piece of fruit. I loved it, but some days I just wanted to make something different. Now that I have an extra hour to prepare for the day I can make something fancy (think omelette) or simple (think oatmeal). I have time to cook and egg or chop some fruit for a smoothie. I love the flexibility I gave myself here.
Overall, I’ve been thrilled with my change of schedule. That’s not to say I haven’t spent a few mornings pressing snooze and rushing to work, but more often then not I am waking with my alarm and starting my day at the leisurely pace I like. On weekends I like to sit with a small breakfast, cup of tea and a good book and start my day slowly. While I don’t always have time to dive into a book on week days, I still am able to start each day with that same feeling of relaxation and inspiration.
What is your morning routine? What do you love? What do you want to change?