Image: Career Addict

Early Morning Tricks to Help Inspire and Motivate You

Image: Career Addict
Image: Waking Up

Editor’s Note: The following post is courtesy of Modernize, written by Danielle Hegedus.

I am not a morning person. I’m one of those crazy people who decides to stay up all night, rather than rely on my alarm clock (and willpower) to get up and ready for a 6am flight. Apparently though, cranky mornings (a thrill for my loved ones, I assure you) marred by frantically navigating traffic only to get to the office and realize I am wearing one navy and one black shoe, do not have to be my lot in life. There is hope!

According to Laura Vanderkam (author, What the Most Successful People do Before Breakfast):

“Learning to use our mornings well is, in our distracted world, what separates achievement from madness. Before the rest of the world is eating breakfast, the most successful people have already scored daily victories that are advancing them toward the lives they want.”

Whether you want to make the most of those precious uninterrupted morning hours to become healthier, get ahead at work, or indulge a hobby, here are some tips to help get you there.

These simple changes to your morning routine can help you feel healthier and happier, just don’t hit the snooze button! After reading these tips, head to Modernize for more advice on adopting a healthier and happier lifestyle.

Drink Warm Lemon Water

After eight hours of sleep, your body is going to be dehydrated. Start your day out right by drinking at least 16oz of water. Adding lemon to warm water can also significantly aids your digestive process to help you eliminate waste in the morning. Lemon is also rich in vitamin C, which can boost your immune system. Wash your lemon thoroughly, but keep the rind on the lemon as the pectic fiber in the skin serves as a powerful anti-bacterial, while also promoting colon health.

Lemon water image
Image: Healthy Food House

Dedicate 10-20 Minutes to Meditation

Start your day with meditation and you’ll never have an excuse for missing this important daily practice. Meditation doesn’t require a dedicated space or special clothing; all you need is a place in your home where you can be uninterrupted for 10-20 minutes at the start of your day. Find a comfortable position to sit in, but maintain good posture so that you don’t fall back asleep! Take this time to be mindful of your breathing, thoughts, and emotions. If you find you have a hard time focusing, try playing some soothing music or even listening to a guided meditation.

When I have trouble quieting the noise in my head, I repeat a mantra, “Everyday in every way, I am getting better and better.” You’ll notice a marked decrease in your stress throughout the day, as you have started your day in a relaxed, focused manner. Meditation has also been shown to regulate your blood pressure, boost your immune system, and help ward off depression and anxiety.

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Image: MindBodyGreen / Shutterstock

Take a New Approach to Your To-Do List

I am a to-do list junkie, but they always kind of bum me out as I am usually adding more items before I complete the bulk of the tasks on the list. Take a different approach to your to-do list to help you feel excited about the day ahead of you. Before you go to bed at night, take a look at your schedule for the next day or week ahead and write a small list of things that you are looking forward to–lunch with a friend, yoga class, a trip to the dog park.

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Image: Be the True You

Another great way to boost your self-esteem in the morning is a trick that a social worker taught me years ago. Create a birthday list. If you are 34 years old, write down 34 accomplishments or things that you like about yourself. Believe me, it feels daunting at the beginning, but once you get into it, you’ll be amazed at all that you have already accomplished in life and that you fail to give yourself credit for on a regular basis. Take a look at your birthday list before you leave the house in the morning. You don’t have to read the entire thing, but take a look at a few items and start the day feeling good about yourself.

Eat a Healthy Breakfast

You know how we’re trying to dispel that myth that you aren’t a morning person? Yet! Same goes for those people who say they just aren’t hungry in the morning. Regularly eating breakfast, even something small (a combination of lean protein, healthy fat, and a simple carb) will help your body adapt to a more healthy eating schedule and reduce insulin spikes that make you groggy and lead you to candy or highly caffeinated and sugary beverages for an energy boost.

I like breakfast that I can make the night before like chia pudding covered in berries and almonds. I also scramble eggs with fresh veggies and cook in muffin tins. I can freeze my egg muffins and microwave them in the morning as I head out the door.

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Image: Simply Happenstance

Spread a Little Sunshine

I have found that while I may let things slide when it comes to myself, I never want to let down my friends or family. Start your day by doing something kind for someone you love. Take your dog to the park early so that you get in a great round of fetch before he’s home all day alone by himself. Send a text to a friend who is a single parent to let her know how much you admire how she is raising her child. Write a quick note to your grandparents and drop it in the mail on your way to work. If you have the money in your budget, hop online and send flowers to your mom. Making someone else smile and feel appreciated and loved is one of the best ways to start your day. Hopefully all of that loving energy you put out into the world will come back your way, too!

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Image: Purina Dog Chow

Disclaimer: Any views or opinions presented in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of PLUS Model Magazine.