I noticed a trend on Youtube recently that I wanted to hop in on, which is all about sharing how you start your day. In reflecting on my morning practices and rituals, I realize that I’ve become quite intentional about how I start the day, but that my rituals are only really solid when I’m working from home.
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I spend about a quarter of my time traveling for Bossed Up Bootcamps (like the one I’m hosting in NYC next weekend!) or public speaking engagements across the country, during which my morning routine gets thrown way off. But like everything in life, it’s not about perfection. It’s about being intentional about protecting the practices that fuel me, so I can show up and deliver with the energy and enthusiasm I love bringing to this community!
I Start Slow
The first thing you should know about me, is that I’m not a morning person. #BradTheBoo always beats me out of bed, which is why when I’m home, I never use an alarm clock. Charging my phone in the kitchen was the best thing I ever did for my sleep since I’m a bit of an Instagram addict and simply cannot keep my phone in my room without being on it far too late into the evening.
I like to aim to get up just after 7:00 am, after a good amount of morning snuggles with #TeddyTheDog and pulling our blackout curtains back to let the natural light shine in on us. It helps when Brad delivers coffee to me in bed, which makes me feel like like the luckiest woman alive.
But on the rare occasion when my body feels completely wiped and needs more rest, I feel no guilt about sleeping in another hour. If my body is begging for some more snooze time, I generally give it. I tend to go to bed around 10:30 or 11:00 pm each night, so if I’m not feeling well-rested when I wake up at 7:00 am, it means something else is off.
In addition to my morning coffee, I have become dependent on my habit of downing a big glass of water first thing to start my day. Staying hydrated here in the Mile High City can feel like a full-time job, but it’s so important. It leaves me feeling more alert and awake the rest of the morning.
I Get the News
While I make breakfast, I’m always playing my local NPR Station (shout-out to Colorado Public Radio!) on my Amazon Echo dot, and can often be found perusing the Sunday New York Times. I get the paper it delivered to my house once a week, but it lives on my kitchen table as I slowly digest the news all week long. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll probably see me talking about news I’ve read in the Sunday paper in my Instagram stories all week long, because that’s when I’m finally getting around to reading them.
While I absorb some national and local news, I scan my inbox and social media accounts to see if there’s anything extra exciting or in urgent need of my attention. Usually there isn’t, so I leave my inbox alone until later in the morning when I’m ready to detox my inbox.
Sometimes, if I’m itching to get outside first thing in the morning, I’ll listen to The Daily podcast from the New York Times or Erica Mandy’s the Newsworthy podcast to get my round-up of current events instead of reading.
I Move My Body
I’ve made it my mission get outside early in the morning each day with #TeddytheDog for a walk in our nearby neighborhood park. Over the past few months as my stress over the launch of the Bossed Up Book and planning my upcoming book tour really ramped up, I realized that when I didn’t get these morning walks in, I was a ball of stress for the rest of the day.
I try to always make sure I break a sweat at least once a day, preferably in the morning. So whether I power-walk uphill in the park with Teddy, or feel up for running laps in the park or working out in the outdoor gym that the city of Denver provides there, I always make sure Teddy and I get our heart rates up and take at least 30 minutes to start my day this way.
About once a week, I replace my morning walk with a local yoga class and scoot my way there on my moped with my yoga mat strapped to my back. I’ve also recently added boxing classes at Blunt Force Training to my routine too, which has officially become my favorite way to blow off steam, and leave my arms feeling chiseled and strong. Plus, I feel like throwing a punch is just a good life skill to have. I’ve been a ClassPass user for years and love it because it enables me to mix up my workout routine and try out lots of different studios around town.
I Fuel My Body
By the time my morning workout is behind me, I’m pretty hungry again, and want to make sure I eat something healthy and hearty to help build muscle throughout the rest of the day.
Smoothies have become my favorite, easy, and delicious way to get a whole bunch of nutrients at once, typically including Tone It Up Nutrition’s Protein Power (my favorite flavor is coconut – and you can now find their products at Target and CVS!). I throw in some mix of fruit and (sometimes) veggies, top it off with chia seeds and almond milk, and blend the whole thing up with my immersion blender.
When I have fresh pineapple in the house, I throw in a handful of frozen baby spinach for a tropical, vitamin-rich mix that totally doesn’t taste like spinach. Otherwise, I often throw in a half a banana and a handful of berries or some chunks of mango or whatever fresh fruit I have in the house.
On the rare occasion that I run out of fruit altogether, in the house, I throw in my leftover coffee from earlier in the morning and make an almond milk-heavy, mocha-flavored smoothie, sometimes adding in cinnamon to the mix, too. Whatever the flavor, I love a good smoothie. They’re fast, delicious, and nutritious.
After a quick shower and washing my face with my favorite oil cleanser from Crude – which you can save 20% off on with code BossedUp at checkout – I slather on an undereye serum, sunscreen, and moisturizer, and post up at my home office’s desk for the rest of the morning.
I always sit down with my Bossed Up LifeTrackerPlanner (which is currently 25% off in the Bossed Up shop!) and take a look at my top priorities for the month, week, and day, before making a daily TO DO list and diving right in.
Writing is by far the most challenging – and the most valuable – work that I do on behalf of Bossed Up, whether that means writing out our social media posts for the day, upcoming blog posts, or proposals for training and speaking engagements. I write best when my brain is feeling fresh, so I block off my mornings to focus on creative pursuits exclusively.
I use Calendly to schedule all my meetings and phone calls for the afternoon and work hard to preserve this boundary so my content creation comes first. I often can be found recording podcasts, starting conversations on Instagram stories, or engaging with our bosses in the Bossed Up Courage Community on Facebook in these morning hours, depending on what the production priorities of the day are.
I typically take a mid-morning stretch break around 10:30 am or 11:00 am to get up, give my eyes a screen break, and have a small snack to keep me focused and engaged and ready to rock the rest of the day.
How Do You Kick-Start Your Day?
I realize my morning routine is pretty uniquely dependent on the flexibility that comes with working from home and setting my own schedule. But I’m always looking for life hacks and new habits to integrate that help set the tone for a productive, stress-free day ahead.
What rituals how you found work best for you? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!
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