Want to turbocharge your morning and get your working day off to the best possible start? Read the 14 easy secrets to an amazingly productive morning routine.
Are you the kind of person who leaps out of bed at 5am every day bursting with ideas for the day ahead and ready for an hour of intensive yoga?
Or, like most of us, do you struggle to open your eyes as the alarm goes off for the third time, and groan at the thought of the marathon of breakfast-making, teeth cleaning-supervising and uniform-finding ahead of you before you even think of work?
If you’re more of the latter type of morning person, we’ve got good news for you. You don’t need to have a complete personality (or energy) transplant to learn to enjoy mornings and get more out of them. With just a few tiny tweaks to your routine you could soon learn to start your day the way you mean to go on – upbeat, energised and amazingly productive!
14 easy secrets to an amazingly productive morning routine
So what are these simple tweaks? Here are 14 easy secrets to an amazingly productive morning routine. If you like, feel free to adopt all of them. But even if you only take on board one of two of them, you can look forward to a very different, improved start to your working day.
1) Don’t snooze!
If you wake up before your alarm, don’t be tempted to close your eyes and grab those last few precious minutes in bed – get up and start moving! If you do stay in bed, you could fall into a deeper sleep and find it harder to wake up when your alarm does finally go off.
2) Swap your morning coffee for lemon water
As tempting as that first sip of caffeine in the morning may be, resist it! Studies show that the best way to get moving in the day is to drink warm water with fresh lemon. Here are some of the reputed benefits you can look forward to:
- It stimulates your digestive tract, helping your body absorb nutrients.
- Its high alkaline content balances your body’s PH levels.
- It also wakes up your liver and helps you flush out toxins.
- The pectin in the lemon juice is said to help with weight loss.
3) Exercise straight away
Jump start your metabolism and blast any remaining sleep away with a short burst of exercise. If you have the time and opportunity (and inclination!) go out for a sort run.
If not, try a quick yoga routine or just dance along to a song on the radio – anything to increase your heart rate and get your pulse going. (Research also shows that exercising before you work improves your mood and productivity.)
4) Make a list the night before
Make sure you’re prepared and focused for the morning by writing a list of everything you need to remember and do the night before. Not only does it stop the last minute panics, but if you can tick a few tasks off before you’ve even left the house you’ll start the day with a sense of accomplishment you’ll be keen to continue.
5) Choose your outfit the night before too
Don’t waste time going through your wardrobe in the morning, despairing of finding anything that fits/is clean/looks nice. Instead, check the day’s weather the night before and choose your outfit then. And if anything needs to be washed or ironed, you still have time.
6) Get up before the kids
As much as you may want to eke out every second of possible sleep, if you can, set your alarm to go off half an hour before your kids usually wake up. And use those 30 minutes wisely. Check and reply to emails, squeeze in some exercise or even just savour the peace and quiet with a cup of tea (or hot lemon!) – the important thing is to enjoy a few quiet moments before the chaos of the day starts.
8) Keep your alarm out of reach
If you’re guilty of pressing ‘snooze’ on your alarm until the last possible second and then flying around trying to play catch-up with time, then you need to outmanoeuvre yourself! Place your alarm inconveniently out of arms reach so you’re forced to actually get out of bed to turn it off, in the hope you’re awake enough by that point not to bother pressing snooze.
9) Get list obsessed
If you’re time poor then you don’t have the luxury of just winging your mornings – you need to be organised. And the key to organisation is lists. But not any old list. You need a well-planned list that focuses your energy on the key tasks you want to accomplish that day, and any smaller errands you can fit in around them.
10) Pick three things you really want to achieve
While you’re making your list, pick three achievements that you really, really want to get done by the end of the day and make them your priority. Get into the habit of doing this every morning and you’ll be surprised at how quickly you start to make progress on your goals!
11) Eat a heathy breakfast
Re-fuel your body with the best possible breakfast to help you hit the ground running at work – and keep going. Some tasty suggestions include porridge with fruit, boiled egg and wholemeal toast or scrambled eggs with vegetables (or a veggie omelette).
Don’t be tempted to skip breakfast; you’ll only find yourself reaching for caffeine or sugar by mid-morning and riding the energy roller coaster (short peaks of energy followed by long slumps!).
12) Wake with the right attitude
Studies show that those who believe they are in control of their lives and are able to influence what happens to them (known as an internal locus of control) tend to be more focused on achievement and end up in better paid positions.
So train your mind to start the day with the right proactive attitude and think ‘What can I do to change my world today?’. Don’t wait for people to call you or fate to deliver your dream life or business – determine to go out and get it as soon as you open your eyes!
13) Plan time for email and social media
Don’t be tempted to reach for your phone or tablet before your eyes have even focused properly. Instead plan a set chunk of time (and stick to it!) in your morning to catch up with the world and all the demands it entails. Before then, focus on YOUR world and plan your day around your agenda.
14) Stick to a routine
When you know you need to do something at a set time, you’ll pull out all the stops to ensure it gets done. So schedule your morning as if you were planning an important event. Know the very minute you all need to be up and dressed and out the door, and even if you work for yourself from home, commit to a set work time and stick to it.
Read more great productivity tips!
You’ll find more brilliant productivity advice in these articles:
- How to do a day’s work in 90 minutes using Focus Blocks
- How to eat your way to productivity when working at home
- Seven ways to multitask properly
- How to set boundaries when you work from home
- Six time management and balance tips for mums
- A quick technique to overcome procrastination