6 Ways to Develop an Effective Morning Routine

Chances are you are reading this because, let me guess, you want to develop an effective morning routine? I decided to do a bit of research...

Chances are you are reading this because, let me guess, you want to develop an effective morning routine? I decided to do a bit of research on how we can improve our AM rituals to be more energized throughout the day. If you're like me and the first thing you do when you wake up is check e-mails and social media then you are wasting valuable daybreak. 

Our willpower is its strongest in the morning. It's like we've refueled our bodies overnight with heavenly sleep and are now ready to use it. Of course, this means that our strength of will decreases during the day. Like a muscle, it can get fatigued and lose its vigor with each task we complete. We begin to lose focus, perceive tasks as being more difficult, and eventually just begin to exert ourselves less. Worry not because here are 6 simple ways to help you seize the day and finally begin to feel like you are an actual adult.

Create a To-Do List the Night Before
Creating a to-do list the night before, helps your mind keep those goals in the back burner. When you wake up, you can look over the list as a refresher. Adding too many tasks to your list will leave you feeling more stressed because you think you have to finish them all. Sometimes you may have a longer to-do list than other days but try to keep your tasks to a minimum (3-4 major goals). 

Get Enough Sleep
If you are sleep deprived you will experience "mild prefrontal dysfunction." You will be unable to regulate your emotions and attention easily because your mind is exhausted. Some people say that they can survive off of 6 or less hours of sleep but they are wrong! Research shows that even if you skip just one day of a 7-9 hour sleep regiment over the course of a few days, you will experience volatility in mood and difficulty in concentration. More sleep is better, to a certain extent.

When you meditate, you are training your brain to focus your mind and resist the urge to wander. Simply sitting upright in a distraction-free room and focusing on your breathing for 10 minutes can leave you feeling with a tremendous sense of accomplishment and a renewed strength of mind. That way you'll find it easier to stay on tasks and avoid giving in to potential interruptions.

Eat a Healthy Breakfast
Food is imperative to our survival and our energy levels. When we eat, we produce a chemical known as glucose. Glucose is basically the fuel you need to be focused and have that robust will power that is going to get you through the day. If you choose to munch on donuts and a Starbucks latte in the morning, you will feel a sugar-laced spike in energy immediately but you will eventually crash and burn. Keeping a low-glycemic diet keeps a constant stream of glucose in your blood. Lean proteins, nuts, fresh fruit, and vegetables are great sources of raw energy that keeps you at tip top shape.

Find Inspiration
Your motivation to accomplish your goals will fluctuate which is why it is helpful to have things in your workspace that inspire you to be your best. A work of art or a one-line quote can remind you why you are doing what you are doing.

Adjust Your Lighting and Temperature
According to a recent study by scientist Mirjam Muench, cortisol levels dropped significantly in people under artificial or poor lighting conditions than those with natural lighting. That means that if your room is dimly lit or lit by a lamp, you will begin to feel sleepier faster. One easy way to tackle this problem is to wake up earlier so you enjoy and bask in the morning natural light. The later we wake up, the less time we get to be in the sun.

Changing your bad habits takes time and effort. Everyone starts off as a novice. Try to incorporate these tips to your everyday morning routine for at least a week and you will notice dramatic improvements in the way that you think and the way that you feel. These tips may just be bare bones enough for them to work on most anyone, but some thrive on less than 6 hours of sleep or get their best work done at night. Experimenting with your morning routine is the best way to find what works specifically for you.

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