You’ve probably read in just as many articles as I have about how necessary it is to have a solid morning routine if you want to set yourself up for a successful day. And this has always really bothered me, because for the past two years I have had no routine.

It wasn’t so much the lack of routine that bothered me, but I knew that getting home from the hotel at midnight and waking up at 5 to train someone wasn’t a recipe for long-term success. On days I wasn’t training I was reading emails while I was still in bed.

So when I made the switch to being fully self-employed, I was so excited to develop a morning routine to start my day off on the right foot.

Except I didn’t.

I felt just as busy, if not more busy than when I was working two jobs. I was still reading emails in bed and there were still late nights and early mornings. I had decided to move my own workouts to the afternoon to break up my workday a bit, so I wasn’t even starting my day off with a good sweat.

After the first month I started to feel the burnout kicking in again, so I knew I needed to make a change. I decided to start waking up 30 minutes earlier than usual, which sometimes meant a 4:30 wakeup call, and I immediately got dressed, put on an inspirational podcast, and went for a 30 minute walk on the treadmill.

morning routine

My new morning companions!

There have been a few mornings in the past month where I’ve hit snooze one too many times and missed my walk, but I’ve managed to get this in for the majority of my work week and it has made a HUGE difference. Especially in my creativity and productivity.

I’m a total Type A girl and my brain is always ON. During these mornings with my podcasts I forced myself to not think about business. No thinking about my to-do list. No remembering emails I needed to write or blog posts I needed to share.

And the funny thing is, once I started turning my brain off to all these other things, my creative juices started flowing. Out of nowhere, the answer to a business problem I had been struggling with popped into my head. Mantras and positive affirmations started making their way in to my brain. And I had to start bringing a notepad with me so I could write down ideas that came to my mind so I could think about them further later on.

 Learn My Top 5 Inspirational Podcasts

Now I get that the idea of waking up 30 minutes early can seem overwhelming. It’s getting cold and not everyone has access to a treadmill or wants to go for a walk in the dark. I feel ya! But whether it’s a 5-minute morning routine or a 30-minute morning routine, I highly recommend creating one so you can start your day off on the right foot.

Some of the benefits of a morning routine include:

  • Reduced anxiety. Feeling overwhelmed by all the demands in your inbox before you’re even out of bed? Feeling bad about your life as you scroll through the amazing depictions of others’ lives on social media? Creating a morning routine that doesn’t involve email or Facebook can combat that!

 

  • Increased productivity. Even if your morning routine involves crossing the most important thing off of your to-do list, you begin your day on a PROACTIVE note as opposed to REACTING to the needs of others.

 

  • Improved health. Starting your day with a walk, a workout, or even 5 minutes of gratitude journalling can do wonders for your physical and mental health.

 

  Convinced you need a morning routine yet? If so, here are 3 tips for creating your own!

evolutionbyariana.com-3  

1. Be realistic about your mornings.  Do you already wake up early to get to work? Do you have kids who like to get up at the crack of dawn? While a 30-minute morning routine may not be in the cards for you (yet), you can set yourself up for success by committing to take 5 minutes to yourself to do some stretches, some journalling, or even meditation every single day. Baby steps!

2. Do something that inspires you.  Do you feel amazing after practicing yoga? Do you like to read inspiring articles? How about listening to some feel-good podcasts? When we start our day off on an inspired note, we are more likely to take action throughout the rest of the day.  

Learn My Top 5 Inspirational Podcasts

3. Modify other areas of your life. 

Most things that are worth having require at least a little effort on our part. You may need to adjust your night time routine to get yourself in bed a bit earlier. Maybe you’ll have to let your kids or partner know about your intentions and help them understand why this time is important to you. And you may have to remind yourself why this is important to you on those mornings you just don’t want to get out of bed 😉

Set yourself up for #success by creating a morning routine with these 3 tips! via @arianafotinakis #healthyliving Click To Tweet

Do you have a morning routine? If so, what do you typically do? And if not, what’s keeping you from creating one?

Showing 38 comments
  • Hil
    Reply

    I love #1, my baby was up at 3:30 today, there is no time for me lol! Not even a shower, but hopefully at some point there will be a minute here or there for me.

    • Ariana
      Reply

      Haha WOW that’s an early wakeup call! Your alone-time minutes will come!

  • Shannon
    Reply

    A great read! I definitely think have a morning routine is beneficial and will definitely help set the mood for the rest of the day. If something in my morning routine gets messed up I always end up feeling super rushed the rest of the day.

    Shannon
    Clothes & Quotes

    • Ariana
      Reply

      I completely agree, Shannon! Those rushed mornings make for day that’s totally off kilter.

  • Jenny
    Reply

    I am desperately trying to get myself to get up and go workout in the morning.
    I am a big fan of podcasts during workouts now only if I could get up and get going before 6 am.

    xoxo, Jenny

    • Ariana
      Reply

      It is tough to make the switch to early morning workouts…don’t give up!

      What podcasts do you like to listen to? I am always looking for new inspiration!

