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  • Lacrystal Parker

How to Create a Morning Routine You’ll Actually Stick To

You’ve probably heard that a healthy breakfast is one of the most important parts of your morning routine — and that’s because everything that you eat in the morning will set you up to tackle the day ahead. But this notion doesn’t end with your morning meal. Everything you do in your morning routine will set the tone for the rest of the day. So, if a successful morning is the catalyst that you need to achieve your goals, then ensuring that your morning is productive is paramount. But, how can you ensure that your morning is successful? Honestly, there isn’t an exact science to it — everybody is different. (Sorry about that.) The key to having a successful, productive morning, is finding what works best for you, and making sure that you’re doing it consistently. Create a morning routine that works for you, and stick to it. Why is a Morning Routine Important? It doesn’t matter if you regard yourself as a morning person or a night owl, we all need to wake up at some point. And we all wake up differently too — everybody has their own quirks and things that they prefer to do during their waking hours. But, the harsh reality is: some of those quirks could be hampering your success. Setting your alarm 15 minutes early so you can snooze a little bit before you wake up? Skipping breakfast because you “don’t have time”? Skimping on your morning workout because you’ll “do it later”? If you want to be a successful, you need to get ahead of the game. And that requires hard work, dedication, and even some sacrifices. While that extra 15 minutes might seem insignificant in the grand scheme of things, you need to look at the bigger picture. If you spend 15 minutes snoozing every day of the year, how much time are you missing out on? 15 mins x 365 = 5475 minutes. That’s 91.25 hours (and almost 4 full days). Now think about what you could do with that time. How much more could you achieve if you woke up after your first alarm? Not to mention that snoozing is actually bad for your sleep So, if you want to ensure that you’re setting yourself up for success, a morning routine is essential. Your morning routine will be a set of rules that are a constant in your life. They’re chosen by you, to make sure that you’re optimizing your time.

How to Set a Morning Routine Longevity really is key when it comes to your morning routine — I’d suggest that you choose the things you can imagine being a constant in your life. So pick out some morning routine ideas from the list below that you think could slot in seamlessly for your morning ritual, and stick to them. 1) Start Your Morning Routine the Night Before

My first piece of advice is simple. Get started with your morning routine before you even go to sleep. This might sound like a strange tip, but hear me out. Life isn’t perfect, and there are tons of things that can disrupt you when you wake up. Maybe you’re about to leave for your morning workout and you find out that your car has a flat tyre. Maybe your kid doesn’t feel well and they need you to take them to the doctors before you leave for work. Or maybe you didn’t get a good night’s sleep and are feeling sluggish at the start of the day. That’s life. These things are bound to happen at some point, and they’re going to need to be taken care of. But if you’re already pushed for time in the morning because you forgot to take your clothes out of the drier, or prepare your lunch the night before, your morning routine will be disrupted. So, try and get started with your morning routine before you go to sleep the night before. Let’s be honest — you probably don’t like waking up. Heck, I don’t. But if you can prepare for your morning before you go to sleep, those first steps out of your bed are a little less daunting. You can even start small too — pick out a few clothes that you want to wear for tomorrow and you’ll have one less thing to worry about. Once you’ve incorporated these little tricks into your morning routine, you can start adding preparing more and more things before you fall asleep. With a few essentials taken care of the night before, watch how much easier the next morning becomes. 2) Set One Alarm and Stick to It

Snoozing your alarm for an extra 10 minutes sleep every day might seem like a harmless trait, but like I mentioned above, you could end up wasting several days a year with this habit. But you haven’t even read the worst part yet. It turns out that those extra minutes you spend in bed whilst you’re snoozing your alarm are actually harmful to your sleep cycles. So, snoozing your alarm every day before you wake up really does more harm than good. It offers little to no value to you, who is striving for success, so it’s time to cut this habit out of your morning routine. Set an alarm and stick to it. Get into the habit of waking up and getting up when you hear it. It might be tough at first, but you’re an entrepreneur — you can do anything you put your mind to. 3) Eat Right: Don’t Skimp Out on Breakfast

