After doing my research on routines, I started putting mine to the test. It’s been over 2 weeks of a consistent morning routine, and I have to say, it’s kind of amazing how much more productive I am. Sure, I’ve had exhausting days where I still didn’t get everything done. But starting my day off right has made a big difference in not just my work life, but in my personal practices.
Before I got into my routine groove, I took some time to scour the internet for inspiration from others and to ask myself what I really wanted to include. An hour seems like a long time, but it goes by quickly. I wanted to make sure I could get through everything that I absolutely wanted to begin my day with. I wrote it out in my Notes app and tested it out. I made a few adjustments after the first two days, and I’m sure there will be more tweaks to come, but I now know what is important, and crucial, to me.
Without further ado, here is my morning routine:
Wake up. You can’t start your day without waking up! I allow myself a little bit of wiggle room, but typically I set my alarm for somewhere around 7, 7:15am and absolutely no later than 7:30am. Friday’s are my exception to the rule, but more on that later. After I turn off my alarm, I put my phone back down on my nightstand, keeping the first hour of my day 100% to myself.
Make my bed. Before this, I had already been in the habit of making my bed, but doing it first thing has made for a massive transformation. I don’t dawdle. I don’t waste time looking at my phone. Once it’s made, it’s made. And typically, Heidi will then saunter in and make herself comfortable.
A little movement/stretching. Before my meditation, I like to take a minute or two just to move my body. I’ve been loving a gentle forward fold using my bed. I might also throw in an easy twist or two. I try to listen to my body and give it what it wants.
Light a candle. This is a simple step that takes 2 seconds, but it helps me get in the zone for my soulful practices. I have a lot of matches lying around, so I’ve been using those up and the added smell has been soothing.
Meditate. I’ve been doing my best to keep up my practice after the 30 Day Meditation Challenge. During January, I noticed it was hard if I didn’t fit it in at the beginning of my day, so I decided it had to go into my routine. Depending on the day, my practice ranges from 8-15 minutes. This is one of the few times during my routine I allow myself to look at my phone, but it’s only to use one of my apps for the timer.
Pull a tarot card/journal. I am an amateur at tarot, but pulling a card a day has been a fun getting-to-know-you exercise. I have a journal next to my deck, so after I draw a card, I take a few moments to write down how it applies to my life, or how it might not. It’s nice having a record that I can go back to and make sense of something that was confusing at the time. That said, I know I want to start incorporating Morning Pages from The Artist’s Way into my routine soon, so this step might get swapped out for that.
Dry brush and shower. I must admit, I don’t shower every day. Usually it’s more like every other day. But on the days I do, I dry brush before I hop in. This is new to me, but my skin has been loving it!
Skincare/get ready for the day. After my shower, I go through my skincare routine, which usually consists of eye cream, moisturizer, sunscreen, and maybe mascara with a bit of Glossier Boy Brow. After I brush my teeth, I pick out my clothes and get dressed.
On the days I shower, this is usually the end of my allotted hour. I typically still have plenty of time before my first class, but if there’s something special about that day, at least I’m ready to run out the door if needed.
Make my to-do list. Before heading downstairs, I grab my bullet journal and write down my to-do list for the day. It only takes a couple of seconds, but it reminds my brain what I need to focus on.
Breakfast. Finally, it’s breakfast time! I’ve been switching things up lately, but I’ll usually decide what to eat based on how much time I have left. If it’s not much, which is usually on shower days, a yogurt bowl with fruit and granola is quick and easy. If I have more time, I love warming up apples with a bit of ghee, cinnamon, ginger, and pumpkin pie spice. I might put that with some yogurt too, or I’ll put it atop oatmeal.
Catch up on news and notifications. At this point I allow myself to pull out my phone. I read the news on TheSkimm. I check my social media notifications. I’ll watch a few Insta stories and read any emails I received in the night.
And then I’m ready for the day! By then, I usually have to head out for my classes, but if I still have time, I might start on my to-do list or read a few pages of my book. The best part of this routine is that I’m no longer running out the door just in the knick of time. I feel calm, cool, and collected as I head into my work day.
As I briefly mentioned, Friday’s are a little more compact. I have to get out the door before I would normally wake up, so I make sure to shower beforehand. I still make my bed, drink my water, go through my skincare/get ready, and eat breakfast. Typically though, I save my meditation for once I get to the studio. I like to leave early so I beat traffic and have time to do a 20-30 minute yoga practice and a few minutes of meditation once I get there. I’ve found this to make it less stressful for me because you never know what Atlanta traffic might be like.
That’s pretty much it! This might seem like a lot, but once I started remembering what happened next, it went smoothly. I go into my day having already accomplished my basic needs and the world becomes my oyster.
What do you include in your morning routine? Or if you don’t have one, what one thing would you want to do? Let me know!