Mornings are important, especially for young entrepreneurs. How you wake up and get started can set the tone for the entire rest of your day. Make sure you are prep for success by creating a regular morning routine and following it.
While it might appear that we’ve listed a lot of things to remember in the morning, the truth is that many of these suggestions can be planned in advance. In as little as 15 minutes, even the groggiest non-morning person can power themselves up to crush the day ahead. All it takes is a little bit of motivation and a lot of preparedness.
PREPARE THE NIGHT BEFORE
As you get ready for bed, make sure your morning self will thank you. Do you have the ingredients you need for a healthy breakfast tomorrow? Are your earbuds untangled or charged and ready to grab?
While you are preparing, make a list of at least 3 things you need to accomplish in the morning before you head out the door or sign in online. Those things can include something as simple as “pet the dog” or as important as “10 minutes of exercise.”
Your morning self will also thank you by simplifying decisions such as what to wear and setting those clothes out the night before.
GET GOOD SLEEP
A productive morning begins with a good night’s sleep. Aim for six to eight hours per night. We know that young entrepreneurs have a lot on their plates, but success means prioritizing self-care – which includes sleep.
Wind-down before bed. Sleep in a dark, quiet, and cool room. If you’ve followed the step above by preparing for your morning, you should feel much calmer and ready for rest.
If sleep doesn’t come easy, consider using a meditation app to help soothe your body and mind into restfulness, or reading a book that’s not too taxing on your brain.
WAKE UP EARLY
To start your morning right, set an alarm for the same time each morning – and disable the snooze button. Most smartphones have an alarm that can be set for every weekday, and you can set the right ring tone for yourself depending on whether you prefer to be gently woken up or need a screaming bell in your ear. Apps such as Loud Alarm Clock are designed to wake up even the heaviest sleepers.
Not a morning person? Try waking up just 15 minutes earlier than you normally do. Young entrepreneurs know the benefits of self-discipline. You’ll be surprised at how much you can accomplish in that short time.
TURN ON THE LIGHT
Open your curtains or shutters and let the morning light flood into your room. Turn on your bedside lamp. Head into a part of the house where you can turn on plenty of bright lights. Light tells your mind and body that it’s time to wake up. Even if you wake up so early that it’s still dark outside, bright, artificial light indoors will trick your brain into wakefulness.
BUILD A MORNING RITUAL
Get yourself into the habit of a regular morning ritual. This can, of course, be adjusted as necessary, but create a baseline for yourself. Your morning ritual can include easy things like petting your dog, touching your toes for 10 seconds, or anything else that will make you feel good about getting your day started.
Your morning ritual should not include checking email or phone messages; in fact, aside from apps that include a to-do list, you should not be “online” at all just yet.
DRINK A GLASS OF COLD WATER
Your body loses water as you sleep, so you probably wake up thirsty. Keep a glass of water by your bed or reach for a water bottle as soon as you make it to the kitchen.
According to Business Insider, successful CEOs drink a full glass of water – hot or cold – first thing in the morning (before, or instead of, coffee) in order to get their brains on track, boost their immune systems, and increase their alertness for the rest of the day. For young entrepreneurs, this is priceless advice.
MOVE YOUR BODY
Stretch. Run. Take your dog for a walk. Do some yoga. Whatever it is, move your body around and “get the blood pumping,” as they say. Exercise is good for both body and mind.
You don’t need a gym membership or fancy equipment in order to exercise each morning. Push-ups, sit-ups, and jumping jacks require very little space and zero equipment. YouTube offers countless free videos for everything from a quick morning yoga stretch to chair cardio. Whatever your physical abilities, there is something you can do to get yourself moving every morning.
EAT A HEALTHY BREAKFAST
Junk food for breakfast may be delicious, quick, and easy, but it’s a guaranteed way to crash later. By preparing the night before, you should have plenty of fresh fruits available in the morning, as well as whole grains and proteins. Mixing cheese with scrambled eggs is both filling and will provide energy for your day: it’s also quick and easy to make.
Crunched for time? Try some of these recipes, many of which can be prepared up to a week in advance.
It’s not a waste of time, and it shouldn’t take very long. Countless studies point to the physical and mental health benefits of a regular gratitude practice. It also boosts your self-esteem and improves your relationships with others, qualities any young entrepreneur depends on to achieve success. Grumpy entrepreneurs don’t make friends and inspire teams!
Your daily gratitude practice does not need to be elaborate or time-consuming. A simple smile to someone you love can do wonders for your mood. As you head to school, make a mental note to appreciate something beautiful outside. Give someone a compliment, and really mean it. All these things are simple, easy, and take no more than a second or two of your time.
See? There’s actually not much to it! By developing a solid, healthy, and beneficial morning routine, you are far more likely to find mental and physical benefits throughout your day, which in turn will lead you down the path of success.
The Kantner Foundation offers college scholarships to young Florida entrepreneurs. Ready to learn more? Click here to see if you are eligible!