Given how much of a morning-person and routine-lover I am, to think I didn’t have a morning-routine surprised me. And then to realize how much more I could possibly enjoy my mornings if I actually used my time wisely rather than mindlessly…
I think “morning routine” is a phrase thrown around almost as frequently as is “wellness”, and that’s fine, but it’s important to remember that your morning habits don’t need to mirror another person’s. So, when reading through mine, please keep that in mind. I scrolled through Pinterest (are you surprised?) for some guidance when creating my own (is that hypocritical of me?) and found a few blogs that inspired me. Using a notebook I’ve already dedicated to calculations from clinical lab and scribbles of recipes - I’m so organized, I know - I asked myself these questions, which helped me organize my thoughts into the categories you’ll see later in this post.
How do my weekday mornings look different than my weekend mornings?
It’s important to note that every morning is an early one around here. To sleep until 6 AM is to accomplish “sleeping in”. During the week, I work Tuesday and Thursday mornings, so I’m up at 4 AM and out the door 20 minutes later. By 9 AM, I’m already in class and ready to roll through the rest of the day. However, these mornings leave absolutely no time for the morning routine I would absolutely love to apply to every day. That’s okay, though - it’s just where life is at this point. On Monday and Wednesday, class starts at 7:40 AM, but by that time, I’ve already been up for at least 2 hours, so there is definitely time for the morning routine on these days and knowing that I’ll have that time makes me extra excited to go to bed and wake up the next day. Friday mornings are whatever I want them to be. Lately, they’ve been the same - set no alarm, wake up when my body wakes me up, and get out of bed when I’m bored of laying there. Make coffee, drink water, and then check in with how I’m feeling to guide what I want to do next. With how hectic these weeks have been, Friday mornings are my mornings for relaxing. I’ve been reading Timothy Keller’s The Reason for God and curling up on the couch with a cup of coffee in one hand and that book in the other has been just wonderful. Saturday morning is another morning at work, so it’s a 4 AM wake-up call. Sunday is just like Friday, thankfully, so I have the freedom to spend my time however I want, but again, it’s usually with my coffee, my book, and me on the couch.
What are some things I don’t want to do in the morning?
I do not want to scroll through social media within the first 30 minutes of waking up (and I still question why I sometimes do that). I also do not really want to talk to anyone, so I keep my phone Airplane Mode from about 30 minutes before bed to whenever I feel ready to communicate with the outside world in the morning. In this season of life, I do not want to workout in the morning because I want to give my body a stress-free environment to wake itself up whenever possible. I do not want to wash dishes, and that might sound weird, but reminding myself of the joy in waking up to a clean kitchen encourages me to wash dishes at night. I do not want to start working on homework immediately.
What are some things I do want to do in the morning?
I want to enjoy my coffee, sipping on it with a peaceful mind in a clean and quiet kitchen. I want to read, be it the latest news or my current book. I want to journal, to sort through my thoughts and set some simple intentions for the day ahead. I want to stretch and breathe - just a little bit of light movement to get some oxygen flowing through my body and into my brain.
Now that I know which days I can apply this morning routine to…
What are my “to-do’s” in the morning?
In other words, what are a few tasks that are absolutely necessary in the beginning of the day (on the days when I’m not working)? What must I get done before I move on to class?
Make coffee. Yes, it’s a must.
Eat breakfast. Duh.
Get dressed and ready for the day.
What are some "extra to-do’s”?
Like, what are some things I can do if time permits? In no particular order…
Emails. I always wake up to at least five.
Last-minute studying for my 7:40 AM Clinical Nutrition class. You would probably need to squeeze in some review, too.
Last-minute blog things, like sending out an email to subscribers (are you one? you should be), editing some pictures, browsing some inspiration for recipes, and the like.
Clean and organize my room. I am the person who tends to get home at the end of the day and toss everything on my bed or the floor, leaving it looking like a mini tornado ran through.
And if time permits…
What are some “happy things” I can do in the morning? Things that I enjoy doing, but don’t necessarily prioritize over homework, studying, meal-prepping, etc.
Browsing various websites, blogs, magazines, and cookbooks for interesting recipes to try.
Working out, if my body is feeling it.
Working on the blog - planning recipes and other posts, cleaning things up, etc.
*These usually happen on Friday and Sunday mornings because I don’t usually have any commitments until around 9 AM, and have the rest of the day to tackle my to-do list.
And now it’s time to create! Use these priorities you’ve just set to organize how you want to go about your morning. Start with the highest priority - what is the first you want to see, hear, do in the morning? For me, I want water and coffee. I do not want to answer texts or phone calls. I want to read and be in my own thoughts. And once I’ve given myself time to do so, armed with a hot cup of Joe, I’m ready to move on - emails, homework, studying, blog things, etc.
So, there you have it! I hope you found this interesting and helpful in creating your own routine to start your day off on the right foot. I’ll compile a few more posts with some encouraging affirmations, journal ideas, etc.
Questions? Comments? Thoughts? Leave them below or send them along in an email! Thanks for reading!