If there is one thing i have learned over the years it’s that we all need to learn to manage ourselves. Yes, that’s right, learn to manage your person. You will not be able to manage any other relationship until you can manage the most important one of all, the one with yourself. There are so many aspects to this and as you probably guessed, every single person is going to face their own challenges. I believe if we could all create a morning routine that was a little bit healthier and with purpose, our daily challenges, believe it or not, may seem a little less daunting.
So here are a few things, non-negotiables, part of my day that truly make everything else run a little smoother.
1- Wake up. No, I don’t get a gold star for simply opening my eyes. But I do not ever, wake up hit snooze 5 times scroll through my social media and then jump outta bed at the last minute and run out the door. I leave myself at least 1 hour before I have to leave the house. I do not press snooze more than once and yes, sometimes this takes a little more motivation to leave the coziness of my bed, but I have a little conversation with myself and get over it and get on with my day.
2- Water. Before you have coffee. Every morning a glass of water with pink himalayan sea salt and fresh lemon juice. Did you know that most of us are chronically dehydrated? So how would it make sense to as soon as you wake, down a cup of Folgers and start the day with dehydration? I am not asking for you to give up your delicious coffee. Just have some water first.
3- No social media for at least the first 30 min – 1 hour of your day. This thing that we are all slightly addicted to. It’s a habit, and often a waste of precious time – especially in the morning. I use it for work and personally. But it can wait. I don’t want anything in the morning distracting me from what needs to be done first to help start me off on the right track. So I make sure I do not ever lie in bed scrolling and pressing snooze. Social media comes out when I am done my morning rituals and if I have some extra time before I head out for the day.
4- Breakfast. I personally never got on the whole fasting train. I don’t disagree with it, it just isn’t my thing. I eat whole foods, I eat when I am hungry and I need fuel to train. I try to get my yoga practice or workout in in the morning. This means I need a breakfast that includes fat, and protein to get started. This also means I am up early enough so that I can digest my food before I work out. Everyone is different, but this is what works best for me. I have been on an eggs and avocado kick for a while, it gives me enough energy without feeling too full and gives me proper fuel for the day. Avoid sugar, at all costs – but especially in the morning.
5- Move. Get outside. Whatever you love to do. Walk, run, bike, yoga, weights. Just move your body. You don’t need to train like a maniac, but you do need to move your body. And I get it, the Canadian winters don’t always make it that appealing to get outside, but even a quick walk with the dog or to your local coffee shop will do you more good than you realize.
So there it is, 5 things that help me get a better start to the day. Most are very simple, obvious healthy choices, but these small things make a huge difference in what the rest of my day looks and feels like. Starting with lemon water and a proper breakfast for example – I am not dehydrated and I have eaten a proper meal. In turn, I have more energy for my workout and my brain actually functions better. I start my day by not looking at my phone. This way I don’t get sidetracked first thing. I can get clear on what my day is going to look like without the added distraction. Afterall, I have the entire day to have distractions thrown at me and social media can be a waste of precious morning time.
Waking up on time, another no brainer right? Sure, but this also means that I have given myself enough time so there is no rushing around the house, or out the door. This will make that person that cuts you off in traffic a little less stressful and the need to run a red light less tempting, you may actually enjoy your commute into work. Imagine that?
Movement, pretty simple foIks. I took time to move my body in some way, time for myself. In turn I have more energy for others, and in my job this is key.
So clearly, I encourage morning ritual. Why? Because I have been that functioning-on-4-hours-of-sleep, run-out-the-door, coffee-in-hand, just-make-in-time-to-work person. It has taken me a long time to learn how to manage myself, and I can tell you from my own experience that learning this has been a huge player in my success both personally and professionally. So I encourage you to give it a try, to make it your own, and see what shifts for you. Thanks for reading and I would LOVE to hear your tips on what your rituals look like!