Morning Routine – How to Set the Day for Happiness

How one starts their day can impact how the rest of their day goes. It can determine how productive, stressful, enjoyable, or rushed it may be. 

Having a morning routine can set your day up for success and productivity. It’s a set of activities that you do every morning to take care of yourself before you start the main activity of your days, such as school or work. 

With a morning routine in place, your days can go from stressful and chaotic, to scheduled and enjoyable. That being said, setting up a morning routine that works for you can be a bit of a challenge. That’s why I would like to share some insights with you on how to get started, so you can find success in your morning routine. 

What Is a Morning Routine?

Do you have the experience of rushing out the door each morning to go spend hours at your job only to come home and feel pressed to make dinner, do the dishes, etc? Maybe your days feel so packed that you wonder when you’ll have any time to spend for yourself. 

Man brushing teeth - Morning Routine - Gone Minimal
Man brushing teeth

That’s when a morning routine comes in. A morning routine is setting up a schedule each morning with activities that will help you navigate your day. 

By forming a morning routine where you consistently wake up at the same time, it will help you develop a regular sleep cycle, which will lead to more productivity, as well as better mental and physical health.

The truth is, everyone already has a morning routine in place. It’s simply the activities you do each morning, such as getting up, putting your day clothes on, and making a cup of coffee. To start, it’s helpful to reflect on what your morning habits already are, and honestly ask yourself if it helps you have a more successful or productive day. 

If your morning routine looks like snoozing the alarm a few times, then grumpily getting out of bed to stare at your phone for twenty minutes, you might want to consider improving your morning routine. Also, I’ve been there! That’s why I know that having a morning routine that makes you feel settled, connected, and ready to start the day is SO beneficial. 

Morning stretch and exercise - Morning Routine - Gone Minimal
Morning stretch and exercise

What Are the Scientific Benefits of a Morning Routine?

When one develops a morning routine, it comes with a host of benefits that have been backed by science. To start, simply developing a routine can lead to a healthier lifestyle and habits. This concept is explored in-depth in this study from NCBI that talks about the importance of creating a routine. 

While it doesn’t specifically talk about a morning routine, it shines a light upon the fact that when there is a positive routine in someones life, it can help them live a healthier lifestyle. There is also growing evidence that when there is a regular sleep pattern in somones life, it leads to greater productivity. Check out this study from Nature’s Scientific Reports that shows students who have an irregular sleep pattern consistently make lower grades than those with a regular sleep pattern. 

The same sleep study also shows that when you have an irregular sleep pattern, it is more difficult to wake up in the morning – leading to hit the snooze button on repeat. 

By forming a morning routine where you consistently wake up at the same time, it will help you develop a regular sleep cycle, which will lead to more productivity, as well as better mental and physical health. These studies also confirm that when you have a regular morning routine where you make healthy choices, it will help you implement a healthier lifestyle. Thanks science! 

Morning coffee - Morning Routine - Gone Minimal
Morning tea

How to Create a Morning Routine

The first step to making a morning routine that you’ll stick to and actually enjoy, is to ask yourself what your ideal morning would look like. Here are some questions to help you get started: 

  1. Would you like more time for yourself? If you live a busy lifestyle and have others to take care of, you may find that it’s hard to set aside time for yourself. If that is the case, try adding some self-care practices into your morning routine. 
  2. Would you like to exercise more? The morning can be a great time to move your body and start developing a healthy exerise routine. 
  3. Would you simply like more time to get ready? Having more time to get your things together without feeling rushed can make your day that much better. 

When we can trust ourselves to commit to one thing, it’s easier to start incorporating other things.

If you have to be at work at a specific time in the morning, and you find that you’re rushing out the door, it may be time to set your alarm clock to an earlier time. This will allow more flexibility in how you choose to spend your morning. This is also probably the hardest step, because you can’t do anything else in your routine if you don’t give yourself enough time to do them. 

Waking up - Morning Routine - Gone Minimal
Waking up

Waking up at a specific time each morning takes discipline, motivation, and commitment. If it’s helpful for you, make a list of the reasons why you want to get up earlier and why you want more of a routine. Keep this list nearby and read it before you go to bed. This will help you have more motivation to leave the comfort of your bed and start your day. 

Start Small 

If you want to have a successful morning routine, then start small. Try adding in one thing you would like to incorporate into your mornings that you feel confident you can do. This can be as simple as taking five minutes to stare out the window at the beauty of the morning. When we can trust ourselves to commit to one thing, it’s easier to start incorporating other things. 

Let’s say someone consistently has chaotic, rushed mornings. Then, all of a sudden, they get this drive to have a super structured morning routine with five new things they want to do. Sure, it may work for a couple of days, but more than likely that person will become overwhelmed and fall back into old patterns. Why? Because it’s much more difficult to form a daily routine when it involves drastic change. Our minds become overwhelmed and we’ll lose the drive to stick to the routine.

Sunrise - Morning Routing - Gone Minimal

By simply adding one thing at a time that one sticks to, it will develop confidence and trust in oneself to commit to a routine. From there, one can add more things to their routine as they see fit. 

Morning Routine Ideas

A good morning routine can set a positive tone for the day ahead and help you start your day with intention and productivity. It’s important to tailor your morning routine to your individual preferences and needs. Experiment with different activities and find what works best for you to promote a positive mindset and set the tone for a great day.

