Cop this 30 minute Morning Habit Stack to Win Your Day (…or maybe not?)
If you sleep and wake on a daily basis, this post is for you! Today I am going to take you through my morning habit stack that helps me win my day. And yes I said “habit stack” not routine. If you don’t know the difference between the two, I recommend you check-out these posts here:
The reason I am sharing this habit stack is because it is probably one of the most popular questions I get! But please keep in mind, this stack is not for every body. I want what is best for you, so make sure you do lot of experimenting to find a habit stack that sets you up for success.
I also want to stress the importance of sleeping and waking habits as one of the main types of habits you should create in your life. We sleep and wake whether we like it or not, so creating healthy habits within that realm of behaviour can really optimize your mood and productivity.
Step 1: Achieve a Full night’s Sleep
My morning habit stack technically starts the night before when I set my alarm. I do not wake up at the same time everyday – but rather, I set my alarm after making sure I get 8 hours of sleep. So If I go to sleep at 11 pm then my alarm gets set for 7 AM. And if I go to sleep at 1 AM then I set my alarm for 9 AM.
I also set 3 alarms in a row. The reason I do this is because it is so habitual for me to press snooze. So I figured, instead of relying solely on willpower to wake up without pressing snooze, I should use that habit to my advantage. Now, I set the first alarm 5 minutes before I actually want to get up (when the alarm goes off it is only a vibrate, not a loud annoying sound). Then I press snooze to “satisfy” my habit so to speak. One minute later, a second vibrate-only alarm goes off. I press snooze. By this point, I am pretty much awake and more importantly I am not annoyed or have a headache due to a loud, annoying alarm sound in the morning. Finally, one minute later the final alarm goes off and this time it is an actual sound that gradually gets loud. I actually like to change the sound up every once in a while so I don’t create a habit out of only getting out of bed to one particular sound.
Step 2: Learn
Once I am awake, I don’t get out of bed immediately. Getting out of bed is one of the most difficult things for me so it takes me a while to slowly move the covers off my body and sit-up. Once I am up, I get my mind working by doing my daily Croatian lesson. I am currently using a language learning app called Mondly.
Once my Croatian is done, I immediately make my bed, then walk to the bathroom to brush my teeth and pump out some body weight squats. I also recently added calf raises to this habit. Just to be clear, when I brush my teeth top to bottom left to right, I am cued to start my squats.
Step 3: Exercise
Then before walking out of my bedroom I do my “daily movement” which consists of push ups, 3 ab exercises, ad bridges/hip raises. Then, if the blinds in my living room are closed I will go open them all and take no more than a 1 to 2 seconds to look outside, absorb the beautiful light, and begin thinking positively about the day I am about to start.
Step 4: Hydrate
At this point, I make a warm drink – either a tea or a coffee. I like drinking something warm because I am forced to slow-down and be mindful.
From the beginning of step 1 to the end of step 4 takes me about 30 minutes.
Step 5: Sunlight and More Exercise …
If I am working from home that day and do not have anything schedule before 11:30 AM, I will change into workout clothes and go out for a run. If there is snow on the ground (which happens a lot living in Canada…) I will lift some weights and then read while peddling on the stationary bike.
After my run I might do a bit of foam rolling action and possibly some yoga. The yoga isn’t a go-to habit I do daily, but when I know I have the time, I use willpower to prioritize it.
Step 6: Organize and Clear the Mind
At this point, I shower, wash any dishes from the night before, and do some cleaning (ex. sweeping, vaccuuming, washing the floors, wiping-down bathroom surfaces, etc.). Starting my day in this way helps me stay organized, clear my mind, and relieves me from thinking about simple tasks – all I have to think about are the big goals I am working on that day.
In order to keep my sleeping and waking times relatively consistent, I try not to eat later than 1 to 2 hours before I go to sleep and I do not drink coffee after 2 PM.
To be clear, I do not do this habit stack every single day no matter what. I do this stack within the same context. It is also important to note I have been doing this stack for so long now that I I have built up my willpower enough so that I can engage in these tasks even if my context is different. I keep myself accountable by tracking these habits daily in my bullet journal (see photo below).
What does your Morning Routine/Habit Stack look like? If you guys try this or any element of this morning habit stack, let me know in the comments below. If you do anything else during your morning that I do not, be sure to let me know as well!
As always I hope you have a great day and don’t forget to make this the #YearofYou