Setting a positive tone for the day ahead can make all the difference. Establishing healthy, creative and productive morning habits will help. The following list is not exhaustive but does include ideas to incorporate or help establish a routine. Of course, these are a good foundation and can be done at any time throughout the day. The idea is to create habits to help you gain clarity before you go out and rule your day.
1. Hydrate. Drinking water after your night’s fast is important. Your body will welcome the hydration.
2. Read. This is a common mention among successful leaders. Read for relaxation but also to gain new knowledge and to keep your mind sharp. A daily devotional can be an easy way to get some reading done.
3. Meditate. Contrary to popular belief, meditation does not have to be an hours-long affair nor do you have to shut off all thoughts to be successful at it. Just a few minutes can be beneficial.
4. Practice visualization. Envisioning the things you want to have, the person you want to be or the places you would like to visit can be a powerful tool to move you forward. Create a picture of your goals in your mind and recreate it every day and as often as you can.
5. Journal. There are too many types of journaling to discuss here. The point is to get started, write anything that comes to mind, clear out the junk in your brain and put it on paper. Use this time to reflect on good or bad times, goals and memories.
6. Exercise. Get those endorphins flowing and you are sure to get off to a positive day.
7. Pray. Prayer gives one hope and gratitude — both positive tones for the day.
8. Set an intention, priority or goal. Give your day at least one item of priority to give you direction. This will also give you a sense of accomplishment at the end of the day.
9. Be still. Just lie or sit in silence. Do nothing, say nothing. Just be.
10. Reflect on things and people that you are grateful for. Gratitude is a great way to start the day. Reflecting on the positive things currently in your life will put a smile on your face and lighten up your heart.
11. Check the news, sports scores, stock market. If these things energize you, then go ahead and use technology to get your boost.
12. Spend time with loved ones. Take these quiet moments – before the busyness takes over – to share a hug or talk with those you love. You cannot get time back, so spend it wisely.
13. Listen to a podcast or music. Podcasts are great because you need only listen to get the benefit. Music is another great energizer — turn it up or listen to it softly.
14. Stretch. Rigorous exercise in the morning may not be your thing but getting those muscles well-oiled will help your body get you through the day.
15. Eat. Nourish your body with food. Put something into your body to power you through the morning.
Whatever you do to start your day off, try to create a routine that will be easily sustained. Try to give yourself an additional few minutes before everyone else wakes up. You may find that the quiet solitude is worth the sacrifice of a few slaps on the snooze button.
Look up the research on each of these to see the benefits that await you. Also, look up the morning routines or habits of successful people. Chances are that you will find many of these items show up on their list.
Share your morning routine in the comments section. I would really love to see what else energizes you all.
Nicole Napuunoa is part of the GovLoop Featured Blogger program, where we feature blog posts by government voices from all across the country (and world!). To see more Featured Blogger posts, click here.