1. Assess Your Current Mornings
Ask yourself how you would like to feel in the morning. More energised? More productive? Calmer? Next, reflect on what might be getting in the way. Is it reaching for your phone as soon as you open your eyes? Finally, imagine what activities might foster your desired morning state: perhaps it’s swapping Facetime for a morning jog or journalling for 10 minutes with a cup of tea. These tips will significantly improve your mental health wellbeing.
Write down your morning goals and share them with a partner or friend to increase your chances of transforming them into reality.
2. Have Something to Look Forward to
Once you’ve determined your goals, it’s time to make them appealing! For example, plan a new route or playlist for that morning jog, or buy your favourite tea to savour while you journal.
Take a few minutes to write down three things you’re grateful for before going to bed each night. Research suggests that practising gratitude can increase well-being and positive emotions, making it easier to focus on the things we have to look forward to when we awake. Furthermore, practicing gratitude may improve sleep quality and duration, making mornings even less hazy!
3. Prep For Success
You may be thinking that mornings are hectic enough without trying to add something new or different to the mix. This is where a little planning goes a long way. For example, figure out that timer on your coffee maker or set out all the gear you need for that morning jog the night before, leaving less room for morning error.
If you have kids, get them involved in morning prep: have them pack their bags for school and set out their outfits before bed to help mornings run a little smoother.
Although exercise at any time of day is beneficial, studies have shown that starting our day with a bit of sweat has additional potential benefits. These include lowering blood pressure and helping us sleep more deeply at night.
Take your morning movement outdoors to soak up some natural light, which may enhance mood, alertness, and overall sleep quality by regulating the sleep/wake cycle.
5. Fuel UP
Although we’ve all heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, it often becomes a mundane—or even overlooked—part of the morning shuffle. Planning a nutritious and delicious breakfast can add new life to your morning, and it can help stabilize blood glucose levels throughout the day.
6. Healthy Sleep Habits
The best way to feel more energized in the morning is to improve overall sleep quality and duration. Making a habit out of getting good sleep will also improve your overall health—and your overall disposition.
For a more peaceful slumber, the US-based National Sleep Foundation suggests
- avoiding caffeine, alcohol, and certain types of food (for example, rich, spicy, or fried) close to bedtime
- limiting daytime naps to 30 minutes
- creating a bedtime routine and going to bed and getting up at approximately the same time every day
- making your bedroom a sleep haven (think quiet, cool, and comfortable!)