A woman sits on her bed in the morning, looking out the window

How Practicing a Morning Routine Can Build You Up for Success

How Practicing a Morning Routine Can Build You Up for Success

We only have about 25,000 mornings in our adult life. 

Imagine if at least half of those mornings were set with an intention – how much more  productive would we be as professionals and as individuals? 

Creating a morning routine is essential in living a grounded, productive, and successful life. An  earlier start to the morning allows for and encourages mental and physical wellness, as well as  peak productivity. Some of the world’s most creative and successful people rely on their  morning routine to ensure their days are as fruitful and productive as possible. The morning  habits of the most successful entrepreneurs include waking up early and consistently,  meditating, exercising, eating breakfast, working deliberately, reading, journaling, and setting  goals and priorities for the day. 

Highly successful women such as Oprah Winfrey, Marie Kondo, and Arianna Huffington kickstart  their morning routines with inspiring strategies from the book My Morning Routine by  Benjamin Spall. Oprah Winfrey starts her morning through appreciation and practicing  gratitude. Marie Kondo, the author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, wakes up around  6:30 every morning while opening her windows for fresh air to create a peaceful ambiance to  begin her morning routine. Kondo enjoys warm drinks such as hot water or herbal tea before  eating a well-balanced breakfast. Sometimes, she even practices yoga. Arianna Huffington,  founder of The Huffington Post and Thrive Global, who grounds her morning routine in getting  eight hours of sleep at night, doesn’t even need an alarm to wake up. She emphasizes that a big  part of her morning routine is centered around what she doesn’t do. In other words, once she is  awake, she takes a minute to breathe deeply and set an intention for the day, as opposed to  checking her emails or looking at her phone as soon as she wakes. Huffington tells Oprah.com  that she began to take her morning routine seriously when she fainted from sleep deprivation  and exhaustion, hit her head on her desk, and broke her cheekbone. She even notes that she  treats her transition to sleep as a “sacrosanct ritual.” 

While a healthy routine might be the key to success, committing to a ritual and creating a  routine may be the most challenging part. Here are some tips for maintaining a morning routine  in addition to morning must-haves of successful people. 

1. Choose a set time to wake up every day. 

Waking up early gives you more time and you can spend this time cultivating other morning  habits. Research shows that waking up at the same time every day gives your body and mind  more sleep consistency, which is important for establishing and maintaining your circadian rhythm. Choosing a time to wake up every day and establishing rhythm also makes it easier to  wake up in the morning. 

Don’t hit the snooze button! Success begins the moment you get out of bed. According to sleep  medicine physician W. Christopher Winter, every time you wake up and hit snooze, you enter a  new sleep cycle. The extra few minutes of sleep that you get after hitting the snooze button  might actually leave you feeling more tired. 

2. Meditate and practice gratitude. 

A major part of my morning routine is getting my mind right before I start my day. Through  meditation and practicing gratitude, I am able to ground myself and focus on my intentions for  the day, as well as my goals for the future. It gives me time to think about who I am and how I  want to improve as an individual. Meditation is a guided, thoughtful practice that forces you to  become aware of your inner thoughts and feelings. It is essential for clearing your mind,  relieving stress, and starting your day in the right mindset. In addition, practicing gratitude – especially when combined with meditation - 

A tool that I use to consistently meditate and practice gratitude every morning is a daily  meditation book. I recommend Journey to the Heart by Melody Beattie, a book that provides  warm daily reflections that helps individuals learn to connect even more deeply with  themselves. The daily mediations consist of about 2-3 pages and they are fairly quick to read,  allowing some time for contemplation, meditation, and practicing gratitude. A daily meditation  book is an effective tool to be consistent in practicing meditation because it guides you day-to day on what to reflect on. 

3. Exercise. 

Exercise is essential for both physical and mental well-being. A study from the University of  Bristol found that people who exercise daily were more likely to have more energy and a more  positive outlook compared to those who didn’t. Adding exercise to your morning routine can  allow for mental clarity that lasts throughout the day as well. Having a quick sweat session at  the start of your day can make you feel more motivated, happier, and more energetic for the  rest of your day. It is easier to be consistent with a morning workout regimen when you are  doing something you enjoy doing – whether that be a cycling class, running, or even a daily  walk to your favorite coffee shop or park. Exercising in the morning can also create a feeling of  accomplishment, leaving you motivated to tackle your goals and tasks throughout the day. 

4. Eat a well-balanced breakfast. 

It can be tempting to skip the most important meal of the day when you are running late for  class or work. If you are well-rested and waking up consistently every morning, you won’t be in  a rush to get ready and run out the door without eating breakfast, which will provide you with energy at the start of your day. Oatmeal with fruit, eggs, avocado toast, yogurt with berries, or  a protein smoothie could be great breakfast options to fuel the beginning of your day. 

5. Set goals and priorities. 

You can’t achieve your goals if you do not set any. The most successful entrepreneurs and  professionals all can agree that goals are vital if you want to succeed, being that they help set  direction and motivate you to greater achievement. Smaller goals that you set and attack on a  day-to-day basis are just as important as stronger long-term goals. Spending a part of your  morning brainstorming and writing down the most important goals and priorities, such as  creating a realistic “To-Do” list, can increase the likelihood of those tasks and goals being  completed throughout the day. 

6. Be consistent. 

It is important to develop a morning routine that you can maintain, even on the weekends. This  will allow you to be consistent with a morning routine, which will overall increase your  productivity. When creating a morning routine, it is good to experiment and make small  changes according to your needs. It is also important to establish a routine that is congruent  with your goals and intentions, especially in regard to career or life goals. 

Morning routines may sound mundane and to some, a waste of time. Establishing and  maintaining a morning routine has allowed me to become the best version of myself, as well as  increased my levels of motivation towards my academic, professional, fitness, and personal  goals. Morning routines have the power to benefit and support the goals of ambitious women,  in addition to encouraging women to become the best versions of themselves on the road to  success. 


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Brokaw, Ken. “The Importance of Establishing a Morning Routine.” Forbes, Forbes Magazine, 31  May 2018, https://www.forbes.com/sites/theyec/2018/05/30/the-importance-of-establishing a-morning-routine/. 

Clarke, Jodi. “Benefits of a Morning Routine.” Verywell Mind, Verywell Mind, 17 Sept. 2020,  https://www.verywellmind.com/morning-routine-4174576. 

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Spall, Benjamin, and Michael Xander. My Morning Routine: How Successful People Start Every  Day Inspired. Portfolio/Penguin, 2018. 

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