Establishing a Sustainable Morning Routine
Establishing a morning routine to help avoid the ‘flight & flight mode’ upon waking can make all the difference in increasing productivity, reducing stress levels, feeling organised, and having the confidence in knowing that you are in control of your day, not the other way round.
A morning routine should not be focused on who can accomplish the most or check off more boxes than everyone else. Instead, it is about allowing yourself to begin your day with confidence, energy, and a positive attitude.
From our experience, a well structured morning routine should consist of:
Hydration- roughly 60% of our bodies are made up of water. Water allows blood circulation, which transports nutrients to your cells and removes waste from within. Dehydration is strongly linked to decreased mental performance, meaning that completing tasks such as memorising or learning new things will be much more difficult. Water is an essential nutrient that all organs and tissues in your body depend on to function efficiently.. Since your body loses water regularly, you need to compensate for these losses to avoid dehydration, especially after a night's rest. A good target is 600ml- 1 litre as soon as you wake up.
A Cold Shower- Studies show cold showers help reduce stress levels. Taking cold showers imposes a small amount of stress on your body, which leads to a process called hardening, meaning that your nervous system gradually gets used to handling moderate levels of stress. Cold showers wake your body up, inducing a higher state of alertness. They create a more robust immune response, increasing the amount of white blood cells in your body leading to help protect your body against diseases. In addition, by incorporating cold showers into your daily routine, you are strengthening your willpower and mental capacity.. This may seem tough but just like when swimming in the ocean the initial shock will last roughly 5 seconds, focus on your breathing and your body will adapt over time.
Mobility, stretching or yoga- These practices allow your body to wake up and increase your range of movement for the day. They are a great stress reliever and a good way to give yourself 3-5 minutes to focus on your body then focus on your day ahead. They allow you to Increase your mobility allowing you to move better throughout the day and during a workout. Partaking in Mobility, stretching or yoga is especially great for people who are on long commutes or work an office job. If time is limited aim for 5 minutes of vinyasa style yoga to get the body moving.
Practising gratitude- The Practice of gratitude and showing appreciation daily can have a profound effect on your mental wellbeing, even more-so when times are tough. Practising gratitude allows you to approach the day in a beautiful headspace, one of joy and purpose. People who practice gratitude tend to be less stressed and less depressed than those who don’t. They are less likely to be overwhelmed by bad fortune. They even sleep better at night. We have found that practicing gratitude each day instills a level of perspective that makes us appreciate all the things that we have in our life. It allows us to control the controllables and forget the uncontrollables. Use your Key Journal to outline three things you are grateful for each day.
Scheduling your day - Ensures you are being proactive vs reactive. It allows you to gain clarity for what your day looks like so you can approach it with structure. Once you have taken the time to schedule your day and week, you can then examine and identify your priority tasks, giving a clear indication of the direction in which you are heading. Most importantly, remember to schedule time for yourself, create the free time to do things solely for yourself that make you happy, feel relaxed and refreshed as this is when your best work within the mind will be done. Use the Key Journal to schedule your days and highlight the must do high priority tasks for that day.
Click here to acess a table providing the framework for you to put together the fundamentals of your own morning routine. If need be, possibly starting with just 1 thing, and increasing over time. The ideal outcome of the table below is to construct a morning routine that consists of giving yourself time to hydrate, take a cold shower, move, practice gratitude, plan your day and do so with clarity and joy.