If you are not a “morning person” you may recoil in horror at the idea of waking up even earlier to include morning rituals in your busy schedule. You do not have to wake up at 5 AM every day to benefit from introducing morning rituals into your life. If you drink a cup of coffee in the morning or immediately start scrolling through social media after turning off your alarm then you already have morning rituals. The idea is to optimize your morning routine for a more stress-free and productive day. Our mornings can set the tone for the rest of our day which is why many experts recommend using the morning to spend some time on you.
What is a Morning Ritual?
A morning ritual is a task that you perform in the morning every day. This can range from taking a walk to making a to-do list. Your morning rituals should be tailored for what works best for you.
These Benefits of Morning Rituals are Backed by Scientific Studies:
More Productive Days
Taking a few moments at the beginning of the day to organize your thoughts and plan your day can go a long way when it comes to productivity. Going into work groggy, grumpy, and unprepared can leave you feeling unfulfilled and unaccomplished. Having a productive day is not just about making a to-do list either.
Having a morning ritual that makes you feel good about yourself and start the day off in a relaxed mood will also help you be more productive. Instead of rushing into all of the tasks you have to complete with a scrambled mind.
Stress is a normal human reaction to having too much to do in too little time. There are a lot of physical and mental ways that stress can affect you over time. This includes increased anxiety, developing depression, fatigue, headaches, and even body pains from tension. One of the ways that having a morning ritual benefits you is that you know what to expect every morning and so your brain has less to worry about. Self-care rituals like exercise, journaling, or meditation can reduce your stress levels throughout the day because you can approach challenges from a clear mindset.
If your morning rituals currently include things like pressing the snooze button multiple times, scrolling on social media while chugging a boiling cup of coffee, skipping breakfast, and violating several traffic laws as you speed to work…well that’s not great, but you are not alone. Many people get into bad habits and do not know how to break them. Having a morning ritual is a great way to implement healthy habits into your life. Having a schedule in the morning can help you make time in your day for working out and eating a healthy breakfast. These healthy habits will make you feel more energized and productive throughout the day and benefit your long term health. It is tempting to hit the snooze button (we have all been there), but once you get into a routine your body will adjust to waking up at a specific time. Having morning rituals that you enjoy to look forward to will motivate you to get out of bed in the mornings.
Have you ever taken a long commute to work and settled into your work when you suddenly groan and realize you forgot to complete an important task at home? Having a morning routine can help to prevent you from forgetting important things. Imagine working all night on writing a paper just to forget it at home on the day it is due. Instances like that are avoidable by using morning rituals to take time to reflect on the day ahead of you and prepare.
Getting into a regular morning routine means that you do the same tasks every morning which makes it harder to forget things. Creating a to-do list is a morning ritual that will have a huge benefit in helping you to remember all of the important things you have to get done that day. Being clear-headed in the morning helps to improve memory.
Make More Time For Yourself
Morning routines save time because you do not have to waste time thinking about what to do next. This means that you can get more sleep or get more things done in the morning. Having time for yourself in the morning means that you can spend more time getting ready for the day. You can plan out your outfits and spend more time on your appearance which will make you feel confident and look more put together.
For many people, the morning hours are a sacred time. Families with children will appreciate the quiet and calm before the kids wake up. Take time for yourself in the morning to walk outside and smell the fresh air. Write in your journal, burn a candle, meditate, take a bath, and pamper yourself and you will feel better all day. There are many ways that you can pamper yourself in the morning.
Why Morning Routines Are Important
All of the benefits that we listed have one thing in common: they will help you be a more successful person with a more positive attitude. Both your career and personal life can benefit from morning rituals.
For Your Career
People who work in sales or management know how far a positive attitude can go. Being in a leadership position is a lot of responsibility and coming into work every morning in “pre-coffee mode” can be off-putting for your future career prospects.
● Better leadership skills ● Better decision making ● Look better by spending more time on your appearance ● Inspire others to be like you ● Positive mood ● Increased productivity ● More confidence
Having a confident attitude can go a long way in the professional world. If you can’t manage to brush your hair or lint roll the cat hair from your slacks before work, then why should you be trusted to manage important clients and projects? Appearance is less important than your work ethic and performance, but they both play a role in how successful you can be in your career field.
