Since returning to school, and having an endless to do list, I needed to come up with a morning routine that I can establish to ensure I set myself up for success, rather than failure. We’ve all had those mornings where you press snooze a few too many times, and end up rushing to work with a half packed/half nutritious lunch, and your shoes on the wrong feet. Okay, maybe not that exaaaact scenario. Here are a few things that help me, actually SAVE me, so that my days are packed with not only productivity, but a healthy mind frame to conquer the days challenges.
The first thing I do every morning, actually it starts the night before (confusing isn’t it?) But PACK YOUR LUNCH. I can’t stress this enough. We all have health and fitness goals, and a questbar isn’t always the answer. I usually will pack leftovers, or make a huge nutrient dense salad with whatever leftover protein my handsome boyfriend graciously barbecued up for me. Throw in some fresh cut veggies, nuts, smoothie and that’s usually my go-to for my 12 hour day shifts. Fact: I usually have a smoothie at my dinner break at work so I can still go home and enjoy a nice supper with the boyfriend, and I don’t want anything too heavy! If you’re playing the 8-5 game, then the smoothie also works perfect for preworkout fuel.
The second thing, is GO TO BED EARLY. I don’t know if people are bragging or what, but when I mention I go to bed at 9:30 (sometimes I make it to 10), they laugh and say they go to bed at midnight and usually run on 5-6 hours of sleep. I pride myself on getting at least 7 hours of sleep a night. A proper sleep ensures your brain gets rest and recovery so it can function optimally the next day.
Third, and something I struggle with but have started making it a priority, is waking up with a POSITIVE mindset. It’s easy to default to grouchiness after pressing snooze too many times and thinking about the long day ahead. But where will that get you? I purposefully wake up earlier than I really need to, and feel excited for the days events. I have this amazing opportunity to go to a job I love and have worked hard for, change peoples lives, study content in which I am thoroughly interested in (holistic nutrition), am privileged to engage in some form of exercise everyday, because my body is capable; and finish off the evening with delicious food that I am grateful I can afford and prepare. Then I get to spend quality time with my boyfriend, and tuck myself in to do it all over again. How lucky am I, actually? Be grateful for what you have, and when you remind yourself of your beautiful life every morning, it’s easy to start off the day on the right foot.
Fourth, make sure you NURTURE your body and mind. Spend a few moments practicing mindfulness, or meditation. There are tons of apps with guided meditation (I’m currently using the Happiness App) and it can really make a difference in regards to recognizing when moments get away from you and you’re no longer in the present. Tomorrow is a different day, so lets all worry about that when you cross that bridge. Nuture your body by doing some exercise (depending on what my schedule is, sometimes I have to workout in the evening as opposed to in the mornings, which I prefer!). Hit up a yoga class, go for a run, or fuel up and go crush leg day, but move your body. This point also includes making sure you nourish yourself with a healthy breakfast. I won’t go to much into this, as I’ll have MANY posts on nutrition in the future. But listen to your body, and feed it. However, I will point out that make sure you’re getting plenty of nutrients on your plate, bowl, or smoothie cup! Here’s a pic of my boyfriends smoothie that he makes everyday. This is how he gets his veggies in and that’s just fine by me. Veggies galore, berries, protein powder, carrot juice, tumeric, and some other supplements he throws in there to complete his gigantic breakfast.
And lastly, SET GOALS for your day. I am an extremely goal oriented person, so I may be biased! I have my Lorna Jane planner in front of me right now, with my colorful pens and all, and make sure I write down a few goals for the day. Read this chapter, go for this run, run this errand etc… Sometimes anxiety and stress are stemmed from those pesky little tasks that you just can’t get to. Figure out what you need to do, and do it. You’ll feel much better after you’ve finally filled out that Nexus application after staring at it on your desktop for weeks on end because the darn thing is 10 pages! Truth.
Even changing one little thing at a time can make a difference. If what you’re doing works for you, well keep doing it! But if you’re finding yourself dragging through the day unprepared and unproductive, then recognize something needs to change, and commit for even a week! Set your alarm 15 minutes earlier, or start making your lunch for the following day during the commercials of The Voice. Just get to it!
Happy Friday friends.