Your morning routine doesn’t have to consist of a 5am spin class followed by a protein shake and reading the news in order to be considered a “good” morning routine.
The best morning routine is one that energizes you and prepares you for the day ahead. For some of us, working out in the morning just isn’t the right way to go, as lunchtime or evening workouts can be more effective for night owls and people with different internal rhythms. The key is discovering the morning routine that truly works for you.
So, here are some alternative morning routine ideas that are different than the “norm,” but could be the best way for you to start your day:
Go on a walk with a loved one or pet. Take your dog on a walk and enjoy some sunshine! Get some vitamin D first thing in the morning, and enjoy some time outside. Get your significant other to come with, and kick-off the day with some good conversation and a brisk walk.
Listen to an audiobook. If you have a long commute, listen to an audiobook or podcast in the car. This can be a great way to get in some “reading” if your goal is to read more this year and feel like you never have time to sit down with a good book.
Have a getting ready dance party. Pump up the volume and enjoy your favorite music as you get ready in the mornings — there’s no reason why you can’t have some fun during your mornings!
Walk to a neighborhood coffeeshop. Instead of making coffee at home, take a stroll to a neighborhood coffeeshop. Fresh air and fresh lattes are a great way to get energized and work in a little bit of brisk walking.
Wake up early and spend some time in nature. If you live near the beach, wake up early and take a stroll on the boardwalk while enjoying your coffee. If hiking’s your thing, find a trail and go for a sunrise hike.
Do something creative. While your morning coffee or tea brews, do some sketching or creative writing first thing in the morning. Even just a few minutes of an activity like this can help you strengthen your creative thinking muscles and prime you for being able to find creative solutions during your workday.
Add to a vision board. Dedicate a bulletin board or even just a poster board to be your “vision board” — a collage of images, clippings, or quotes that inspire you and help you visualize the future you want to create for yourself. Every morning, add something new to your vision board. You can even use Pinterest for your vision board, pinning virtual inspiration for your ideal future. This is a great way to stay forward-focused, and keep you inspired even if you’re having a tough time at work or feel stuck.
Get organized with a journal or planner. If you have a particularly hectic schedule, you can achieve some peace of mind by spending part of your morning routine sketching out how you’re going to use your time today. By identifying priorities and assembling a to-do list for the day, you can help de-clutter your mind and figure out what absolutely needs to be done today. Scheduling your day — including mundane tasks, like running errands after work — can help cut down on decision fatigue and help you know exactly what you’re going to accomplish in what timeframe.
Bake a cake, watch a movie or play a game. Who says you need to wait until the weekend or a vacation to enjoy your favorite activities? Get up early and do the things that make you truly happy. By prioritizing activities that give you joy, you can coast through the day on the positive vibes created.
Designing the Perfect Morning Routine
The perfect morning routine isn’t about how many calories you can burn before work, it’s about finding some mental clarity and happiness to start your day off on the best note possible.
Use your morning as an opportunity for some self-care: don’t let anyone dictate the best way for you to use your time or how you should structure these moments of peace and kindness.