Why Morning Routines are the Secret Ingredient

I'm sure you've heard over and over again about how important starting your morning off right is, but I've truly experienced the difference. When I roll out of bed at 8:00am every day, jump in the shower, grab some healthy breakfast, and sit down with a cup of coffee and plenty of time to scour my social media sites before heading off to class or work I literally feel like I could conquer the world.

Morning routines are the secret ingredient to the perfect morning and the perfect rest of your day. It took me a little while to really figure out what could work in my lifestyle and how I would transition each morning routine for my ever changing day to day schedule, but once I did I was getting more done during my days, making more time to relax, and feeling infinitely less stressed.

I am a college student, and that typically means late nights doing homework, studying hard, or hanging out with friends. And then, waking up for early classes one day and sleeping in for evening classes the next. Everything I do changes from day to day because I have yet to get a 9 to 5 job that stays consistent, but finding a morning routine was what set me on the right path.

So here's my morning routine:

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I found that I needed a plan for when I would wake up and rush out to an early class, and when I didn't have a class until 2:00pm and could relax and work from home, so I created two different morning routines. There were also things that I just couldn't avoid (like taking care of my puppies, or grabbing something to eat), so I made sure they were always in my schedule and unavoidable.

I also like to workout in the mornings if I have time. I haven't been able to work it in to my definitive schedule yet, but it just goes to show that it's always a process. I also like to make sure to check my meal plan and schedule for that day ahead the night before and then double check in the morning--being prepared is the secret ingredient.

Getting things to run smoother in the morning so that things can run smoother during the day is the goal of creating a morning routine. Everyone's methods, needs, and practices are not going to be the same--your routine should be individual to you. Since I can't just spell out what you need to do to have a happy healthy morning, I've provided some tips on how to make an effective morning routine.

Know what you need to do.

Creating a morning routine is only effective if you feel like you can accomplish things in an autopilot manner. The key to a workable morning routine is allowing enough time for the things that need to be done. If all you need to do is get up, get dress, grab breakfast, and head out the door, then allot the necessary time and sleep in as much as possible. But if you know you would be happier and feel more accomplished if you woke up just a smidgen earlier and read a chapter in a book before heading off to a stressful work environment, then do that (but remember to always get your eight hours of sleep)!

Keep it simple.

My routine is pretty in-depth, but I have had some time to plan and work with it in order to get it exactly how I want it. The first step, however, is to create a simple routine that cannot fail. Then as you continue doing your routine on a day to day basis, pay attention to what you've been adding in and still having time to accomplish everything--those things can be written in to your schedule permanently.

Always eat breakfast.

No doubt, eating breakfast is the healthiest thing you can do in the morning. I like to grab a bagel and a green smoothie (if I have time), or even an over-easy egg with cheese, almonds, and some fruit (if I'm feeling like being a chef). Whatever I do, I make sure to eat breakfast and you should too!

Prepare in advance.

This is the KEY. I lay out my clothes, make sure that my bag is packed, and plan on what I'm going to eat for breakfast all the night before. This makes my morning so simple with no thinking because literally everything is there for me. I can relax and only think about the day ahead (work or school) and not have to worry about the moment of getting ready and waking up.

I could have listed a million scholarly articles that show how effective good morning routines are to the rest of your day. They are seriously the secret ingredient. But instead, I wanted to share with you my own personal experiences, tips, and tricks. I hope you liked it--leave a comment below letting me know how you plan your mornings!