By Olivia Shiels
Monday May 26, 2014
We all know the feeling. The disturbing buzz of your alarm goes off, aggressively rousing you from a pleasant dream. You lie there for a moment as the reality of the busy day ahead sets in. The list of things to do run through your mind before you’ve even left bed. The demands of the day seem too great and the warmth of your bed tempts you to just roll over and push the snooze button.
I understand this well as it’s a routine I’ve fallen into before. Feeling overwhelmed by the day ahead is a downright unpleasant feeling and a negative habit to get into. The first waking hours are precious and can determine how the rest of the day will map out. It’s amazing the difference it can make by changing few aspects of your morning routine.
What is the best time to wake up?
It’s important to set your body clock by rising at the same time each morning. For most people, waking at 6 o’clock offers the best results. Of course, this won’t work unless you are tucked up at reasonable hour too. Make sure you are in bed with your phone, laptop and any other technology switched off by 10 o’clock at night.
Exercise is key
Cold, dark mornings in Winter can make it particularly difficult to convince yourself to work out in the morning. Telling yourself you will feel better after you exercise sometimes doesn’t cut it. Set yourself personal goals and creative ways to motivate you. Maybe you want to feel great in a new dress for the weekend, or you could reward yourself with a new breakfast idea post-workout. Whatever it is, find a way to make yourself look forward to getting up.
Eat a healthy breakfast
A nutritious, well-balanced breakfast is essential to starting your day well. Your body needs to be fuelled to be able to tackle the tasks ahead! Steer clear of sugary cereals and spreads to avoid an energy slump before lunchtime. Choosing high fibre foods such as oats, whole meal bread and fruits will keep you full and powered throughout the day. If you’re not a breakfast person, try a fresh fruit smoothie. Smoothie mixes can be prepared ahead and frozen to save time. Try this delicious and easy banana, almond and date shake for a sweet start.
Visualize the day
This is one of the simplest methods you can adopt to ensure you achieve all that you want. Close your eyes for a moment and imagine how you would like the day to unfold. Think of the most important things you would like to do. This will give you focus and help keep you on track. The quiet hours of the morning allow you to map out your day without interruption and are often one of the only times you can reflect in silence.
Knock over difficult tasks first
There is usually one thing we have to do each day that we don’t look forward. The best thing you can do to minimise the stress and procrastination involved in avoiding it is to get it out of the way early. Knock over your least desirable tasks first thing and you won’t spend the rest of the day worrying about it. You are more likely to be ‘switched on’ and able to handle problems in the morning rather than at 3 o’clock in the afternoon when you could be lacking energy.