Somehow moving back to West Virginia has turned me into (more of) a morning person. Six months ago I would have laughed in your face if you told me that was going to happen. My bed and I? We were in a pretty torrid love affair and I had no intentions of breaking it off. Once we got settled into our new place I found myself waking up with the sun, excited about cooking breakfast, and enjoying longer more fulfilling days. Sometimes. I mean, still not all the time. I’ll never be a morning person, per se. I’ve just learned to not completely hate them. Funny how that happens, huh?
Now I find myself waking up earlier and having the best mornings of my life. I’ve found a routine that works for me and that I actually look forward to. My days are more productive and even though I’m waking up earlier, I feel more rested. I credit all of it to the 7 little changes I made to my morning routine.
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- Wake up to the sun (or fake it if you have to) – The sunrise streams right through our master bedroom window and hits the bed right across the pillows. I crack the window blinds just a bit before going to bed in order to allow the light in. It slowly brightens our room (and my pillow) which wakes me with the sun. It’s much gentler than a blaring alarm and feels far more natural. I still set my alarm as a backup but I almost never sleep until it goes off. If you don’t get natural morning sun you can fake a sunrise alarm and get the same benefits.
- Indulge in (limited) social media – There are thousands of people out there telling you to avoid social media in the morning but I’m telling you to stop listening to those people. I hop on social media first thing in the morning and it works great for me. I check to see what’s trending on Twitter in case a big news story broke. I’ll browse through Instagram to see what’s going on with my friends and others I follow. Then, I start my day. I limit social media to 15 minutes and it’s fabulous.
- Maintain flexibility in your schedule – Who are you people that wake up and run off to a 5am yoga class? I applaud you although I could never live amongst you. Waking up and immediately having a place to be does not set me up for a blissful morning. Like, not at all. If that works for you, do it. If it doesn’t, maintain flexibility and find something that does work for you. I’ve opted to do this Good Morning Sunshine yoga class with PraDeep Teotia because it’s flexible and I can do it on my time. You can also forgo yoga or a full work-out in favor of a short walk or even basic stretching if that’s what makes you feel good about yourself and the day ahead.
- Eat…whatever – There are mornings I wake up and feel so energized I whip up waffle sandwiches with fried eggs and avocado as well as a side of cinnamon apples. Other mornings I wake up and lazily grab a scone from a pile I made 3 days ago. I also stopped caring. The important thing is to eat a breakfast and there’s no sense in stressing over what kind of breakfast you’r eating. No one is giving out awards for “Best Breakfast Eater” and it doesn’t deserve to be stressed over first thing in the morning.
- Give yourself an indulgence – If you could reward yourself with a 5-minute indulgence in the morning, how would you do it? Would you watch an episode of your favorite guilty-pleasure TV show? Have an extra cup of hot coffee? Sneak an extra glazed scone? Try a new make-up look? Whatever it is, occasionally reward yourself with something just for you and you’ll learn to look forward to this special alone time.
- Have a few go-to looks – Ok, so my go-to look is jeans, a cotton tee, and ballet flats but it works for me. It’s fuss-free, super comfortable, and convenient while I’m working from home and dealing with dogs. There are mornings I feel like investing in getting styled for the day but there are plenty of other mornings where I want something hassle-free. On those hassle-free mornings I have go-to looks I can grab, put on, and feel great. No stress. No pressure.
- Make your bed – Yes, I’m serious. I’ve mentioned it before but making the bed helps put me at ease for the rest of the day. It acts as a visual confirmation that sleep time is over (as sad as that is) and it’s time to move on with the rest of your day. It doesn’t take but maybe 2 minutes so it’s a simple thing to cross of your to-do list.
So what’s the story morning glory? Any other good morning tips you’d like to add? Tweet me @ashleyfromhp or drop them below.