Although our busy mornings tend to look a little different these days, they can still have a massive impact on our entire day. Once you’re able to get a better handle on your morning, you can start your day feeling like you’re in charge and ready to take on the world.
Over Easy knows just how rough mornings can be, so we’ve compiled some of the easiest hacks that you can use to help make any busy morning feel just a little more manageable so that you’re a little less likely to want to bang your head against the wall. Remember, stress doesn’t mean productivity, and you don’t have to deal with all that!
Start The Night Before
One of the best ways to have a smoother, less hectic morning is starting the night before. We know that it can be hard to tear yourself away from whatever Netflix show that you’re currently binging, but when you plan ahead, you start yourself out ahead of the game.
Instead of running around the house, hectically looking for your other shoe, your keys, or your nametag, set them out ahead of time. It’s one of the easiest hacks you can do that doesn’t cost any extra time, and you’ll roll out of bed with a much lower stress level.
Start by making a list of what you’ll need for your day, and find a convenient place to set everything out. Before you go to bed, get everything together. You may also want to set your clothes out the night before so that you don’t end up standing in front of your closet facing the eternal question—what to wear today.
If you have children, you can do the same thing for them! Make it into a game: let them pick out their own clothes, set them out, pack their backpack, etc. It’ll help them feel more in control of their day, and it will make your mornings just a little bit easier on all of you (even if they do end up wearing red stripes and green polka dots to school the next day).
Set Your Alarm A Little Earlier
Although we all need between 7 and 8 hours of sleep every single night to function at our best, setting your alarm a little bit earlier can help give you a few minutes of me-time. If you feel like you’re starting every morning out racing the clock, start with just 15 minutes. Even that small amount of time can give you an extra snooze session, a moment on the couch with a cup of coffee by yourself, or time to take a shower. When you head into your day walking instead of running, that feeling is likely to continue all day long.
In addition to setting your alarm a little earlier, you should also focus more on getting to bed at a reasonable time the night before. So many of us tend to burn the candle at both ends and take our health for granted if it means that we feel just a little bit more productive. While this can be ok in the short term, over time, it can take a serious toll on your health.
Develop a bedtime routine that you enjoy, like taking a warm bath or reading a book in bed. Turn your phone off at least 30 minutes before you go to sleep—please, we’re begging you to stop checking your email. Make your sleep restful, and your mornings will seem like a breeze.
Think About Breakfast Ahead Of Time
While we all have the best intentions for getting up in the morning and making a big breakfast, whether living alone or with a partner and children. Let’s be honest, though. When was the last time you even considered doing this in the morning?
Rushed mornings can also lead to making poor nutritional choices. With so much of our physical and mental health linked to the things that we fuel our bodies with, that last-minute run through the drive-through or the sickly-sweet toaster pastry can take a serious toll.
Instead of making another bad decision, plan out the most important meal of the day ahead of time. Fill your kitchen with healthy breakfast options that are easy to eat on the go, like Over Easy’s Peanut Butter Breakfast bars.
Stick with food that’s full of protein and not packed with sugar, dairy, and gluten to keep you feeling at your best all day long. When you have a good source of healthy, natural energy powering your body in the morning, you also don’t have to worry about a mid-morning sugar crash that can also crash your productivity. It’s a real win-win, not to mention that an option like Over Easy bars will deliver on the taste front, too.
Stay Away From Technology
Although it can feel like good self-care to lay in bed, looking at your phone in the morning, and scrolling endlessly through social media, it’s not only a giant waste of time but also a potential addiction!
Break your phone’s hold over your life, and give yourself a little more peace of mind and calm in the morning by deciding not to touch it for at least thirty minutes after you wake up. In addition to not having to look at all of those perfectly posed pictures and posts that make you automatically start to compare yourself to other people (which is a bad habit, stop that!), checking out your phone first thing also puts you right into “work mode.”
Instead of immediately going over your to-do list or stressing about that meeting you have in a few hours, spend a little time checking in with your body. Maybe do a quick yoga routine, or even just lay in bed and do a simple body-focused meditation. Your body and your mind will both thank you.
Make Coffee Easier
While coffee pods and drive-throughs may seem like the easiest way to get your morning coffee fix, there is an easier and often cheaper one right under your nose!
Instead of spending all that money, and potentially harming the environment, invest in a coffee maker with a timer function. All you need to do is prep your coffee before you go to bed (you can include this in your prep routine!), set the timer, and you’ll be able to wake up to the smell of freshly brewed coffee without having to do any work in the morning.
Then you can just grab a cup and go, instead of waiting in line or end up with piles and piles of plastic pods in your garbage. It’s a great, environmentally friendly, inexpensive way to still get all the physical and emotional benefits of coffee without all the issues associated with making it happen in the morning.
Develop A Plan For The Day
Much like setting out your clothes can help you ease into the day, taking the time to develop a better plan for your day overall can help extend that feeling for the entire day.
If you know ahead of time what you need to accomplish and how you can best do that, you’ll be able to make sure you give yourself all the tools and opportunities to be successful. You can create an agenda for the day, so you know where you need to be and at what time, as well as making sure you don’t miss anything like picking up the cat from the vet or forgetting about that important Zoom call.
You don’t have to micromanage your time down to the second, but creating an overall outline for your day is an incredibly easy hack to make your mornings and your entire day much easier to handle.
Play Some Music!
Simply put, music is good for you. It can help reduce pain, calm you down, cheer you up, and help you focus. When you create a morning playlist full of “feel good” songs that you know will lift your spirits and put you in a positive frame of mind for the day, you’re doing yourself a huge favor.
Why move sluggishly around the house when you can dance it out?
Cut Yourself Some Slack
While this isn’t necessarily a hack, it is an important reminder that you don’t need to be perfect! As much as you plan ahead, some mornings are just going to feel stressful and not go as smoothly as you planned for them to go. That’s just life!
Remember that you are, in fact, a human being. Take a deep breath, get yourself back on track, and give yourself grace and understanding. It happens to the best of us, and it doesn’t make you any less of a great partner, employee, parent, or person.
Mornings don’t have to be hectic (although we’re not promising that you’re going to somehow turn into a zen goddess, either). With the help of a quick, healthy, and nutritious jumpstart by Over Easy and a few morning hacks, you’ll transition easily from overwhelmed and constantly late to operating at top-level efficiency. As we always say, you’ll become a morning person, whether you like it or not.
You deserve mornings that don’t make you want to pull your hair out, and they’re much more simple to achieve than most people think. Don’t resign yourself to a life of stress; start your mornings right.