As I mentioned in my last post, my morning routine has evolved significantly over the last two years. Back then, I would wake up about an hour before work with the sole purpose to rise, get ready for work, and then be on my way. Now, my the purpose of my mornings has become filling my own cup before pouring into others. What I mean by that, is that I prep my morning in an attempt to be my best self when I arrive to work. I’ve learned that the best thing you can do in the first few hours of the day is invest in yourself, that way the rest of the day can be focused on investing in others.
There’s a few things I try to include into my morning routine each day which are inspired by the resources from the last post. I don’t always get them done, but try to as much as I can.
That’s the list. Nothing too complicated on it, but those are what I hope to get out of my mornings before I need to leave for work. I’ve added some of those over time. I didn’t start by getting all them done in the mornings.
The first step for me to have a better morning routine was just to wake up earlier. I previously had to be at work at 8, so I would wake up around 6:45/7. As I learned more about morning routines, I decided waking up at 6 would be my first goal. This meant I had time to work out in the mornings and still be ready at and work on time. Once that became a habit (over a few months), I decided to try and wake up even earlier to add some journaling or writing to my morning. This means I was waking up around 5:45. Once that became a routine, I tried to get up even earlier and so on. I’ve included a breakdown at the bottom of the post on what each of those different areas looks like for me currently.
Exercise – I try to work out about 30 minutes every morning. Sometimes it’s going on a walk, other times it’s yoga, or weights. It depends but this is a huge key to my day. Days when I don’t do some type of exercise in the mornings are mentally tougher than others.
Reading – Sometimes this is an audible book, other days it’s sitting and reading a book on leadership or personal development. Something I’ve more recently added is spending about 15-30 minutes reading the bible in the morning. I’m still working through the entire bible this year (the 90 day plan has become a 9 month plan), so that time allows me to read a few chapters in the morning.
Writing – What I write varies. It could be journaling in my Write the Word Journal, or writing a blog post. It could be just writing to process what I’m thinking or feeling or it could be writing out a prayer. It really depends on what I need out of writing that day.
Learning – I am recently really into podcasts. My favorites are Lewis Howes, Rachel Hollis, Brendon Burchard, and How I Built This. Depending on what I want to learn, I may check out new episodes on a podcast I don’t regularly follow. I also may listen to a sermon in the mornings. As I’m getting ready, I will just put out my phone on the counter and listen. If I don’t finish it, I’ll continue listening in my car on the way to work. I don’t do this every day but try to a few times a week.
Silence – I have done some guided meditation before but it hasn’t been something I’ve stuck with. Rather, I’ve learned how to sit in silence for a few minutes each morning and just be. Its usually only 5 minutes or so but that though still helps calm my thoughts or anxieties.
Breakfast – This can be a protein shake on the go, some eggs and spinach, or instant oatmeal. It depends what I”m in the mood for/what I have groceries for and what I make time for. But days without breakfast I get very hungry. I am not someone who needs a full 8 or 9 hours of sleep every night. If you are, then you should adjust your morning routine to best fit you and your body’s needs. I also don’t have kids. So again, adjust your routine for what fits in to you life where it’s currently at.
I personally need about 6-7 hours of sleep. Since I leave my house around 8 to get to work, this gives me about 3 hours prior to my commute to spend time doing things that are important to me and set me up well for the rest of the day.
My Morning Routine:
- 5:00 AM – Get up at first alarm (5-4-3-2-1)
- 5:05 AM – Make Bed
- 5:10 AM – Brush Teeth
- 5:15 AM – Read
- 6:00 AM – Write
- 6:30 AM – Work Out
- 7:15 AM – Get Ready For Work
- 7:50 AM – Make/Eat Breakfast
- 8:00 AM – Leave for Work
The above times are estimates of when I’m doing things in the morning. No day is exactly the same but this is what I hope to be doing around those times. The most important thing for me isn’t getting up and doing things at a specific time, but rather that I’m getting up and investing in something that helps me learn, grow, or brings me joy in the mornings. The same routine won’t work for everyone. If you want some more inspiration on a morning routine, check out my previous post if you haven’t already. There’s also a great website called My Morning Routine which allows you to see various people’s routines and sort them based on things they incorporate into their mornings.
If you want a morning routine but aren’t sure you’ll stick to it, the best advice I can give you is to start small. That’s what I did and the only reason I think this worked for me. Wake up 15 minutes earlier every few days. Then add something to your routine and practice that for 3 weeks. After that, try to add something else that’s new until it becomes a habit.
Now, I’m finally at the point where I love my mornings. Even though I’m still a night owl, the amount of joy I have in the mornings is incredible and certainly not an area where I thought I’d be.
“You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.”