A lot of successful people will tell you that one of the keys is getting up early in the morning. They don’t just get up for the sake of getting up, though. The idea is to rise early and accomplish more by noon than most people accomplish in a full workday. Ideas like this are more or less clichés these days, but that doesn’t make them irrational or wrong in any way. By starting your day as productively as possible you leave more time for getting ahead or even addressing personal goals or hobbies.
If you’re striving to be a productive early riser though, you need to know it’s not just about setting the alarm. You also need an effective early morning routine that can help you get in the right frame of mind to take on the day ahead. For that, we have five suggestions that can help you develop into a full-fledged morning conqueror.
1 – Start The Day Without A Screen
Let’s be honest: most of us start the day by rolling over to grab a smartphone and check a few things. You might see if you have any alerts, check the weather, and then go about looking at email and social media apps to make sure you haven’t missed too much. This is perfectly understandable and can even help prepare you for the day ahead in ways. But it also sets you up for a day of being enslaved to technology, as one other writer put it. Try to hold off for 10 or 15 minutes instead. Give your body time to wake up a bit, and maybe tackle a morning exercise or two (or even your shower) before you turn to your phone or laptop.
2 – Read Or Write Specific Goals
One of the best ways to charge yourself up for a productive day is to remind yourself what you hope to accomplish with that productivity. Some people thrive by writing down goals every night and reading over them the next morning as a quick reminder; others actually prefer to turn to a notepad as soon as they wake up so that they can write out a list of things they hope to accomplish that day. Either way can work beautifully, helping to focus your mind and set some realistic goals in front of you.
3 – Stretch & Breathe
A more rigorous morning workout routine is fine if that’s what you’re into, but a simple fitness routine focused on stretching and breathing can prime you for the day just as effectively. An article that came out just a few months ago focusing on some of the simpler exercises people can do while relaxing (or specifically, gaming) pointed to the easiest one in the book in equal breathing. As they put it, however, this is just as important as any other exercise, and can help you achieve a state of relaxation. This and other simple breathing techniques literally expand your lungs, clear your mind, and allow you to start the day free of stress or negative energy. In a way, you’re doubling down on the rest you got overnight (without getting drowsy).
4 – Spread Out Your Caffeine Time
It’s tempting to gulp down a cup of coffee or tea first thing in the morning, and then set about more leisurely consumption thereafter. Some people may even take the approach of taking a shot of an energy drink first thing in the morning. This can actually be less effective than taking your time with it though. We came across a very long article on morning productivity with a whole section devoted to the effective use of caffeine, and it made some interesting points in this regard. It recommended drinking caffeine over a longer period of time because it releases the caffeine to your system more gradually, which will help you to maintain your energy rather than spiking and crashing.
5 – Shower Cleanly
Perhaps this sounds like an obvious point, or even redundant. But most people choose to really get themselves clean once a day, either at night or in the morning; additional showers are just to wake up, do your hair, shave, or whatever else. Here we’re recommending to really focus on getting clean with your morning shower. There’s just an inexplicable refreshed feeling you get when you really clean up in the shower, and nothing gets you more ready to tackle the day ahead.