Thursday, January 21, 2016

9 things to do before 9am

Starting your day off right is so important.

Most mornings, after the alarm on my smartphone mercilessly taunts me, I just want to close my eyes and doze off again. Which puts me in a ugh-I-don't-want-to-face-any-responsibilities kind of mood. That's why this year I want to be more intentional from the moment I wake up. I put this list of tools together and perhaps it might help you, too.

9 things to do before 9am:

wake up
This means getting a good night's rest. I usually need eight hours of sleep to feel rested the next morning. Some things that help me to relax before bed: a few tiny dollops of this lavender-infused balm on my wrists and behind my ears, a soothing pillow spray, and a good book.

express gratitude
Say a prayer or meditate on something you're thankful for ("Thank you for giving me another day in which to breathe, express myself and give love to others," "Thank you for this warm, comfy bed,"). I find when I do this first thing in the morning, it really helps me feel positive about the day ahead of me.

make your bed
Even if I don't accomplish much that day, at least I can say with pride that I made my bed. Trust me, you'll feel really good about yourself after you've smoothed out those sheets and carefully placed that blanket/duvet cover. 

put your best face forward
For me this means brushing my teeth, washing my face, combing my hair and putting makeup on. When I'm working from home I make it a point to get out of my pajamas and wear "outside clothes." Oh, and wearing a bra is a must.

eat protein
They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day. I would take that a step further and say protein is the most important part of breakfast. My power food is eggs. I eat one every morning (fried, scrambled or hard-boiled with chimichurri sauce). It keeps me full longer than other breakfast-type foods (cereal, bagels, toast, etc) which helps me to concentrate and be more productive.

refrain from social media
No Facebook, Instagram or Twitter before breakfast. Period.

make a to-do list
I always keep a to-do list next to my computer. I write daily items, weekly items and then long-term vision stuff. Putting pen to paper and articulating my ideas keeps me focused. Plus, it feels pretty good to cross items off that list (but keeping in mind I won't necessarily check everything off the list that day -- I rarely do!).

Three times in and out.

go get 'em!
Stuart Smalley always said, "Because I'm good enough, I'm smart enough and doggone it, people like me!"

Photo via Jess + Co.