Morning time is when most of us have to be up for work or school; or at least that’s how we think of it. We are still half sleep on our journeys to productivity. Monday mornings we don’t even want to leave the bed, just dreading the entire work week. But have we even thought about why we feel this way? Mornings can make or break your day before it even begins. So here are five quick and easy rituals that can change your entire perspective on early mornings.
1. Go to Sleep Earlier, Wake up Earlier
According to TIME magazine, “The time of night when you sleep makes a significant difference in terms of the structure and quality of your sleep.” There are 90-minute cycles which our brain moves from deep, non-rapid eye movement (non-REM) sleep to REM sleep. Non-REM sleep occurs in the beginning of the night while REM dominates the hours closer to daybreak. Studies show that non-REM sleep is deeper than dream-infused REM sleep. Basically, if you go to sleep later you won’t be able to reach the full extent of non-REM sleep resulting in grogginess. Get your full eight hours and wake up a little earlier than normal so you won’t rush through these steps.
2. Do A Stretching Routine
It’s important to wake the body and muscles up along with your brain. Here’s a quick 5 minute stretch you can practice. Once these simple stretches become habit you can move on to yoga or morning exercises.
3. Drink a Healthy Green Smoothie
Contrary to belief, a good breakfast doesn’t mean a heavy one. We may begin our mornings trying to fill ourselves up so we won’t be hungry again until break time but…that will just slow you down. Nourish the body with a nice smoothie to boost your energy. Leafy greens like kale or spinach provide phytonutrients, fiber, and minerals. Here are a few smoothie recipes to give a try.
4. Meditate for a Few Minutes
The three previous steps should have you on a feel-good path already so find a comfortable spot. Developing your own style of meditation is important, find what works best for you. Decide on comfortable positioning, if you’d like music and clear your mind. Just a few minutes is enough to begin, you are preparing your mind for the day ahead of you.
5. Listen to Uplifting Music or Audiobook
Motivation is essential in the morning. Find music you think is inspirational or beautiful to get you in the right headspace. Audiobooks are also a good way to feed your mind with motivation at the top of the day. Remember, whatever you listen to may be stuck in your head so choose wisely.
These five tips can change your mornings for a lifetime if used as ritual. Some things that may throw you off course like morning news, a big breakfast, stimulants like coffee or energy drinks, sleeping in and negative people should be avoided. It’s important to stay focused on all things positive as you are trying to change your morning routine. Give these five rituals a try in the morning to see how much your day can change!