Morning routine for energy and productivity
On Friday I shared my evening and morning routine with my mailing list and had such a great response to them that I thought I’d share them on the blog too!
This week has been all about reinstating my old morning routine and night-time habits that I used to do regularly but which totally went out the window during lockdown. With the kids going back to school, some semblance of a routine starting, as well as having a lot on my plate at the moment, I thought this week was the perfect time to try to get back into a groove with this. It’s been ace, has made all the difference to me this week and I wish I’d started it up again sooner.
So here they are!
1) I get up an hour before the kids do
I set the alarm and make sure my phone’s on the other side of the room so I have to haul my haggard old carcass out of bed to turn it off. As hideous as it is for those first few seconds, it’s wonderful being able to start the day with a decent chunk of peaceful solitude instead of waking to noisy chaos and Spiderman being thrust into my face, and I feel so much calmer for the rest of the day as a result.
2) Morning Pages
I spend 15 minutes doing Morning Pages as soon as I wake up. These are from The Artist’s Way and is basically a form of stream-of-consciousness journalling. What I write is 99% absolute bollocks (I can’t think of anything more cringe-worthy than the thought of anyone reading it) but it’s amazing for clearing your head at the start of the day and giving you clarity and focus – better having all that nonsense out on the paper than cluttering up your head. Amongst the daft 99% is often 1% that’s a little golden nugget – I’ve had loads of little unexpected brain-waves this way. The easiest way I can describe this practice is that it feels like I’ve given my brain a nice refreshing shower 🤣.
After doing the Morning Pages I then meditate for 10 minutes. I do it in the morning because if I try to do it at night-time I ALWAYS fall asleep after about 30 seconds 🤣. I use the Calm app because I’m really crap at meditating and need someone to help me do it. I’ve always been put off guided meditations because of the annoying overly calm voices and pretentious waffle, but Jeff Warren who does some of the Calm ones is brill and really down to earth.
With up to half an hour left before the kids get up, I then plan my day, both work and personal – exactly what I’m going to do and when I’m going to do it. I’m horrendously easily distracted so if I don’t do this I’m guaranteed to meander through the day pretty aimlessly and achieve very little. I have a free daily productivity checklist that you can download if that helps.
I make myself get in bed at 9.30 and PLUG THE PHONE IN ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ROOM. I’m a lazy bugger and having to get out of bed is a massive deterrent – it guarantees that I won’t keep checking it and mindlessly scrolling for hours like I’ve been doing for most of lockdown. I then read a book for half an hour until 10pm when I make myself turn the light out. This feels sooooo early for me as I’m a bit of a night owl and for months have rarely been in bed before midnight, but the difference it’s made to my mood and energy levels is ace. I also bloody love reading so it’s been a real treat to have a decent chunk of time every night to curl up with a good book.
Obviously I don’t bother with all this at the weekend or if something specific comes up, but as a general weekday routine it’s been a total godsend. I hope these help! Do you have any morning routines or evening habits that you couldn’t be without?
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Manchester family photographer, for down-to-earth, adventurous, big-hearted families all across the North West, London and UK
Creative, documentary family photography in Manchester, Liverpool, Lancashire, Cheshire, Yorkshire, London
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