It’s true what they say: breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. But, why? Well, you need to energy if you want to tackle the ambitious goals that you’ve set for yourself, so a balanced breakfast should always be part of your morning routine. I always like to think of my body like I think about a car. If I noticed that I was almost out of gas before I set off from home, I’d rush to the nearest gas station to fill up my tank. Without gas, my car won’t be able to continue moving forward. And it’s the exact same with my body — I need to put in the right amount of fuel (food) so that I can continue moving forward as an entrepreneur. So if you wouldn’t skimp out on fuel for your car, why would you skimp out on fuel for your body? You also need to make sure that you’re putting the right food into your body too — ditch the sugary cereals and opt for something like porridge and a healthy smoothie instead. Take the time during your morning routine to make sure that you’re eating a healthy, balanced breakfast. You’ll find that you’re more efficient throughout the day, especially during your peak hours, after you’ve “filled up your tank”. 4) Plan Your Day Out

Let’s be honest, as an entrepreneur there are a ton of tasks that you’ll need to take care of during your day. And if you wake up in the morning facing a huge list of stuff which you need to deal with, how do you know where to start? It’s like the saying goes: “By failing to prepare, you’re preparing to fail.” Incorporate a slot into your morning routine just to plan out your daily tasks. Use some time during your morning routine to think about what you’re going to achieve, and how you’re going to do it. It can be big tasks, or it could be something small, but if you’re constantly moving forward, you can’t go too wrong. It’s also a great idea to tackle any thought-intensive tasks during the mornings, and work with your circadian rhythms. Give it a try — I can speak from personal experience and say that adding some time to plan in the morning boosted my productivity tenfold. 5) Journal in the Morning

Self-reflection is such an important part of a productive morning ritual. With so many things going on at once, it can be really difficult to step back and assess how you’re feeling, how everything is going, and analyze how successful you’ve been. That’s why I recommend incorporating some time into your morning routine for journaling. Grab a pen and some paper (or your computer) and just write. I like to start by writing my main goal — just so I’m reminded every morning about what I’m working towards. Then I move onto my achievements from yesterday, and think about what I could have done to better my output. That’s it — it’s something in my morning routine which only really takes a few minutes, but I believe that it’s really good to be critical with yourself, and assess how you’re performing. You’ll also be able to look back at your performance after a period of time and you’ll have a diary of how far you’ve come, the troubles that you’ve faced, and written proof that you can get over your troubles. 6) Get Moving

Get your blood (and your endorphins) flowing at the start of the day with a morning workout. Trust us, you’ll feel full of energy and ready to tackle the day ahead, no matter how hard it is to get out of bed. A workout is difficult, and you’ll feel a great sense of accomplishment after you’ve finished. Knowing that you’re up and out there before everybody else, and that you’ve accomplished something so early, will really spur you on to go ahead and succeed with the rest of your tasks throughout the day. If you’re not used to working out, start off slow and build your way up — you’ll still feel the same sense of accomplishment. This is a staple in my personal morning ritual, and I’m sure it’ll help you to become more productive too. 7) Take a Cold Shower

I know what you’re thinking, but no, I’m not crazy. Yep, a cold shower is actually part of my morning routine. Trust me on this one — there’s nothing sadistic about it. After a cold shower in the morning you’ll feel so energized and alive that you’ll wonder why you were ever taking hot showers in the first place. Still not sold on cold showers? Well, there are also many proven medical benefits to taking a cold shower which may sway your opinion. You might not like the cold shower at first, but add it to your morning ritual and make sure you stick with it for a few days. Create a Morning Routine That Suits YOU There’s a ton of morning routine ideas that you can add to create a successful morning ritual that’ll set boost your productivity levels and set you up for the day ahead. Just Google it and you’ll find tons of results claiming to be the magic trick. But here’s the real magic — the only thing that matters is to come up with a morning routine that suits you. Then commit to it. As every motivational speaker says, the best time to get started on a new habit is right now. (But hey, we’ve probably missed the boat on that one.) So delete all those extra alarms from your phone, lay out your work clothes, and pack your gym bag. We’ll start tomorrow.

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