I absolutely LOVE my morning routine
I do it nearly every morning, even on those days when I don’t have an early rise time.
I share this with you, not because I feel like my routine is better than others, I share this in celebration!!
I was NEVER a morning person.
I would reluctantly roll out of bed, hitting the snooze button until I was forced to get up, or be late for work.
On those days when hitting the snooze button wasn’t an option, I’d navigate my morning, sipping multiple cups of coffee, scrolling through my phone to see what the rest of the world was doing.
I’d feel: stressed, anxious, distracted, grumpy, rushed…BLAH!
Not the recipe for a kick-ass day for sure.
I stopped asking myself what I wanted to “do”, started asking myself how I wanted to “feel” instead.
I had a long history of following other people’s recommendations for a “good” morning routine. Things I thought I “should” do. Things like cross fit, affirmations, read, journal, etc…
While all these things are great, whenever anything arrived that made doing that routine even a little bit challenging ( ie..cloudy day, too much wine, hang nail), I would retreat to the warmth of my bed, never to be seen at 6am Pilates class again.
I started by making a list of how I wanted to feel: energized, happy, peaceful, calm, connected, excited (or at least hopeful), and strong.
I also made a list of how I didn’t want to do (or feel) in the morning: critical of myself , skip breakfast, feel rushed, make excuses.
I started with small changes, things I knew I could do for sure.
For example, I started drinking my morning coffee out of a cool mug. Usually something funny, but also inspiring. Something that made me smile when I saw it.
I also switched my lotions and shampoo. I purchased products that were good for the environment, in scents I adored.
I gave myself permission to explore morning workouts, based solely on how they made me feel. No frequency, distance or level of difficulty required.
If I did them for 10 minutes and I felt like that was enough, I celebrated myself, reminding myself how it made me feel, “I feel strong, I feel energized”, and checked the box for the day.
I started up a gratitude practice that contained just one simple reminder, “Every day is a gift, don’t take it for granted.”
I continued this process of trial and error until all the emotions that I wanted to start my day were achieved.
Because my morning routine felt so good, I wanted to do it more often.
Starting my day off feeling better resulted in some important changes in my day.
I was happier, more likely to engage with others.
I was more productive, made less errors.
I was less stressed, more patient when the inevitable challenges of life occurred.
Now many of you may be reading this and thinking, “but I love sleeping in, I don’t want to get up earlier”.
I’d like to offer you this…
Wake up, go to the mirror, look at yourself and ask:
“If today were my the last day, would I do what I’m doing?” – Steve Jobs
If you find yourself saying, “NO” to this question too often, it’s time for a change.