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Five Minute Morning Habits To Bring Focus To Your Day

Five minutes may seem fleeting, but they can set your intentions for the day

How do you usually begin your day?

Do you press the snooze button multiple times, then have to rush out of bed to prepare for your day?
Do you wake up full of anxiety and worry?
Do you wake up unmotivated, not wanting ever to leave your bed?
Do you wake up excited to start a brand new day?

For many, it is hard to get out of bed and to enter into your daily routine. Sometimes throwing the covers over your head and snuggling up into a warm, soft bed seems much better than facing reality, but what if we all adopted a few five-minute morning routines that made getting out of bed an exciting start to our day?

Silent stretching: Whether it is on your yoga mat or in your bed, spend five minutes in the morning stretching out your body while taking big deep breaths in and out. Close your eyes set a mantra for the day, and awaken your physical body by stretching yourself out, one muscle at a time.

Shower power: Jumping into the shower in the morning is often rushed, but what if you took an extra five minutes to enjoy your shower. Close your eyes, and you let the hot water wash over your body. Then, indulge in a good smelling, foaming body wash or scrub, sing, play music and imagine washing away your sleepiness and re-energizing your body for the rest of the day.

Allow Mother Nature into your morning: Whether it is sitting on your porch in the sunshine, going for a 5-minute walk to take out the trash, stretching that five minutes into a 20-minute walk, or going for a run outside; spending time in nature in the morning is a restorative power that can help you be ready for your day.

Listen to music: Spending 5 minutes listening to your favorite song, favorite playlist, or favorite radio station can boost your mood to start your day. Music is healing, and it can make you smile inside and stir up warm memories.

Enjoy your food (and coffee): We often are so rushed in the morning that IF we eat breakfast, we take three bites as we head out the door and down our coffee in the car. What if you spent a few minutes each morning sitting down and enjoying your breakfast and coffee. After all, breakfast is your first meal of the day and provides you with the energy to complete your daily tasks. Enjoy your breakfast, savor every bite, and engage in mindful eating as you notice how the food looks, smells, and tastes with each bite.

Write down your daily goals: We live such busy lives with so many tasks that seem never to get done. Spend a few minutes each morning writing down what you want to accomplish for the day. This can include work tasks, household chores, personal tasks. Once you have a list of goals written down, they often become more attainable when you set your mind to them.

Anchor your daily routine by starting one morning chore: Whether it is emptying the dishwasher, taking out the trash, folding clothes, or washing the bathroom mirror, a straightforward morning chore can not only help you declutter your home, but it can also motivate you as you have one less task to do at the end of the day. In addition, starting your morning with intention and purposeful acts can help motivate you throughout the day.

Express gratitude: Spend five minutes each morning expressing gratitude for the things you have in your life. Whether it is a life full of friends and family who love you, your health, a roof over your head, or a warm bed to sleep in, actively expressing gratitude each morning can help ground you and appreciate the gift of the present.

Connect with a loved one: Send a quick text message or email to someone in your life and let you know you are thinking about them. Practicing kindness in the morning towards others can come back to you ten-fold throughout the day.

Exercise increases endorphins: One of my favorite things to do in the morning is going for a run, hiking, or ski before starting work. Physical activity helps clear and settle the mind, and it also increases endorphins which elicit pleasure. So daily exercise is not only good for your physical body but also good for the mind.

More from Kristen Fuller, M.D.
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