You’ve probably heard a million times – How you start your day is how you live your life! You need a morning routine! Own your morning, own your day! What do those sayings even mean? Don’t we literally all already have morning routines?
Yes, we do. We are creatures of habit: We likely shower our bodies in the same order every day and put on makeup or brush our teeth in the same pattern, too. Part of your morning routine might also include angrily stopping the alarm clock and promptly hit the snooze button two….or five times. Then you might rush around, lose your keys or your phone, might be late to work, and then be running so behind that you can’t eat or bring your breakfast to work. Sound about right?
Friend, you need a better morning routine. Specifically, you need to get up 30-60 minutes earlier than your regular time and create a peaceful start to your day. This time can include whatever makes you happy because that is the sole purpose – to make you happy. You can exercise, read the Bible, write daily affirmations or what you are grateful for, meditate, make your smoothie, whatever you want. This is guilt-free time that doesn’t affect your children or significant other. This time is for you and only you.
Below, in no particular order, are ten reasons why you need a better morning routine.
All success starts with your morning – The single biggest reason you need a better morning routine is because all empowerment can be traced to how you start your morning. And this includes the snooze button. I swear to you that I can be articulate and even wrote a book, but when it comes to my passion for getting up earlier, it’s hard to put into words how life-giving it can be. Creating a better morning routine and showing yourself that you matter to yourself every single day is such a gesture of self-love.
We teach our children to believe in and value themselves, but we let go of ourselves so early on. Why? Friend, we still matter. Waking up earlier and building time in your schedule for yourself every day is the best gift you can give yourself. You will be more productive (cleaning random, unexpected things), more patient with your children, high with exercise endorphins, and so proud.
Because you are tired all the time – I know it sounds counterintuitive: If you are super tired, how can you be expected to wake up earlier in the morning? Girl, you are tired because you aren’t getting enough sleep! If you are exhausted all the time, there is no way you can do anything for yourself, and then you become even more depleted. It then turns into a cycle – you hit the snooze button in the morning, rush to work in a panicked state, and hurry all day to play catch up. You have no time to read, have a cup of tea, exercise, or do anything other than watch tv and collapse by 10 (or 9) on the couch.
Sound familiar? The cherry on top becomes a layer or resentment you didn’t even know you had about not being able to have a freaking single second for yourself. Friend, you will not get any single seconds unless you create them, and the only time to do that is in the morning, before it’s taken away from you.
You need quick wins – There are SOOOOO many things in our lives that make us feel inadequate on any given day – you forget that it’s “wear red day” for spirit week at your son’s school (just me?), to get flu shots, buy the teachers’ holiday gifts, or finish a certain report by 2:00 that day. You might feel inadequate about not having insightful feedback at a meeting, and hello, your pants are tighter because it’s January. There is enough tearing us down every day. You need to stack the deck by beginning your day with a win.
If you make a morning routine a habit every day, you will begin your day WITH A WIN that no one can take away from you. Before you even leave the house, you will have exercised – WIN!, eaten breakfast – WIN!, done a gratitude practice – WIN!, ready the Bible – WIN!, whatever is on your list, and it helps you not just handle, but deflect the opportunities for inadequacies that occur throughout the remainder of the day.
Want to know what your life will look like in 5 years? – We don’t have a crystal ball, but if you want to know what your life will look like in five years, look at your morning. How did it go today? Was it hectic? Did you hit snooze 1, 3, 6 times? Were you late for work? Did you have the best of intentions to get up early, but didn’t? If you are in the habit of rushing in the morning and crashing at night, that is exactly what your life will look like in five years. If you aren’t happy with that, then you need to change it. Nothing will change if you change nothing.
Because you feel invisible in your own life. – You need, and I mean that word very purposely, you NEED to do something for yourself. You can be two things at the same time: Happy with your family and overall life and complacent and lazy about sticking up for yourself. No one is going to make sure you are fulfilled every day. That’s on you. If you feel like a cog in a machine, then it’s up to you to change it. Only you can do that.
It is so much easier to allow ourselves to become invisible and feel like understudies in our own lives than to sit through the hard work of personal growth. YOU DON’T DESERVE TO FEEL INVISIBLE IN YOUR OWN LIFE! But you must save yourself. The best time to ensure time for yourself is to build it into your day before everyone else wakes up so that it’s guilt-free (no mom or partner guilt for taking time away from others!) and guaranteed.
You don’t believe yourself anymore – Get ready because this is going to sound dramatic, but another reason you need a better morning routine is because you don’t even trust yourself anymore. How many times have you told yourself you would start a new diet and then did it for three days and stopped? How many times have you told yourself you would exercise before work and hit snooze three times instead? How many times do you have the best of intentions to tackle something YOU KNOW IS GOOD FOR YOU, but still don’t follow through?
