I am definitely a morning person; an early bird rather than a night owl. I am up before 7am every single morning, without fail, even if it’s just to sip coffee and watch the breakfast news. I can’t say for sure if this is a natural thing for me or not but I know that my years of commuting have a lot to do with how I approach my mornings now.
I hate rushing and like to take my time first thing; prioritise myself and enjoy a relaxed start to the day. When you have to take early trains or leave to avoid motorway traffic, the solution is to get up earlier. Now that I am working from home without the need to commute, I am still getting up early so I can keep my routines going. It’s certainly one of the things that has got me through lockdown.
My morning routine
My morning routine isn’t rigid but I do have certain things I like to do before I sit down to work. My must-dos are journalling, exercise and breakfast; not necessarily in that order. I get up between 6 and 6.30, drink a glass of water, feed the cat and pour coffee. I write in my journal then sit and eat a small breakfast of yogurt and fruit.
Depending on my mood, I’ll either read for a bit or watch some news until around 7.30 when I do some exercise. This is either a strength training session, a run if it’s not too cold outside or a yoga class – some kind of movement is essential. After exercising it’s time to shower and get ready to start work for 9. I usually have more to eat at this time too: maybe porridge or scrambled egg and toast.
Tips for slow mornings
These are some of the things I do to get the best out of my mornings. These work whether I’m heading out the door to the office or staying at home for the day and set me up for a focused day whatever my plans.
Take your time
We are talking about SLOW mornings here. The entire point is to not rush through it. Enjoy the time, take care, be mindful.
Light a candle or you favourite incense
Calming morning scents help me with focus and mindfulness. I love the hand-poured candles from Old Man & Magpie, available at The Future Kept (Lavender & Cedar and the Calm candles are my favourites).
Plan your mornings
Have a rough plan of things you want to do after waking but don’t try to do too much. You can always tweak your routine later, try new things or stop doing what isn’t working for you.
Set a sleep schedule.
Get up at the same time every morning and go to bed at the same time every night. Even if you are loose with you morning routine, setting a wake up time helps improve your circadian rhythm and your alertness.
Get things ready the night before
Set the coffee machine, get your workout clothes ready, set out your journalling things. Whatever you need for the morning, make sure it’s within reach and easy to get to.
Don’t try to copy other people or set unrealistic expectations.
Seek inspiration, sure, but one size doesn’t fit all. If you’re a night owl, don’t try getting up at 5am every day. If you can’t face exercising in the morning, don’t even try. This should be a process you enjoy.