Improvement Journey

Creating a Healthy Morning Routine

Having a productive and generally a good day starts since the first time you open your eyes and how you treat yourself in the morning.  For most people, they have difficulties in having a quality sleep which leads to waking up late and feeling exhausted.  It is a never-ending circle, but believe it or not we are able to cut the cycle and re-established a new and healthier sleep cycle.  And that’s why it is important to have a healthy morning routine.

When I was working 10 – 12 hours a day, I came home around 9 PM.  After dinner and shower (normally around 11 PM) I was in my bed.  Not to sleep, but to “catch up” with life.  Time for checking on social media, web surfing, and sometimes to read a book.  I was tired but I would sacrifice my sleeping time in order to have what I would call it a “Me time”.

Normally I would fall asleep around 1 AM and I put 3 alarm clocks starting at 5.30 AM and ends at 6.30 AM.  I woke up after snoozing the last alarm 3 times, so I ended up late for everything.  I did my shower in a hurry, I skipped breakfast, I went into a taxi with a wet hair and no makeup, and just felt so stressed and was not ready for the day ahead.  That was my morning routine, and Boy how I regret it.

I am used to waking up around 6.30 – 7.00 AM every morning, even when I am no longer work.  Without nothing to do, it is easy to go back to sleep and wake up whenever I want.  But I don’t want to lose a good habit, so I force myself to go out of bed just like I did when I still have a job.  That was the only positive thing I did in the morning.

One day, I came across a book that made a huge impact on my life.  “The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari” by Robin Sharma, you can read my review soon in another post.   The book is not about a morning routine but one of the chapter talks about setting a goal to yourself and how to achieve it.  Whether it is a big goal or small goals like starting the morning earlier than you would normally have.

Ps: This post contains an affiliate link in which I receive a small fee should you decided to buy the products from the link above.  However, don’t let it stop you from getting lots of inspirations and motivations that this book brings.  If you choose to buy from another channel, feel free to do so.

this book is a blessing in disguise for me

I was so impressed by this book and I started to practice all of the exercises that are mentioned in the book, one of them is waking up 1 hour earlier every morning.

The next morning, I started to wake up at 5 AM (2 hours earlier than I normally do).  I created a list of activities that I want to get done in the morning and I did it for 21 days.  Because according to the book and also backed by scientific studies, that it takes 21 days to create a new habit.

I felt excited and thrilled during the first week of the routine.  The second week was the hardest week since I moved to Singapore.  Every morning I literally had to jump out of bed as soon as the alarm goes off.  I almost lose my will to continue, I was so close to giving up.  But I told myself, “just for today” each and every day of the second week.  After that, I had no problem to wake up in the morning and continue the routine.  Apparently, it is true, that it takes around 3 weeks to create a habit.

Here is the list of activities of my morning routine :

  • Wake up at 5 AM

I wake up at 5 AM because I would like to get everything done at 7 AM.  Which is around the time when my husband wakes up in the morning.

  • Walk / Jog + Grounding + Visualization which I do around the park behind my apartment for about 45 minutes

We fell in love with our apartment because it was surrounded by parks and it was situated along a river with park connections that makes it a nice place to Jog and Run (for F) and a good place to walk a dog (for me).

As for grounding + visualization technique, I will address it in my meditation routine post.

  • Meditate at least 15 minutes in the morning (but normally it takes at least 20 minutes for me) because I include praying after my meditation

If you want to read more about my meditation routine click here.  I believe it is one of the keys to a happy and balanced life.

  • Yoga for 1 hour

I like Yoga and I think Yoga is the only sport-related activities that I like.  I am not a sports girl, I dislike exercise and I do it only because it is important for physical and mental health.  But in Yoga, I found not only sweat and sour muscles but I also found challenges, a purpose, and peace as well.

  • Prepare breakfast and lunch pack for my husband

I do it as a small act of service to someone closest to me.  When we were not married and were facing a difficult time, this small act made a huge impact on our relationship.

  • Have breakfast with my husband

A quality time, even though sometimes we just ate in silence.  Enjoying the presence of each other and maybe for my husband it was because he was still waking up his brain 😊

Before we eat or drink anything else we take a glass of turmeric water with a lot of benefits including anti-inflammatory, prevents cancer, prevent heart disease, and relieve arthritis.

F has to has his Coffee in the morning and since I don’t have any habit related to food or beverages, apart from the turmeric water I just drink mineral water in the morning.

  • Journaling, include 5-minutes Journal.

I am trying to create a habit of journaling which has a lot of benefits according to science.  Since I am just starting, I want to start simple.  Luckily I found an article about the 5-minutes journal.  It is a very simple tool yet it can bring significant impact throughout your life.  It puts your life in a right perspective.  Because you will remember to be grateful, to set your state of mind on the things that will make your day great, and will prioritize the most important things on your to-do list.  You can find out more about 5-minute journal here.

One of the things that you put in the journal is what I am grateful for? I normally put “I am grateful to wake up beside my husband” or “I am grateful that I, my husband and my family are safe, healthy, and happy”.  It is a humbling task.

People will say that it is easy for me to sleep earlier to wake up earlier because I have no job nor kids to take care.  It might be true, but it doesn’t mean people with job and children can’t do it.  What you need to do is to ask yourself whether you want to have a better and healthier life?  Are you willing to make an effort and sacrifice to achieve it or not?  And YES, you can get a better life simply by waking up early.

I do have to sacrifice my evening hours to sleep earlier.  I do sacrifice the warm, soft, and comfort of my bed to get up.  To go for a jog when the world is still in slumber.  I do it every day because I gain more than what I sacrifice.

Speaking about the advantage of having a good morning routine for me:

  • I have done most of my to-do list at 7 AM.  Imagine how much time that I have to do the things I like or to work on my projects? Basically, a whole day!
  • It is easier for me to fall asleep, and I get a good quality of sleep throughout the night.
  • My body feels healthier, stronger, and energized all day.
  • I have a stronger and structured mentality.
  • I have fewer mood swings, stress, and anxiety (probably because of the meditation routine as well)
  • Basically, I am healthier and happier than I was before.

Here are some articles about the importance of morning routine that I really like :

  1. A post by Aaron Dowd
  2. How to make a good morning routine

Thank you for reading this post.  As usual, I encourage you to tell me about your morning routine and why you love it.  Or you can also tell me why you are not able to have a morning routine. Or if you have a question about my morning routine please feel free to leave a comment.

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