Anthony’s Note: This is a guest post by Courtney Carver, from Be More With Less. I had a great video chat with her about her message, and her new book, Soulful Simplicity, which just came out at the end of December. Feel free to watch the video below and then enjoy her post on morning routines.
If your mornings have turned to mush and your snooze button, coffee, and everyone else comes first, it’s time to reclaim your mornings. Don’t you feel better when you start your day with intention and direction instead of chaos and distraction?Without a consistent morning routine you might …
- be easily distracted throughout the day
- feel sluggish when you wake up
- be less present
- feel like creative flow is just out of reach
- have trouble making decisions
Whether you are starting a new morning routine or getting back on track with a new one, you don’t have to overhaul your morning or your life to get started. Instead start small.
7 small steps to get your morning routine off the ground
1 / Stop saying you aren’t a morning person. It’s a great excuse but it doesn’t matter. Start your morning routine whenever your morning starts, even if it’s in the afternoon.
2 / Gratitude stretch. Before you get out of bed, think of three things you are grateful for. Say them out loud or to yourself as you stretch your arms overhead and your toes to the end of the bed.
3 / Ignore email. Take a mini digital sabbatical for your first hour awake. Without the distraction of Facebook updates or email from your boss, you can start your day on your own terms.
4 / Go outside. Start your day with fresh air, and sunshine on your face.
5 / Go inside. Sit quietly and reflect, meditate, or pray your way. After a few minutes, ask this question, “How am I?” Then listen to your heart’s answer. That may lead to more questions and answers, but taking the time to ask yourself is really helpful, or at least it has been for me.
6 / Create a morning not to-do list. You may have more clarity on how you want to spend your morning after clearly identifying what you don’t want to do. Make a list of the things that don’t add value to your mornings.
7 / Show up. Even if you don’t do anything during your morning routine, show up for it every morning for a week. Dedicate five minutes to getting on your yoga mat, sitting at your kitchen table, on the floor next to your bed, or wherever you’d like to be. Just show up.
A consistent morning routine can …
- fuel your creativity
- strengthen your muscles
- quiet your mind
- soothe your soul
- help you focus
- alleviate decision fatigue
- make you more loving and lovable
The best thing about a morning routine is that you can start anytime and you can always come back to it. If you are ready for more energy, clarity and love, trade your snooze button for a morning routine.
Courtney Carver changed her life by simplifying it after a devastating diagnosis in 2006. She’s the founder of bemorewithless.com and minimalist fashion challenge Project 333. Learn more from her new book Soulful Simplicity published December 26 by Penguin Random House. Carver shows us the power of simplicity to improve our health, build more meaningful relationships, and relieve stress in our professional and personal lives.