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My Morning Routine

My Morning Routine

About a year ago I made shifts in my life that upset some of my routines. I wanted my morning routine to reflect the evolution I had experienced in my life, so I made a change there, too.

When engaged in productivity coaching for executives, I’m often asked to help insert routines and good habits for healthy lifestyle into daily living. Where I’ve found the most successful is hooking the new habit onto an existing one to create a routine. Another success component, if you’ve got the luxury–work to establish the habit in a new setting where your existing habits don’t live.

So that’s how I approached my own pursuit for healthier living. In October when I traveled away from Chicago for a week I set out to establish my new morning routine–hooking new habits to the existing ones.

The Habit Sandwich

I was already in the habit of waking up, using the bathroom, and then brushing my teeth without interruption. Though you may think I’m making too much of what feel like necessities, just go with me for a moment here. I added to the habit sandwich of those three ingredients, guzzling 20 ounces of water (less than 1 minute) directly after the teeth brushing and meditating (15 minutes) directly after the hydration. No stops for checking my phone. No lingering in front of the closet to change my outfit. (Eventually) only small talk with the others in my household, as they’re old enough to fend for themselves and they (now) understand my morning routine requires silence.

Combining these habits into a routine requiring one single slice of time helps me to strike them all from the list every day. At first the water part felt like a chore. Now I crave the replenishment. At times the meditation feels like a challenge, yet I’ve invested in Andy at Headspace to help me to close my eyes…and then the guided 15 minutes are quick to pass.

What’s your morning routine? How did you convince yourself to establish it?

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