For Your Relationships
Having a lot of stress and a rushed schedule can lead to less fulfilling relationships in your life. Morning rituals allow you to take time for yourself so that you can make time for them. Spending quality time with your significant other or spouse in the morning instead of just silently bumping shoulders in the kitchen as you get ready for work in a frenzy can help your relationship be more loving and healthy.
● Less morning grumpiness ● Spend more quality time ● Talk about your plans for the future ● Less stress means fewer arguments ● Get more done as a couple or a family
The same thing goes for spending time with your children. Having an organized routine for the morning allows you to spend extra time with the kids by cooking them breakfast, going over their homework assignments, or simply seeing them off to school with a smile. Being grumpy in the morning because of stress and lack of sleep can affect the people that you love. Some people get snappy or distant when they are under stress which can make significant others and children avoid you completely in the morning.
If this sounds familiar then you need to start using morning rituals right away to get control of your time. Even if you are completely single and childless, your relationships can benefit from a morning ritual. You could check up on an older relative or parent, text a friend, or meet up with a coworker for coffee and a morning stroll with the extra time you make in the mornings.
For Your Mental Health
The importance of mental health has become more obvious to society in recent times. In the past, a lot of people neglected to take care of their mental health when trying to be more productive or handle a heavy workload/responsibilities. We know now that mental health plays an important role in how productive and successful we can be. Morning rituals make time for you to do things that improve your mental health.
Being too stressed out is bad for you in all aspects. Creating a morning routine that benefits your mental health will have positive benefits that spill out into other areas of your life. People who struggle with anxiety, ADHD, and depression can improve their mental health and reduce the severity of their symptoms by using healthy morning rituals.
Of course, burning a candle in the morning is not a replacement for seeing a mental health professional if you need one, but taking time to focus on your mental health can certainly help. Therapists, life-coaches, and doctors all recommend having a routine in place.
For Your Physical Health
We have already discussed in detail why stress is bad for your health and how morning rituals can reduce stress, but what are the other ways morning rituals can benefit your physical health? Having a routine will free up your time in the morning that you would usually spend scrolling on your phone or trying to decide what to do first (procrastinating). Structured daily schedules are an effective way for being more productive overall, including for your health.
● Exercise more ● Eat healthier ● Get more sleep ● Wake up with more energy
You do not have to wake up earlier to have a morning routine. When you have a list of things that you need to do each morning it becomes easier to take care of the necessary tasks in a shorter amount of time. This way you can catch a few minutes of extra sleep. Your body will naturally fall into a rhythm of going to sleep and waking up at a certain time which will make you feel more rested when the dreaded alarm clock goes off. The alarm clock may not be so dreaded when you have a healthy breakfast and careless routine to look forward to. It will eventually become effortless to wake up at the same time every day.
One of the best times to exercise is in the morning because it gives you a rush of endorphins and promotes energy levels to start the day. A lot of people have difficulty finding the motivation to work out first thing in the morning, but with a daily routine, it will become easier. A simple walk around the block while you drink your coffee and watch the sunrise is a great way to get your blood flowing first thing in the morning.
Morning rituals are a routine of doing the same thing every morning until you get into a natural habit. You can use the mornings to get things done, care for yourself, and spend time with loved ones. The quiet hours of the morning are great for journaling and reflecting on the day you have ahead of you.
Many areas of your life can benefit from having a routine of morning rituals. You can be more productive and successful at work, have more fulfilling relationships with your loved ones, and take better care of your mental/physical health. Each day starts with a morning, so why not start it out on a positive note? Leave bad habits in the past and introduce new, healthier habits with a morning routine.
Studies have shown that morning rituals promote higher energy levels and less stress during the day. They also can free up time to spend on yourself such as pampering your skin and hair, dressing nicely, writing, meditating, or just enjoying a cup of coffee in peace (instead of spilling it on your lap on the freeway). Healthy habits like cooking breakfast instead of getting drive-thru fast food or taking a morning walk can improve your health for years to come.
It may take some time to get used to a new morning routine, so don’t be too hard on yourself if you mess up at first. Before you know it your morning rituals will flow so naturally that you will forget that you ever used to have chaotic, rushed mornings in the past.