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Learning how to create a morning routine is a good step in the right direction of improving your life for the better.
When you are interested in self-improvement and productivity, it’s unavoidable that you stumble upon morning and evening routines. Routines and improvement seem to be linked together like nothing else.
And I would say it’s good that it’s like that. A routine automates a part of your life and you don’t have to waste energy thinking about the tasks at hand.
This post is about learning how to create a morning routine and tips on how you can stick to it to set a good foundation for success.
I’m going to start with the evening routine because I find it’s the foundation of a successful tomorrow morning.
Before you create any routine for yourself, think about what’s important to you. Don’t just follow a routine from a famous person without thinking about it – this won’t get you where you want to be.
I have 3 pillars which I build my routine(s) on. Health, Knowledge, Relaxation. In the end, it’s really what is important to you.
Yours could look a whole lot different, but I suggest starting with these three pillars.
Now let’s hop right into it and find out how it looks in real life.
Find out how much time you need to sleep. For some people it might be 8 hours, for some, it might be 6. A good rule of thumb is to calculate in 1.5hour steps backward from the time you want to wake up. Every sleep cycle is around 1.5 hours long, this means if you want to wake up by 5 a.m. you should sleep by 9:30 p.m.
You might have a stressful day, and to get a good night’s rest is crucial to be ready for the next. Make it a habit to avoid screens at least an hour before bedtime. Screens emit blue light which makes your body feel it’s in the middle of the day. Blue light, or light in general, hinders your body to produce melatonin, a sleeping hormone, a Harvard study found out.
If you absolutely must use screens before bedtime install a blue light filter (Windows 10 has it natively!).
This is the evening routine I do (almost) every day.
8.00: Turn off all my screens, set my lights to a cozy and relaxing color.
8.00 – 8.15: Prepare coffee for the next day, lay out clothes, make warm water with a tablespoon of honey and apple vinegar
8.15-8.45: Read a book
8.45-9.00: Brush teeth, change for bed, do skincare
09.00-09.15: Read a few last pages in bed and then drift off into sleep
I created this simple routine just for myself. You read on many pages that you should do meditation, positive affirmations, journal, etc. This is not for me. I tried it, but it doesn’t feel right.
Do what makes you happy, if it’s to just sit and drink a glass of wine while listening to music – do it! Building a routine is just for you – you are the person to use it.
Now let’s see how you can create a morning routine – again, just for yourself.
It’s totally fine to do the same things you did the evening before again – this can simplify your morning routine. But I suggest you get in the habit to create something different because you want to signal your body to wake up and not to go to sleep again.
I always try to have my routines in line with my long term goals because that is the direction I want to head in life. But don’t sweat it – you don’t have to go crazy and write 1.000 words before you even drank your coffee.
Find my example morning routine here:
4.45: Wake up. I do that with a sunrise alarm clock (light starts to shine half an hour before my wake up time and get’s brighter the closer it’s to 4.45). One thing I really want you to do is: forget the snooze button. From now on, it’s non-existent.
These 5 minutes in the cozy warm bed give you the feeling of being groggy all day long. And in the end you want to feel energized, and not tired!
4.45-5.00: Change into my workout clothes, drink a big glass of warm water with a tablespoon of honey and apple vinegar (yes, it really tastes good!)
5.00-5.15: Drink my coffee while checking e-mails and listening to a 100 second summary of the news. I head out of the door by 5.15 to 5.20 and drive right to the gym.
Again, it’s 100% up to you how to create your morning routine. If it’s more important to you to meditate instead of going to the gym – do it.
Note: I try to keep this routine up on weekends and vacation days as well. If you sleep in 2 days of the week that’s around 30% of the week you are caving in. Let that sink in!
Doing these routines frees me from making decisions from easy tasks. Yes, deciding which pants you want to wear is a decision that depletes your willpower for the day, so I’d rather have it for the end of the day since it’s a simple decision!!
Other than that, it’s just a good thing to automate small tasks every day to make it a habit of doing them.
IMPORTANT NOTE: If you fail to do any part of your routine or an entire day – don’t skip the next day as well! Just get back in the saddle and go again! It is also totally fine to sleep in sometimes if that is what you need. But go again the next day!
These routines helped me greatly in sleeping better and getting up more rested. Having the workout in the mornings made me stick to them much more than having them in the evenings when I come home exhausted.
If you don’t have a good routine, and you are interested in improving your life, start with small, doable steps. Just wake up without snoozing for the beginning, if you managed to do that, you can build additional things on top of that. It is a solid foundation to start your improvement. Every step in the right direction is a good thing to do. If you want to improve in other areas as well, make sure to check out the LATEST POST section!
As always, feel free to give me feedback on this post – what are the routines and habits you are doing?
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