Most people struggle first thing in the morning, however there are a few things you should never do in the morning.
We often start our day on autopilot and go through our daily morning routine, not really thinking of our wellbeing.
Once you get yourself into a good morning routine, you will find your mood will improve, and have more energy for the day ahead.
Not every morning will be perfect, but if you avoid certain bad habits, and create good habits, you will find a better start to the day.
Here are 11 tips for better mornings
1. Don’t snooze your alarm clock
When you hear your alarm clock go off in the morning, refrain from hitting the snooze button.
According to studies, when you do this you are more likely to go into a deeper sleep and will leave you feeling groggy.
So when your alarm goes off the first time, you are woken in a lighter sleep, this is the time to get up.
This will also increase your self discipline, by creating a good positive habit.
2. Stretch your body
During your nights sleep your spinal discs absorb fluid as a part of natural rehydration process.
This will cause your discs to expand, and this is actually why you could be a few centimeters taller in the morning.
However this limits the movement of the vertebrae and causes the spine to stiffen.
Stretching or bending to far when you first wake up, could potentially damage your body.
So if you find yourself waking up in the fetal position, stretch out your body gently while you’re still in bed.
According to research, people who wake up with their arms in a v-shape tend to be happier people.
While people who wake in the fetal position tend to wake up more stressed out.
Stretching first thing not just increases flexibility, but improves circulation and relieves tension.
3. Don’t drink coffee
Many of us like to have coffee to wake us up in the morning, but if you can wait a while before you do so.
Drinking coffee first thing will increase your cortisol levels, however the actual process of waking increases cortisol naturally anyway.
So drinking a coffee will just make you extra agitated and hyper alert, and this will just confuse your natural cortisol monitoring system.
Leading you to crash later in the day, so try to have your first coffee a bit later in the day to stop this happening.
Another reason to not go straight for the coffee is that being asleep for seven to eight hours without a drink, your body needs to hydrate.
So instead of a coffee, drink water, as this will also get your metabolism working, and flush out your liver.
Drinking water first thing also can help with constipation and prevent UTIs, help with weight loss, and boost your immune system.
4. Not making your bed
Making your bed first thing in the morning helps to form good habits, and is associated with increased productivity throughout the rest of the day.
In fact making your bed is a keystone habit that causes you to create future habits to take hold.
5. Leaving your curtains closed
Early morning sunlight sets our circadian clock, and increase our natural release of cortisol.
If you get out of bed and remain in the dark, it sends a signal to the brain that it is still nighttime.
This will keep you feeling groggy and not as alert as you should be, and not in a good mood.
Opening your curtains or blinds in the morning will have the opposite effect, making you feel more energized, alert and in a better mood.
However if you get up before sunrise, don’t forget to turn the lights on instead.
6. Having a hot shower
If you have a hot shower in the morning to start your day, think again.
The heat from the shower tells your nervous system that its time to relax, and for your heartbeat to slow down.
As a result, you will feel calmer and become more sleepy.
If you want to start your day off with a shower, have a cold shower to make you feel more awake.
This might take some getting use too, but the benefits are enormous.
It will release the hormone adrenaline, giving you more energy for the day ahead, as well as boosting your mood.
Cold showers can flood your body with the feel-good endorphins.
7. Don’t watch TV
Are you one of those people who turns on the TV in the morning while you get ready?
Turning the TV on is just noise, and watching it can be very negative and will increase cortisol levels
This isn’t a healthy start to the day, especially after you have had a restful nights sleep.
Leave your TV switched off, and have a healthy quiet time to maintain a peaceful and calm moment for long as possible before the day begins.
8. Don’t plan your day ahead
When you first wake up, for the first hour use this time as a form of moving meditation, and don’t think of what lies ahead in the day.
Forget about your tasks, deadlines or pressures of work just temporarily and enjoy the morning.
Be mindful while you prepare yourself for the day ahead while brushing your teeth, taking your shower and eating your breakfast.
Think of the people and the things in your life that your are grateful for.
9. Don’t check your phone
Most of us sleep with our phones in the bedroom, either under our pillow or on the bedside table.
Resist the urge to look at your phone for the first hour of waking as you will need that time to really wake up.
Because if you come out of a relaxed sleep, then you bombard yourself with too much stimulus, your body will become stressed.
Get yourself prepared for the day ahead before you even look at your phone.
Take your shower, get dressed and eat your breakfast before you look at your phone, as your mind will be more alert and focused.
Social media, emails, texts, surfing the web and voice mails can all wait until your mind is truly awake.
10. Don’t avoid exercise
We all know exercise is good for our health and wellbeing, and adding it to our morning routine is very beneficial.
Choosing to include an exercise practice in the morning is easier to maintain then if left until the end of the day.
When you exercise in the morning, it tends to be easier to stick to, as you do it before other distraction of the day begins.
However if you leave it until the end of the day, chances are you might not even be bothered, as you might be worn out from the days events.
Or unforseen circumstances and distractions from the day make exercise impossible, or less attractive.
11. Brushing your teeth after breakfast
If you brush your teeth straight after your breakfast, you might think this will clean off all the stuff from your meal.
This however is counter active, as brushing right after eating can do more harm than good.
When you eat, the bacteria that is produced can damage the enamel of your teeth.
So if you brush your teeth while in a weekend state, you can actually brush away the enamel from the surface of your teeth.
So brush your teeth after you rise but before you eat.
Then after you eat, floss your teeth and rinse with water to make your mouth feel fresh.
If you would rather brush after breakfast, do so after about half an hour later after eating.
These are just a few suggestions to start your day on a great footing, and hopefully will transform your life for the better.
Its your choice!