In effect, we are teaching our brains to not even listen to ourselves. We don’t believe that the goal is real because we rarely follow through with it. Once a week doesn’t count as consistency. When we do something once or twice and then not again for three weeks (You know how I know you do this? Because I used to do it, too!), it trains our brain to not take it seriously. It’s as if the “intention” means nothing because we already know it’s not “real” and is unlikely to happen.
You gotta stop this. You are shortchanging your life. If you can prioritize yourself and make a better morning routine a habit, I PROMISE you that you will feel more confident, be proud of yourself, and it will open a whole new door of possibility that you never even knew was there. You deserve to trust and believe in yourself.
Physical benefits – Everyone’s morning routine is specific to them, and while I encourage you to incorporate exercise, it doesn’t have to include it. If your morning does include moving your body, though, there are numerous health benefits like a potential decrease in blood pressure, joint pain, and weight. If you start the day with exercise, you are more likely to stay on your eating plan or eat nutritious foods that fuel your body instead of sabotaging yourself. Exercising temporarily alters the hormones and chemicals in our brain, which helps us, then, make better decisions for hours afterward. This can include eating, communicating with our family, work performance, and more.
Because you need time for yourself – Just typing that is a little overwhelming. As I typed that, the pressure of a never-ending to-do list felt like it was weighing down my shoulders. All the roles we fill and responsibilities we serve can be enough to make us cry somedays. Have you ever felt like the week had already been long, even though it was only Monday? That’s what I’m talking about – you feel like you never have enough time for anything, let alone yourself. When we are overloaded, the easiest thing to remove from the list is something that, in theory, only impacts you. We readily skip exercise and grab something from a fast food place instead of cooking, thinking it will give us more time for our family or other things we need to do.
In the short-term, these actions might feel like good decisions. Or, you might know in the back of your mind that it’s not the best for you, but you keep the thought shoved waaaay in the back and refuse to let yourself think about it. Does this sound familiar? Does this sound healthy? You know it’s not.
But again, it is on you to make time for yourself. I’m not going to sit on a high horse and piously say this is easy and that you could just do this if you wanted to. I’m not going to BS you and act like I’m perfect. I’m not. I struggle just like you do. We might know in our heads what we need to do, but then we don’t do it. I’m right there with you. I still do it, too, sometimes.
But how you show up for yourself the majority of the time is a predictor of your future. If you keep shoving those thoughts to the recesses of your mind, then you will never have time for yourself. Girl, get up early and take back the morning! Take time for you before anyone can take it away! You can’t go poof! and make more hours appear in the day, but I promise if you wake up an hour earlier, you will feel like you’ve been given extra time in your day.
Because you need to feel hopeful again – As an 11-year counselor, I know that hopelessness and helplessness can be signs of depression. That’s not what I’m talking about here, though. What I’m referring to when I say “you need to feel hopeful again,” is a pervasive blah feeling. You know logically that you can be successful if you took certain steps, but you get in your own way and don’t take them.
You need to feel like you can get back into this and create goodness for yourself. YOU need to create it for yourself. It’s ok if someone helps you along the way, but YOU must be the conductor. It’s important for your self-efficacy that you take control of the situation. When you take control, it immediately starts planting the seeds for hope again. And we could all use a little more hope in our lives.
Because you are happy with your life, but complacent with yourself – Sometimes people blow off personal growth authors, speakers, and products because they feel like it’s only for “broken” or “traumatized” people. Personal growth is for every person. If you aren’t growing, you are dying. I know that is blunt, but the biggest sign of being in a rut is not challenging yourself. I understand the safety of going to the same job for years and knowing “your place” in a business. You know all your co-workers, you understand the culture of the business, and have everything situated just the way you like in your office. I get it.
But too much of that is also a red flag. Girl, don’t let yourself get complacent. You could be completely happy with your family, feel blessed, like your job, and be happy with all the things AND STILL feel complacent and lazy toward yourself. It is soooo much easier to allow ourselves to remain stagnant. I get it. On the flip side, trying new things is not for the faint at heart. It is SO HARD. You must sit in the muck of feeling stupid, inadequate, overwhelmed at times, insecure about not knowing what you are doing, the fear of failure, and being unsure if it will ever “pay off.”
Hard things also inspire passion, light your heart on fire, give you purpose, make you feel alive again, and bring you back to your soul. I know, dramatic, right? Once our lives are crazy busy with family, marriage, and jobs, it’s easy to lose sight of what makes us excited outside of those areas. You deserve something that makes you happy that has nothing to do with your children or significant other. Wanting something for yourself doesn’t make you selfish. It makes you a more patient and happier parent and spouse. I promise.
All of this starts with making time for yourself in the morning. It might sound overly simplistic, which is what I thought before I started this journey, but from one overwhelmed woman to another, an earlier morning routine is life-giving and life-saving. Big hugs to you.
Do YOU wish you had a better morning routine? Are you sick of rushing and starting the day in a crazed state? Comment below or email me! I’m here to help!
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