Do you struggle to get out of bed in the morning? Maybe you hit the snooze button several times before dragging yourself out of your nice, warm bed, or maybe you sleep through your alarm altogether. I’ll admit, I’m not really much of a morning person. Waking up to this cold, rainy Oregon weather makes me want to burrow under my covers and stay there until summer.
Since that’s not exactly realistic, I decided that I needed to find some easy ways to start my day with energy and excitement. My morning routine consists of these 5 surprisingly simple habits with amazing benefits:
1. A Simple Stretch
A simple stretching routine first thing in the morning will help you feel revitalized and refreshed and get the blood pumping throughout your body. Make sure your stretches are gentle since your body is not warmed up. You don’t even have to get out of bed if you don’t want to! Do what feels best to you.
2. A Large Glass of Water
Once you’ve stretched, drink 16 ounces of water. Your body is dehydrated after going several hours with no fluids, so this will help to get you back on track. Dehydration is a common cause of fatigue, so it will also give you a nice energy boost. Try keeping a cup of water by your bed so it’s ready for you.
3. A Moment of Gratitude
Next, take a few minutes to write down some things for which you’re grateful. Research shows that taking the time to do this on a regular basis will improve your physical and psychological health, build self-esteem, increase resilience, and even help you sleep better. (For more information, check out this article).
4. A Heartfelt Compliment
How often do you say something nice to yourself? Chances are it’s not often enough. Take a moment to look at yourself in the mirror and give yourself a heartfelt compliment about anything you want, big or small. It may feel funny at first, but I guarantee it will help you start your day on a positive note.
5. A Personal Permission Slip
What is one thing you’d really like to do today? Take a long lunch? Sing in the car even if someone might hear you? Whatever it is, write yourself a permission slip to do it. It should be something realistic and easily accomplished ensure success. (In other words, you probably shouldn’t give yourself permission to quit your job and move to Hawaii). Doing this gives you something to look forward to and the ability to do it without regret or guilt. This idea was inspired by the works of Brene Brown, the author of The Gifts of Imperfection and Rising Strong (among others).
Try one of these techniques or better yet, try them all! Take the ones that work best for you and create your own morning routine. It’s a small investment of time that will reward you with a multitude of benefits.