Here are some things you can try adding to your morning routine for a more productive and stress-free day: 

  • Watch the sunrise.
  • Take a few moments to breath deeply as you stare out the window at the beauty of the day. 
  • Think about/write down what you’re grateful for. 
  • Speak or write down a blessing for the day.
  • Stretch/do yoga.
  • Exercise.
  • Eat a healthy breakfast. 
  • Go for a walk.
  • Journal. 
  • Read. 
  • Write down your goals for the day. 
  • Meditate/pray/visit your altar. 
Read a book over coffee - Morning Routine - Gone Minimal
Read a book over coffee

Morning Routine List

Now that you know how you want to spend your morning, put it on the schedule or make a list! Here’s an example of my ideal morning (ideal meaning I am also trying to develop a consistent morning routine – we’re all human). 

6:00 am – Wake up, get dressed, drink water, make the bed.

6:15-6:45 – Stretch/Spend time with partner

6:45-7:00 – Animal chores 

7:00-7:30 – Make breakfast/help partner get ready for work 

7:30-9:00 – Make coffe and journal/read/do yoga

9:00 – Start working 

As you can see, I give myself plenty of ‘free time’ to do something I enjoy or to move my body through yoga. Personally, I’ve never enjoyed having to do the exact same thing everyday. Instead, I prefer to follow my flow/excitement and see where my morning takes me. 

Types of Morning Routines based on Age

Whichever phase of life you’re in is going to affect what your morning routine looks like. Nonetheless, it’s important to keep in mind that it’s about structuring the morning in a way that works best for you, no matter the phase of life you’re in. 

A delicious breakfast - Morning Routine - Gone Minimal
A delicious breakfast

Morning Routine for Teens

One thing that helped improve my mornings as a teenager was setting out my outfit the night before. That way, as soon as I got out of bed I knew what I was going to wear and didn’t have to scrounge through my closet for a nice outfit. 

Give yourself plenty of time to get ready in the morning, which might mean waking up earlier. That way you feel refreshed and ready to face the school day. It’s important to eat a light breakfast and drink plenty of water in the morning to help you focus and awaken your mind. 

Morning Routine for Children

When you develop a morning routine for your child, it can help them prepare for the day. Children thrive with routines, which means less tantrums and stress in the morning. Try to keep breakfast around the same time everyday so they start to know the routine. Set time for play and a consistent time for naps. 

As a parent, you may find it highly beneficial to develop more of a morning routine with your little one. Waking up, getting dressed, eating breakfast, playtime, and nap time can all be incorporated into a schedule.

Do a crossword or play a game - Morning Routine - Gone Minimal
Do a crossword or play a game

Developing a Morning Routine for Productivity 

It’s becoming common knowledge that the most successful people have a strong morning routine. From entrepreneurs to millionaires and even billionaires, they all stick to a routine that works for them. What are the common denomenators? Discipline and waking up early. 

If you’re wanting to develop a morning routine to help your productivity, it’s important to first develop a healthy sleep schedule. If you’re staying up late every night it’s going to be much more difficult to wake up earlier. 

You also have to practice discipline and have a clear understanding with yourself as to why you want to develop a morning routine. Ultimately, it will be because you want to better your life, be more productive, and pursue your goals. 

Make a list - Morning Routine - Gone Minimal
Make a list

Here is an example of what a productive morning routine could look like: 

  • Wake up early.
  • Drink a full glass of water.
  • Exercise/stretch/do yoga.
  • Get ready.
  • Write/reflect on your goals.
  • Eat a nutritious and healthy breakfast. 
  • Do something that will help you move in the direction of your goals.
    • Learn something new, read a book on the topic, write about it. 

Related Insights

What Is the Best Early Morning Habit for Success?

Get up when your alarm goes off. Don’t spend a lot of time on your phone going through social media, reading news, or checking emails. Drink water as soon you’re awake (it will help you wake up). 

Do Successful People Have Morning Routines?

Yes. Because having a morning routine leads to more productivity, the majority of successful people have a morning routine they faithfully stick to. 

I found this video to be really inspiring and motivating for sticking to a morning routine.

Activities That Are a Part of Peoples Morning Routine

Everyone is going to start their day a little different. This is because we all have our own unique responsibilities, goals, passions, and jobs. To confirm this, I asked some of my friends and family to list a few things they do every morning as part of their own morning routine. Here’s what I found out: 

Morning Routine ActivityTally of Family/Friends
Drink Water3
Brush Teeth3
Have breakfast4
Put clothes on2
Feed animals2
Show affection to my partner1
Check/water plants1
Make bed1
Ask body what resources it needs1
Take necessary resources/vitamins2
Make coffee/tea2
Make lunch for day1
Clean kitty litter1
Look outside/admire beauty of the day2
Read 1

Other Resources:

If you’re looking to live a more productive life, or are simply tired of rushing out the door every morning, it’s time to develop a morning routine. Though it may be challenging at first, soon it will become a normal part of your day, and you’ll even look forward to your mornings. What is one thing, starting tomorrow morning, you would like to do or change in your routine? Try it out, stay consistent, and see how it benefits your day to day life! 

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