Do you ever have one of those days where things just don’t start off well? And no matter what you do you can’t turn it around?
Or maybe you don’t even realize your day is heading in a not-so-positive trajectory. And then before you know it you’re snapping at everyone you see and muttering about much of a Monday this Wednesday is.
Being intentional about your mornings can make a huge difference in how your day goes.
Why Do Mornings Matter?
It’s really tough to get out of a funk once you’re in it.
If you’re running late and you burn your toast and you forget your child’s backpack and you misplace your work presentation all before 9 am, you’ve already set a negative tone for your day.
Having an intentional routine helps you control what’s happening. You can do things that make you feel better, which kicks things off on a positive note.
Having a positive, intentional morning doesn’t stop negative things from popping up during the day. But you might be better prepared to handle them if you’re already in a good mood.
Ideas for Making Your Mornings Better
How should you start your day? It comes down to what you find uplifting and positive. Here are some things that I try to do each morning to set a positive intention.
1. Use an essential oil Roller Bottle
One of my favorite ways to get a happy boost first thing in the morning is with a roller bottle of essential oils.
Essential oils are extracted from actual plants (assuming you use a trustworthy brand). And plants can have a powerful effect on the body.
Many essential oils have an uplifting effect. Just by smelling them, you get an energy boost.
Citrus oils are my favorite for the morning. I have a roller bottle next to my bed of lemon + grapefruit essential oils with fractionated coconut oil as a carrier oil. (It’s a good idea to dilute essential oils when you’re applying them to your skin since they’re so concentrated.)
As soon as I wake up, I roll some onto my wrists to help me wake up and feel positive.
2. Make the bed
Okay, confession. I never used to make my bed. I was in the “why does it matter because I’m getting back in it tonight anyway” camp.
But it really does make a huge difference.
It’s one thing you can check off your to-do list first thing in the morning. See? You’re already accomplishing things. Look at you go!
It might even help you feel motivated to keep doing more things.
The other thing I like about making my bed is how tidy it makes the bedroom look. (I mean, as long as you can ignore the pile of clothes on my dresser still waiting to be put away.)
I work from home, so I’m home basically all the time. It’s nice every time I walk into my bedroom to see a neatly made bed.
I’m not naturally a neat, tidy person. It really takes a lot of effort for me.
But I notice a huge difference in how I feel when my home is clean. I feel like I can focus better and have more motivation.
Try it for a week and see if it makes a difference for you!
3. get ready
If we don’t have anywhere to go for the day, I’m often tempted to just lounge in my jammies a little longer than I should. I’ll start my day and get things done. But I don’t do anything else with myself.
Lately, I’ve been trying to shower as soon as I get up. I don’t wash my hair every day, but I do try to shower.
It helps me feel refreshed and helps wake me up.
Plus, I feel a little more energized and productive when I’ve showered and gotten dressed for the day.
4. diffuse essential oils
Now that I’ve showered and dressed for the day, I like to get my diffuser going. It’s quick and easy. And it can make a big difference in the mood.
You can make it even easier on yourself by filling up your diffuser at night before you go to bed. Then, in the morning, just turn it on and you’re ready to go.
Like I mentioned in the roller bottle section, essential oils can really change the mood of the room. I choose my oils based on what I need.
Most of the time, I like an energizing, uplifting blend. Otherwise, I find myself almost falling asleep mid-afternoon!
I usually include some type of citrus in my blends. Lemon + orange are two of my favorites.
Peppermint is also a good, uplifting oil to use in the morning. It gets your energy high right out of the gate.
One of my favorite blends lately has been lemon + valor (a blend from Young Living) + peppermint. My whole family loves it!
Diffusing is an awesome way to use oils for lots of reasons.
It makes your house smell amazing.
It’s super easy to set up. Just add water and several drops of your favorite oils.
You get all of the benefits of the oils (uplifting, calming, etc).
It’s much healthier than synthetic fragrances in most household air fresheners. They’re completely manufactured with chemicals. They might smell good to you, but they often have harmful effects.
The other great thing about diffusing is that it’s really forgiving. Just start experimenting with different combinations.
