Create a Morning Routine to Boost your Mental Health

by | Jun 5, 2021 | Mental Health

depression

Ever wake up in a panic from oversleeping? Your day rarely improves afterwards. Read our best advice on how you can start your day with a positive mindset.

Maybe you forgot to set your alarm or hit the snooze button too many times. Your panic sends a shot of stress hormones through your body and as you rush around getting ready for work, the stress builds.

Clearly this scenario is not the best if you struggle with mental health issues, but no one needs extra stress when we are all feeling overtired, overworked and we’re just doing our best.

Starting your morning off with a daily routine can set the tone for your days and weeks ahead.

A great morning routine can even boost your mood alleviate anxiety, combat burnout, and even improve your overall health. When we experience mornings that provide peace and calm, it can help set your priorities and allow you to have a more productive day.

But what If you’re not a morning person?

If you’re not a morning person – no worries. You do not have to get up at the crack of dawn in order to have a successful day. Here is a list to help you gain ideas for a morning routine that can give you mental health benefits.

woman in the bathroom looks at herself in the mirror

Great Mornings Start with Quality Sleep

It might seem like common sense, or maybe not, but sleep hygiene plays an important role in your mental and physical health. If you’re getting poor sleep at night then you’ll likely struggle to great a solid morning routine. So let’s start your perfect morning routine…the night before.

If you’re like most people, you probably have a busy schedule and not too much time or energy to fit new habits into your life. But trust us, this one is worth doing a little rearranging.

Short term ways to help you find a sense of calm before sleep are taking a bath or shower in warm water to relax, doing some breathing exercises or meditating before bed, and make sure to put your phone away for a minimum of 10-15 minutes before lights out.

Most people aren’t sure how many hours of sleep they require, and this differs for everyone. We recommend experimenting to see how many hours suit you best. Another great way to fall asleep faster is getting enough activity in your days, this means scheduling regular exercise into your calendar.

Ease Into the Day

Now that you’re rested and getting proper sleep. It is much easier to get out of bed when you’re not feeling rushed to start your day. You’ll feel more motivated to open your eyes and to let your body naturally wake up. It feels good to be able to lounge in bed and to take in the comfort of your space. After those few minutes of lounging, try these next few steps.

Eliminate the Clutter

Doing something as simply making your bed can help eliminate clutter from the start of your day. Another great way to eliminate clutter is to hold off on checking your phone. Phones are amazing and convenient devices, but they also provide our lives with a lot of clutter. When you start your day off by checking your phone, which gives you access to emails, social media platforms, news (both good and bad), you may feel it necessary to react to all of it. Starting the day this way puts you into a “reactive” mindset, so do your best to skip checking your phone before you’ve invested in yourself with healthier wake-up strategies.

Don’t Skip Breakfast

It doesn’t have to be a hardy meal that takes time and effort to prepare, but fueling your body with nutrients in the morning can help energize your body. If you don’t want to take the time in the morning to create a meal for yourself, you can prep something the night before, like overnight oats, which are easy to grab and go or purchase quick and easy (and healthy) breakfast options. The point is to just get something into your body that not only fuels it properly but also isn’t just a cup of joe. Coffee on an empty stomach is like pouring liquid stress into your system.

Don’t Forget the Water

Many love to start the day off with a cup (or two) of coffee, but don’t skip that morning glass of water. Hydrating your body is crucial to feeling good, so look at that morning glass of water as a way to kick-start the whole process. The benefits of drinking water are well documented and really are endless for your energy levels and physical health.

Stimulate Your Body.

You do not have to take a 5 am workout class to stimulate your body. Stimulating your body looks different for everyone. Reading is a great way to stimulate your mind while meditating and light yoga can help get juices flowing. Exercise helps to increase the production of the neurotransmitters we know as serotonin and norepinephrine. These act to enhance our body’s ability to deal with stressors that are inevitable throughout our day. Those who exercise regularly tend to be less stressed due to endorphins and are more able to maintain a balance between work and play.

Write it Down.

Some mornings may feel overwhelming when you can’t get a grasp of what you need to do that day. This can cause people to lag or procrastinate with important tasks. Creating a to-do list in the morning might help.

Your daily list allows you to check off items and tasks, giving you a sense of accomplishment. Break big items into smaller more manageable tasks and be realistic about what you can achieve in a day. The point of a morning routine is for it to start your day off mentally and physically healthy, not to add stress to your life.

7 Steps to an Ideal Morning Routine

  1. Open your curtains first thing, natural light will energize you.
  2. Put on upbeat music or sounds you enjoy.
  3. Engage in some light stretching to help release any tension that has built up through the night.
  4. Avoid social media and the zombie scroll to avoid starting your day in a reactive state.
  5. Drink some water and stay hydrated before caffeine.
  6. Eat a nourishing breakfast.
  7. Get enough sleep.

Creating and maintaining a healthy morning routine may take some trial and error, and that is okay because when you feel your confidence and energy boost, it’s well worth it.

Revisit Your Morning Ritual Once in a While

Sometimes we can outgrow daily routines and they no longer serve us, so we recommend going back and revisiting your current routines to see if there are areas that need to be adjusted or updated.

Remember you are in charge of your day, and you have the opportunity to create a healthy routine for yourself that helps you thrive and reduce stress.

If you are looking for additional ways to help you create a morning routine that benefits you both mentally and physically, reach out to Sober Life Recovery in San Diego, California. We have a dynamic team of mental health professionals who specialize in individualized mental health care for adults. Our team wants to help you become the best version of yourself. Call Sober Life Recovery today at (619) 542-9542.

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