I used to love consuming lists. The folks putting them together always have the best of intentions: to help me streamline my processes, and make my life better. Eventually, I got to the point where every list had a list, and those lists had lists too. There were too many rabbit holes to find myself lost in, so I quit the lists.
Every once in awhile, I will check in on a list article. I’m not trying to learn anything new, in most cases I’m looking to see if the person writing the article is out to lunch, or their dialled into the subject they’ve created a list about.
I checked in with this one, “10 things to do in the morning to make your day better.” turns out, I do almost all of these – though I don’t necessarily do all of them in the morning. The following list is culled from an article on business insider… You can read it here… but here is the synthesized version:
- Go for a quick walk — Natural light resets your internal clock for a new day, giving you an energy boost, and walking also helps keep you healthy.
- Make your bed — It’s a small thing, but it gives you a sense of accomplishment that sets the tone for the day.
- Drink a glass of water — Start the day hydrated.
- Read a book — Begins the day with a calm, quiet activity before its stresses start.
- Write down “three good things” — It’s usually suggested to do this at night, writing down three good things from the day, which has been found to increase happiness. But you can do it in the morning, looking back on the day before.
- Get some caffeine — That alertness boost you get from caffeine will last for five to six hours.
- Do a tiny task you’d otherwise dread all day — You won’t have to think about it during the day and will come home to a more relaxed evening.
- Clear your mind — Meditation has been found to have many benefits.
- Plan out your goals for the day — Make a specific list of realistic goals and how you’re going to achieve them, which increases your chances of success at getting them done.
- Talk to someone you love –– Social connection is good for our health. Spend a few minutes talking to a family member or friend, in person if they live with you or by phone if they don’t.
Here’s how I measure up to this list:
- Go for a quick walk — I don’t typically leave the house without a shower, so I don’t do this. I have been known to do some yoga first thing in the morning though.
- Make your bed — this is probably carried over from childhood, but I’ve always made my bed as soon as I get up. No matter what happens in a day, I always started with a “win.” If you’re the kind of person that likes the idea of a made bed, but can’t bring yourself to do it, get your spouse on board with the idea, then start getting up before them.
- Drink a glass of water — it didn’t take too long to learn that I need to drink water after doing morning yoga, and not before.
- Read a book — This one is not typically a morning activity for me, but I read at the end of the day after putting away my phone for the evening.
- Write down “three good things” — I’ve used a product called The Five Minute Journal. It is valuable when you are intensely honest with it and use it consistently, as you can really track how your emotions map to the rest of your life.
- Get some caffeine — I start my day with coffee, and usually just coffee until after lunch time. I’ve been experimenting with a product called BulletProof Coffee
- Do a tiny task you’d otherwise dread all day — I don’t restrict this to morning, or my home environment. I keep it simple: “Do something everyday that scares you.”
- Clear your mind — Meditation is a regular for me – Upon waking and before bed.
- Plan out your goals for the day — This is one place I still use lists. I write out my most important tasks for tomorrow – today. This way I have fresh perspective when I get down to it.
- Talk to someone you love — I make a point of getting up early so I can accomplish my morning routines before anyone else is up. It really frees me to spend some quality time with family early in the day.
Is there something you do in the morning that isn’t on this list? Post it in the comments.