I usually use between 8 and 10 drops of essential oil each time I fill my diffuser with water.
Diffusers come in different sizes, so you might need to add more or less depending on the size.
It’s also a matter of personal preference. If you want a stronger smell, add more drops. If you like a lighter fragrance, add fewer drops.
5. Take supplements
I’ve always been bad about taking supplements. I buy them. Then I forget to take them.
I’m vitamin D deficient. My doctor prescribed vitamin D for me. I took it for about a month. By a few months later, I had forgotten I was even diagnosed with a deficiency.
I don’t know what it’s so difficult for me.
I finally got myself one of those daily pill cases. My kids call it my old lady pill case. Thanks, kids. So good for the self-esteem!
I now take my vitamin D daily. I also take magnesium (it helps me avoid headaches), a B supplement, an omega fatty acid supplement, and a probiotic.
Helpful hint if you have trouble swallowing pills: take them with applesauce, yogurt, pudding, or something similar. I always have trouble with gel caps for some reason. They always feel like they get stuck in my esophagus. I started taking them with applesauce and haven’t had an issue since!
Supplements can give you energy and address specific health concerns you have. I’m not telling you that you should or shouldn’t take supplements. I’m not telling you which ones to take. But I find it’s helpful for me to take my supplements each morning to feel better for the day.
6. Eat breakfast
Are you a breakfast eater? I am sometimes. And other times not.
I hate to admit it, but sometimes I’ll go the easy route and eat a slice of leftover pizza. I know, I know. So not healthy.
But when I start my day off with a healthy breakfast, I always feel better. It also makes it a little easier to stay on track with healthier eating throughout the day. If I start the day with a slice of pizza, it’s kind of hard to motivate myself to eat a salad for lunch. Know what I mean?
I’ve found for me one of the easiest things for breakfast is fruit and hard-boiled eggs. I can make the eggs ahead of time, so breakfast is basically no prep.
Smoothies are another easy one. I like them because I can sip them while I get started on work. I don’t have to sit down and eat a real meal like a civilized person. Haha!
If I liked oatmeal, I feel like overnight oats would be another good breakfast option for me. But I just can’t get down with the oatmeal for some reason. Is it just me?
7. Write affirmations
How often do you pump yourself up with positive thoughts?
I challenge you to start each day this way.
You can do it a few different ways.
One option is to write positive things about yourself. If you’re not sure what to write, do this little exercise. Ask close friends or family members what they love best about you. You might be surprised what people see in you and what attracts them to you.
Now, write those things about yourself. So if someone tells you they love the way you listen to them without judging, write, “I listen without judging.”
If someone thinks you light up the room with your energy, write, “I energize the room with my positive attitude.”
Another strategy is to focus on your goals. This can really help with motivation.
Think about the things you want to achieve. Maybe you want to start your own business so you can quit your day job. Or you want to get out of debt.
Whatever those dreams are, write them down like they’ve already happened. You might write, “My business makes enough money to replace my old salary,” or, “I am living completely debt-free.”
Don’t worry that it hasn’t actually happened yet. Framing as if it has can help keep you motivated and give you a positive start to your day.
You can also write down positive quotes or positive things you want to focus on that day. This helps set the intentions for the day.
8. Make a to-do List
Does anyone else get immense satisfaction from crossing things off of a to-do list? I love it. So satisfying.
A list also helps me focus my attention. Without one, I sort of know what I need to do, but I don’t have much direction. So I might get stuff accomplished but probably not as much done as I could with more direction.
When it comes to to-do lists, you can approach them in lots of different ways. It really comes down to what works best for you.
I’ve tried a few different to-do list apps. They’re okay. But ticking a box on an app isn’t quite as satisfying for me as crossing off things on a physical list.
The number of items you put on your list is also up to you. Some people like to only have a few things on their lists so they don’t feel overwhelmed. Other people like to put every little thing on the list so they have more to cross off.
I suggest testing out different ways of doing your to-do list to find what works for you.
Create Your Morning Routine
Not everything on my morning routine list might work for you. It’s all about creating a motivating routine that gets you in the right headspace from the start. How do you kick off your day in a positive way?