A good morning routine can set you up for the entire day. It can help you feel accomplished, productive, and energized and tackle the things on your to-do list. I believe that a morning routine starts the night before with a night routine, which I will post later on, but for now let’s dive into some kick-ass ways to bump up your MR! 

Inspiring Practices

Every morning before you start doing things for other people, you want to make sure you are taking care of yourself. This can be physically, mentally, or spiritually. To calm your mind, I recommend meditating for at least 5 minutes. This will calm the nervous system, because we focus on the breath and not the thoughts rolling around in our head. Meditating has become essential for starting my day off right. It sets me up for difficulties that come up in my day because I have given me that time to be with myself and change my perspective on my energy. I have also been inspired by lots of guided meditations that focus on topics such as letting go of difficult emotions, or gaining confidence. My favorite FREE apps for meditating are Meditation Studio and Simple Habit.

Another way I like to bring more joy into my morning is journaling. After reading the book The Artist’s Way by Julie Cameron, I started doing her method of morning pages. Upon waking, you would groggily write out 3 full pages of whatever is on your mind. If you have nothing to write, just write, “blah, blah, blah..,” until you think of something. You can write about your day, something your struggling with, the dream you just had, something exciting in your life…I also like to add in 1-3 things I’m grateful for just at the top to keep my mind grounded in the present. When we focus on what we are grateful for, we tend to be more content with our current reality. For perfectionists, this is especially important because we are always yearning to be better or more for our lives. This is also a great activity if you’re looking for ways to be more creative. By practicing this every day, we can then access our voice easier for writing, speaking, or creative projects. 
Lastly, if you feel closer to God in the morning, taking some time for prayer or reading the Bible can also be inspiring. I have recently added this into my morning routine. Sundays, I will watch my church online called The Meeting House, and I started to feel like I didn’t know much about the stories that they are sharing, so I took up reading the bible from the beginning. Being not as religious, this was difficult as first. This pushed me to see someone else’s words as an inspiring way of looking at my own life and also the relationship I have with God and other people. 
Some other ways to incorporate inspiring practices would be to read motivating or enlightening quotes as well as stating a mantra for the day. My favorite right now is: “I know enough, I have enough, I am enough.” 
Mindful Movement
Another way I get ready for my day is through moving my body. This can mean strenuous exercises or just warming up the body and getting a little blood flowing. Lately, I’ve been loving a simple yoga routine in the morning. I’ll put on a YouTube video and do a morning flow to wake my body up and stretch from a long night of resting. My favorite channels are, Yoga with Kassandra and Sarah Beth Yoga. My mornings are my time to relax before a busy day, so my strenuous work tends to be outside of my home whether I’m going to a Barre class, Yoga class, or 9 Round class. 
When I wasn’t working for lululemon and didn’t have the benefit of taking local community classes, I was an advocate for FREE workouts. Sometimes now if I cannot make a class schedule, I will just search the unlimited amounts of free, no equipment, 20 minute workouts on YouTube and just do it on my mat in my living room. Moving your body doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated, just move until your heart rate increases or you sweat. 

Getting outside is also a beautiful way to get in movement to your day. Because some of my nights are late, I prioritize sleep over waking up too early. By the time I’m awake it’s 90 degrees Fahrenheit outside here in Orlando, FL and the thought of walking or running outside does not appeal to me. When the weather cools down, absolutely. Half-hour swift walks in your neighborhood are perfect for calming the body, breathing fresh air, getting blood moving, and being closer to nature. 

Home Care
This could be so different for everyone because we all live such different lives. We have different needs, different animals, some have kids, some live abroad, and so on. How I like to take care of my home in the morning is with simple chores. I start with making my bed, then opening up the shades to let in natural light. 
This is also my time to do the mindless tasks that don’t require much thought such as unloading the dishwasher and  the dryer. When I have accomplished those things I can feel good about having a clean environment around me to start my day. Sometimes I even do it before meditating because it will stay on my mind during the session if I don’t. 
My morning routine is also my time to take care of my plants and fur baby. I will water my herbs and my palm tree out on my balcony. I will also, feed my kitty, put new water in her dish and clean out her litter box. I know, not the most glamorous, but I feel like I can finally relax when I know they are taken care of. 

Before I get out of bed sometimes I will take some time to cuddle my cat. This is a newly added activity in my routine and I love it. All our animals (and children) want is love and cuddles. The morning and evening are great times to spend with your furry besties and give them the love the so yearn from you all day. It’s become a habit that I look forward to when I know I don’t have to think about anything else except loving her. Try this with your animals and your kids. Give them some family time and love to start their day and most of all your day. 

Self Care
The early hours of the day are perfect times for self-care. First things first, I rehydrate my body after 6-8 hours of no water with a big 1 liter mason jar. I will also take my probiotic. To properly eliminate throughout the day, starting off with water is vital. It wakes up the digestive system, and gets your organs moving. Sometimes I will intermittent fast with just water and coffee, but most mornings I will have food only after I’ve had a BM (bowel movement). Sorry for the graphics, but this is super important for your health that you are regular and H2O is beneficial for that. 
After my mindful movement, I will dry-brush then hop in the shower. Dry-brushing is incredible for waking up the circulation in the skin, lymphatic drainage, proper elimination of toxins, and minimizes skin blemishes and cellulite. Since all of your dead skin cells will be floating around on the surface after this exercise, hop in the bath or shower to cleanse them off. 
I will also go through my skincare routine for the morning after my shower. This consists of a cleanser, toner, serum, and a face cream with SPF. Then I slather on some lotion on my body and slip on my satin (pink of course) robe to wear while I make some food. I have a very simple skincare/haircare routine comparable to most. I do not blow dry my hair or put on makeup anymore, so my routine is much shorter. If you need time for these things, make sure to plan accordingly so that you can not feel rushed when trying to relax. 
Lastly, I will make myself some wholesome breakfast with a cup of decaf coffee. My go-to meals have been oats with berries and nut butter, as well as avocado toast with eggs. I sometimes have my breakfasts already meal prepped if I am short for time. I will also buy my favorite protein bars to keep on hand, just in case I’m not feeling very hungry that morning. 
Prioritize & Plan
As my lotion is drying and I’m sipping the last bits of my coffee, I will sit down to plan my day. I will layout my Erin Condren planner and look at what my day and week looks like and write out my personal and professional to-do list (if not already written). I will also update my google calendar if I need to. 
This is also a great time to check my finances and update my budget from the day before. My husband and I are on a tight budget trying to pay off the wedding right now and the Dave Ramsey Every Dollar app (Free) helps us with keeping track. I’ve also learning the hard way over the years, that checking your account everyday and coming face to face with your reality is incredibly important for your emotional wellbeing and personal responsibility. I have definitely avoided looking at my bank accounts on many occasions for fear of what my spending habits did to my funds. But just like many things in life, avoiding your problems will not solve anything. I recommend everyone get a budget and know where your money is going. 
Now that my day is planned, I will get dressed, pack my bag and head out the door! Easy breezy jus like that. Now, just a disclaimer, this is an ideal morning routine. Every day is a little bit different and I can’t get to everything on my list. I’m not perfect (no one is), so this is just a structure I strive for when I want to have a great morning to set me up for my day. 
I hope you found this guide helpful and you can start incorporating these habits into your morning routine. Comment below with your favorite part of your morning routine or something you want to start incorporating today. 
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