Make the Most of Your Morning

Having a morning routine can decrease your stress and get you moving in the right direction.

Routines are important, and something that we’ve covered a lot in this column—from making time to exercise to figuring out an optimal sleep schedule. Waking up is just as important as sleeping. The following suggestions are a few ways to make your mornings a little less painful.

Wake Naturally

Try not to hit the snooze button. It’s tempting, I know, but if you make yourself get up at the same time everyday, (yes, even on weekends), then after 30 days, you will have created a new routine. You should then be able to get up naturally and without the annoying buzzing, vibrating and dinging of an alarm clock.

Breathe

Take five minutes to do some deep breathing and set an intention for the day. Pair this with splashing a bit of cold water onto your face.

Exfoliate Your Skin

A favorite practice in my own morning routine is dry body brushing. Take a sea sponge or natural loofah and brush your entire body, moving in circles away from your heart, before you shower. This practice exfoliates the skin, detoxifies the body and, as an added bonus, reduces the appearance of dimpling in the skin. It can also promote digestion.

Try Oil Pulling

Oil pulling has become another popular morning activity and has been linked to better breath and increased dental hygiene. I suggest using coconut or sesame oil. These should be cold pressed and not refined.

Take a tablespoon and swish the oil around in your mouth. Spit into the toilet or onto paper towels; spitting the oil into your sink can clog it.

Drink Lemon Water

Another healthy practice to add to your morning routine is to drink two large glasses of lemon water. These should be room temperature and should be consumed at a rather rapid pace. This practice helps with digestion and to detoxify the body.

Additionally, if you have problems with acid reflux, try taking a shot of apple cider vinegar after your lemon water or adding it to one of the glasses. You can also make a large carafe of apple cider vinegar, water, lemon slices, and honey. If you are adding honey to this mixture, be sure to use local honey to help combat allergies.

Stick With It

As with any routine, make sure it is something you can stick with. You can add a million things to make your morning more healthy, but if you add so many that you can never get out the door, then you have merely succeeded in stressing yourself out about your health.

Pick a few things to add to your morning to make waking up a little less tiring.

About The Author

After dancing since the age of 3, Haley Greenwald-Gonella thought it was time to try a new art. In elementary school, she began playing the flute and was in the marching band in middle school and for the first two years of high school. She also played the bassoon during concert season. Dance drew Haley back while in high school.

She graduated from the University of California, Irvine, with degrees in dance and English. She recently graduated from the University of Southern California with a master’s degree in Specialized Journalism (The Arts).

Haley is also a certified registered yoga teacher with Yoga Alliance. She draws upon her dance and yoga training when it comes to all things fitness and the arts.