Nobody loves waking up to an alarm clock. Mornings can be pretty tough… Here are the five steps to create better morning and day.
If you're one of the people who taps the “snooze” button for several times before getting up, you must really hate mornings.
In general, I love mornings. And you can make them more likeable as well.
There are five simple steps that I do to make my morning great:
Step 1 to Better Morning: Go To Bed at a Reasonable Time
Creating a better morning actually starts the night before. If you asked me what's the number 1 ingredient in living a healthier and happier life, I wouldn't say it's eating only organic foods or exercising every day. I would say: Get enough sleep.
I know that if I don't sleep enough, or well enough, I get cranky, I'm unable to work, my workouts suffer and my cravings are all over the place.
Things that I do to get a good sleep:
- Make my room dark
- Use earplugs
- Do my best to read a book before passing out
- Take melatonin, if needed
I say I do my best to read because it doesn't always happen. I'm not going to lie, there are times when the last thing I do before the bed is finishing up work on my computer. But I can say that I'm not checking my phone anymore once I'm in bed. I used to, but not anymore.
Melatonin is a great help if you're struggling with sleep. It's a supplement, not a sleeping pill, so it's much milder (but still, take it only when you need to). I have bought several brands of melatonin before but nothing helped, until someone suggested me to try Thorne.
This one is really a lot better than anything else that I've tried before. It even let me sleep a good 5-6 hours on my last trip to Europe, which was magical, since I'm never able to sleep on a plane.
Step 2 to Better Morning: Drink a Lot of Water
Drinking 32 oz water first thing in the morning is something that I've been doing for almost ten years now. It started when I joined Weight Watchers, and while a lot of other things that I learned there weren't that great for my health, I'm happy that I picked up this habit.
I fill my Nalgene bottle up already the night before, add a slice of lemon and leave it on my nightstand. I don't like ice cold water (I just get a terrible brain freeze from too cold drinks), so room temperature works best for me. I drink the whole 32 oz as soon as I wake up.
This bottle is with me everywhere I go and I usually drink 3-4 bottles of water every day.
Step 3 to Better Morning: Walk
You probably knew this one is coming. What can I say, I love to take a 15-20 minute walk first thing in the morning. If you say that you don't have time for it, then–sorry but I don't believe you 🙂 Just set your alarm for 15 minutes earlier and go do it. It pays off, I promise.
If you're used to drive everywhere, you may not even know how different your neighborhood looks like when you walk there instead of driving. For example, I've lived in my current house about one year now, and I'm often surprised when local people who have lived here for years, don't know about the parks, playgrounds, stores and coffee shops at their area. They've never even heard of them.
Walking a first thing in the morning is really energizing and helps to get your mind ready for the day ahead. Not to mention seeing the beautiful sunrises you get to see while everyone else is still asleep…
Step 4 to Better Morning: Get Your Greens In
Just the way I love to get my workout done during the first part of my day, I also like to get my greens in in the morning. I can always have more later, and most of the time, I do. But when I start my day with a green smoothie, I know that I've had at least one dose of greens already.
Right now, it also helps that I'm taking the Simple Green Smoothies Challenge this month, which means that I'm committing to have one green smoothie every day during the month of April. It's been great!
Here's one example of a super simple and tasty green smoothie (you see the picture above):
- 1 cup spinach
- 1 banana
- 1/2 cups frozen peaches
- 1.5 tbsp almond butter
- 1/2 cup almond milk (or more or less, depending on how thick smoothie you want)
Blend greens and milk first, then add in the rest of the ingredients. Sprinkle with pumpkin seeds for some more protein.
Step 5 to Better Morning: Get Your Mindset Right
Okay, it may sound like a woo-woo to you, but it's really not. The thoughts you think in the morning set a tone to your whole day.
Here are some ways to set your mind right:
- Meditate. I do this in the morning, exactly because I feel that it gets my mind ready for the day. I sit down for 30 minutes to listen to my Holosync meditation track.
- I get it that you may not have time for a 30-minute meditation. But you can still do something. In your mind, send positive thoughts to people you care about. Another woo-woo? Don't say it before you try it. You end up being nicer, calmer and happier person throughout the day. You don't lose your nerve that easily either.
- Always know that today is a new day with new opportunities. Leave behind what happened yesterday, there's not much you can do about it anymore. But you can decide how you create your day today.
The things you do and thoughts you think in the morning largely affect your whole day.
For me, it's really similar to eating a breakfast. If I eat a sugary muffin for breakfast, I my blood sugar spikes up and then drops down, instead of staying stable. If I eat eggs and a green smoothie, my blood sugar is in better balance, I don't get odd cravings and I make better food choices throughout the day.
When I wake up not rested, it shows in the rest of my day. I may try my best to stay positive despite the bad sleep, and it works to some extent, but it's still really hard to do my work or focus on important things.
After a good night sleep, drinking plenty of water, getting some fresh air, getting the first serving of greens and thinking positive thoughts are the things that belong to every healthy morning.
Try at least one of those things to make your mornings better!