The first post in this series was about Habits & goals, if you missed that post, I invite you to have a read, it’s entitled How To BackTrack & Finish 2000 Strong! [Habits & Goals]. There are a few things we can implement to set ourselves up for a successful day. The gurus all speak about creating a morning routine and I have found this to work extremely well for me. To help you create a morning routine that works for you, I have pleasure in sharing a daily morning routine checklist with you.
This checklist is a guide, please adjust it in any way that will work best for you. Remember, this is about creating a life that works for you so that you can backtrack and finish 2000 Strong!
If you haven’t already signed up with this series, please do so now and avoid missing out on any of the valuable information the series has to offer!
Are You A Person of Routine?
To be completely frank with you, I am not great at keeping a set routine, day in and day out. I have to work very hard at convincing myself that a routine really is what works best for me. It’s as though I rebel against myself, lol!
The fact for me is that my day pans out far better if I do stick to a routine. Ironically, even when I don’t stick to my “desired routine”, I tend to follow a routine anyway, albeit a mindless one.
When I follow the mindless routine, my day generally turns out to be haphazard, meaning I do not live that day with a conscious effort and focus on the things I want to achieve and complete on that day. Make sense?
So here is what I do, and it works for me. I encourage you to find what works for you and give it a try.
- Wake up to the alarm, which is set for the same time every single morning, Monday to Friday (Saturday and Sundays I allow myself some leeway)
- Switch off the alarm, take a bathroom break
- Grab a large cup of water to hydrate first thing
- Hop back into bed with my quiet time material (currently I am working with two devotionals, one about God’s Promises and the other is about Leadership)
- Read the daily reads and pray (sometimes I journal too)
- Change into exercise clothes and head to the lounge where I workout on my stationary bicycle
- 20 minutes minimum on the bike, worship music playing and I mentally scroll through what I want to complete in that day
- Back to my bedroom, run the bath, whilst the bath is running I do arm exercises with light weights and alternate days with other exercises, core for example
- Water the garden, do a few furbaby bits and pieces, prepare my bags for work (food, water – I measure my daily intake so it’s easier for me this way – laptop etc)
- Bath and dress for work
That is literally the way I start my day. For me, it is important to take the time to focus attention on the lover of my soul. The time in prayer is spent focusing on what I have just read, learning from it, and then also praying for safety and protection for family and loved ones, wisdom for leaders (government, church, employer), and anything else I have on my heart. I have a very strong social heart so this list is usually pretty long.
Perhaps you would prefer to meditate? I see prayer and meditation as very similar, what they do is help you to begin your day focused and pro-active rather than reactive to whatever comes your way.
In case you are looking for material to start your day, I have shared two of my favourite author’s devotionals below.
Disclaimer: I am an Amazon Associate, this post may contain affiliate links. Using them gives me a small commission at no additional cost to you.
There may be other books which will work better for you, Amazon has a great range of available. Have a look through their, Daily Reads and choose the book that is best for you.
Why Create A Morning Routine?
As you have seen above, I have a very simple morning routine and it works for me. When I start my day this way (yeah, I have those days when my “spirit is willing but my flesh is weak”, haha) it helps me to have a focused mind and energized body.
We all also have days that start out with demands from family members, friends neighbours, etc. Invariably, those days rarely set me up for a day when I manage to hold focus and complete everything I plan to.
Don’t take my word for it though, let’s explore the reasons for creating a morning routine.
According to Very Well Mind:
The morning routine helps us set the tone for the day, better allowing us to control our schedules rather than our schedule controlling us. As we start each day fresh, we can better focus on what is in front of us, where to prioritize our time, and, ultimately, increase our productivity.
Here is a video shared on Science of People dot com:
You will see that different people take their own individual approach to a morning routine. One thing that a morning routine has in common, no matter how you decide to do things is this, following a morning routine helps to put you into the best mindset for the day.
This means you start your day out in a way that helps you to have the best day possible. This could be that you are energized and focused, or more intentional and peaceful – perhaps a combination of both. Whichever it is that speaks to your “best day”.
Ideas For Inclusion Into Your Morning Routine:
If you read the article at Very Well Mind and listened to the video I have included, you will have noticed that there are many different ways to start the day. The list offered below is not prescriptive, nor is it all-encompassing.
I love that we are all different and our needs and desires in life are not the same. Take your pick out of the list below and work with the elements which suit your lifestyle.
- Pray and / or meditate
- Read An Encouraging Devotional or one of the Top 10 Self Help Books
- Focus on what you are thankful for
- Visualize (I love to do this too – helps me keep my “why” front and center)
- Drink water
- Breathing exercises
- Exercise – gentle stretching or Pilates, perhaps something more energetic like a Spinning Bike or Treadmill to sweat it out
- Walk the dog and watch the excitement your furbaby displays
- Spend time in the garden listening to and watching birds
- Water the garden, nurture your seedlings
- Listen to music – soothing and gentle or upbeat to get your toes tapping (maybe even dance!)
- Spend time with your loved ones
- Take a warm shower gradually heat it up to hot and down to cold (apparently this is invigorating, not for me!)
- Enjoy a dreamy, warm bath with bath salts and lovely fragrant candles (this is more my style)
- Listen to a podcast or Tedtalk
- Play a musical instrument
- Sing (I do this a lot too – the neighbours haven’t complained … yet, lol!)
- Create something – write a poem, sketch, paint
- How about Sudoku or a crossword puzzle?
There are as many different ways to create a morning routine as there are people. We need to find and do what works best for us and our family or lifestyle.
Is there something specific that you do every morning which helps set the tone and pace for your day? I would love to have your input.
As you know, this article has been written to work hand in hand with the series I am working on currently, How To BackTrack, and Finish 2020 Strong! I also offer a morning routine Checklist in this blog, please click on the image below, it will take you to a downloadable PDF. Have fun adding in what works for you!