  • Nicole @ Fitful Focus
    Reply

    Great tips! I always feel so much better and less stressed when I get my butt up and workout first thing. Otherwise, I worry all day about if I’m going to be able to get my workout in after work. It’s hard to motivate myself to get out of bed in the morning, but it’s harder to convince myself to go to the gym after a long day. Plus, I’m always more energized and in a better mood when I get my workout in first thing :).

    • Ariana
      Reply

      Yes! You totally hit the nail on the head 😀

  • Tianna
    Reply

    thanks for these tips! Seriously, not a morning person AT ALL. I need all the help I can get lol

    stop by and chat with me 🙂 http://StorybookApothecary.com

    • Ariana
      Reply

      Haha, well I hope they come in handy for you! 🙂

  • Lindsay AFM
    Reply

    These are great tips! I need to be better at sticking with a routine.

    • Ariana
      Reply

      Just take it one step at a time….incorporating things you enjoy into your routine helps make it easier!

  • Reply

    A morning routine is important to me as well and it really helps me focus. I am always in awe of people who get up so so early. I would not be a happy camper getting up at 4:30

    • Ariana
      Reply

      Great! What does your morning routine consist of?

      I can’t always say I enjoy waking up at 4:30…but I don’t dislike it haha.

  • Sharon @ Harp of Birmingham
    Reply

    I so relate to this! I’ve recently begun “running” my dog instead of walking her in the mornings–it gets me smiling and energetic, both of which are changing the way I approach each day. Your tips are great–thanks for sharing them!

    • Ariana
      Reply

      You’re so welcome! I love how you’ve noticed the energy from your morning routine translate into the rest of your day. Props to you!

  • Kate @KateMovingForward
    Reply

    I agree if I can get up 15-20 minutes earlier and get my coffee, read my Bible I always have a better start to my day. I struggle to get up early enough to get a workout in first thing, but I do love it when I do.

    • Ariana
      Reply

      That sounds like a great way to start your day! Keep working at those morning workouts..they will come! 🙂

  • Reply

    I am definitely a morning person but my kids get up so early that it’s impossible to get up earlier than them anymore. When they have a 5 am wakeup, I can’t get myself out of bed earlier!! It’s a hard balance!

    • Ariana
      Reply

      Wow you’ve got early risers for kids! I can imagine that would be tough to wake up earlier than them…hopefully they start sleeping in soon 😉

  • Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home
    Reply

    I’m super organized in the morning–I have 2 teen boys to get ready for school and I’m a morning exerciser! Plus there are blog posts to publish and emails to check. It’s definitely an exercise in balance! But I’m good at getting it all done.

    • Ariana
      Reply

      WOW sounds like you accomplish a lot in your morning! Good for you!

  • Carmy
    Reply

    I ALWAYS try to get up early to establish a routine but the bed is just so cozy and inviting…

    • Ariana
      Reply

      Haha I agree. It can definitely be tough this time of year to get up early!

  • Kristen
    Reply

    Great tips! I definitely need a more legit morning routine that gets me energized and refocused for the day ahead. I love that you suggested starting with 5 minutes. I think even I could do that!

    • Ariana
      Reply

      That’s great! Give it a shot and let me know how it goes for you! 🙂

  • jill conyers
    Reply

    I love love my morning routine!

    • Ariana
      Reply

      Fantastic! What does yours consist of?

  • Janice @ Fitness Cheerleader
    Reply

    I have a morning routine 2-3 times a week (I get up and run 5 miles with my running buddies before work), but on those other 4 days I sleep in. I’ve been wanting to figure out something for those other days, thanks for the tips!

    • Ariana
      Reply

      Woohoo! 5 miles before work! That’s awesome! Let me know how those other tips treat you 🙂

  • Kathryn @ Dancing to Running
    Reply

    Having a set morning routine definitely helps me get out the door in a more efficient manner. I get up at 4:45 in order to get to work on time, and at that early hour I definitely need my routine in place.

    • Ariana
      Reply

      I agree! There’s no time for messing around that early in the morning!

  • Sandra Laflamme
    Reply

    Mornings are so hard for me. I just have such a hard time getting out of my warm and cozy bed. I strive to change this but so far have come up short. These are great tips!

    • Ariana
      Reply

      Warm and cozy beds can be so tempting! Let me know how these tips help! 🙂

  • Mimi Rose
    Reply

    I love morning routines – when I’m constantly on the road and I don’t stick to a routine, I can feel my mind cluttering up for the rest of the day. I especially loved your advice for finding something that inspires you. I can’t think of a better way to wake up! 🙂

    • Ariana
      Reply

      I can imagine regularly being out on the road would be tough!

  • Diane
    Reply

    I definitely need a morning routine! Nice to know I’m not alone in my disarray. Morning routine is going to be my #1 goal for the new year (need to get started now if I’m gonna make it). Thanks for sharing! 😀

    • Ariana
      Reply

      You can do this! Give these tips a shot and let me know how they go for you!

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