If you are anything like me, mornings are not a fun experience. Often they are scattered, overwhelming and frustrating as I scramble around the house looking for my things, picking out my outfit for the day and trying to get myself out the door on time. Thankfully, some things can be done to make mornings less stressful and help make the rest of the day stress-free.
1. Prepare the Night Before
In the evenings before bed, I try to take time to get myself ready for the next day. This includes me picking out my outfit and shoes for the next day and putting them in a place that is easily accessible. I also take time to gather anything I may need the next day. This usually includes me packing up my purse, backpack and gym bag. It makes a huge difference for me to have my gym bag packed the night before so I can just grab it and go in the morning.
It also makes life easier later in the day so that I do not have to worry about coming home before heading to the gym. The last thing I prep for the next day is my lunch. If I am planning to take lunch to work, I will get everything put together so that I can just grab and go. By having everything put together, I can take my time getting ready in the morning and just grab everything else as I head out the door.
2. 30 Minutes Makes All the Difference
On an average day, I try to wake up at least thirty minutes before I need to be awake. This extra thirty minutes will allow me to take time getting any miscellaneous chores done that I did not complete the day before. This also helps me in the off chance that there is a lot of traffic. I have a minimum of a 35-minute drive to work and if the weather is bad, that time increases. By getting up thirty minutes earlier, it gives me some wiggle room for when I need leave the house and will make for a less stressful drive into work.
3. Check the Calendar
The first thing I do in the morning is to check my work calendar and my calendar. This helps me make a plan for the day. Do I have any late meetings at work? If I do, I try to throw some dinner in the crockpot, so my evening is not as cramped. Do my husband or I have plans for the evening? If so, I coordinate with him, so we know what is going on for both of us. This also helps us figure out what time we need to aim to leave work so we can get to our evening activities on time.
4. Tasks for the Day
The best piece of advice I have ever received for relieving stress is to set three goals for the day. What three things will I be working on for today?By limiting it to three, it will reduce the feeling of being overwhelmed. If you think about it from this perspective, at the end of the week, you will have completed twenty-one of your items. If you get all three tasks done for the day, you will not only feel better, but you will feel accomplished for meeting your goals. The best part is this: you can always add more items.
5. Practice Gratefulness
Another great practice that has been recommended to me is to keep track of your blessings. The idea is to take time every morning to write down the five things you are grateful for that day. This helps start your day with a positive mindset and will help you keep a positive attitude all day.
6. Exercise First
This is one thing that I wish that I could do, but I cannot physically get myself up early enough to do this. However, for me, I know that I would be better off if I worked out first thing in the morning. I know that I would feel much better knowing that I got my workout done first. Often when I am leaving work, I often find myself wanting to just go home instead of going to the gym. If I had started the day off with a workout, I would have the flexibility to go home and not feel bad about it.
7. Enjoy your Coffee
If you are a coffee drinker, take time in the morning to enjoy your coffee. If you don’t drink coffee, take time to enjoy your breakfast, your glass of water, of anything you do in the morning that you are not taking enough time to enjoy. By taking time to enjoy your morning treat, you will feel so much better for the rest of the day.