The way you wake up and start your morning impacts the rest of your day. Establishing a morning routine checklist will eliminate decision making, save time, make you more productive and put you in the right set of mind. Sounds awesome, but why doesn’t everybody do morning routines?
Morning routines can be compared to brushing your teeth or going to the gym. Everybody knows that they have to brush their teeth each morning and evening. Does everybody do it? Even gym junkies do not enjoy going to the gym every day. It takes a strong will of mind.
Think of morning routines as brushing your teeth – don’t skip them!
Nevertheless keep in mind that your morning routine checklist can consist from one to hundred things. It’s important to have a morning routine checklist relevant to your goals in life.
Morning Routine Checklist of Successful People
Does having a morning routine checklist make you successful? Definitely not! Many people ask: “How to have a good day?”. It’s the mental state and attitude for the rest of the day that boosts your productivity and well being. It’s no secret that most successful people have morning routines. Unfortunately, there is no one solution that works for everybody. Each one of us is different and even the most successful people in the world start their days differently.
Over the past 10 years I have read, studied, tested and applied in my morning routine checklist of the most successful entrepreneur, politician and artist morning rituals. They are vastly different from each other and some are even kind of weird!
One thing successful people have in common – sticking to their routines!
Morning Routine Checklist
I have gathered this list of things to do in the morning from various sources. Feel free to scratch out or adjust the ones that do not make sense to you. Don’t be afraid to add some of your own!
I suggest starting to add morning routines one by one. In this way you will not get overwhelmed with having too much time taken out of your day. The goal here is to implement them into your everyday life and the first step can be as simple as “On Sundays at 07:00am after brushing my teeth I’m going to … for 1 minute.” Be specific, that increases your chances of sticking with a routine!
Having a Morning Routine is a Lifestyle Choice
1. Prepare for the morning routine
That’s right! Your morning routine checklist starts the previous night.
Pack up your gym bag, put the clothes you are going to wear next to your bed and make sure breakfast is easily accessible. It will be much easier to wake up when everything is laid out for you. Make waking up feel comfortable and easy.
2. No screens before sleep
Having a qualitative sleep is one of the most important things to feel like a superstar the following day.
Your brain is stimulated by videos, pictures, messages etc. and if you do not prepare for going to sleep your mind might be wide awake while your eyes are closed.
Prepare for sleep by taking 60 minutes off all the blue light screens and let your brain relax. Put down your phone, turn off your tv and computer screen. Brush your teeth, prepare your breakfast and clothes for the following day, read a book. Calm your mind down and it will significantly increase your sleep quality.
Tactical tip: set an alarm 60 minutes before your bedtime as a reminder.
3. Go to sleep at a certain time
I can’t stress enough how important it is to go to sleep at a certain time each night. After a few weeks of going to sleep at a certain time you will notice that falling asleep takes only a few minutes. For some of you falling asleep might not be a problem, but by implementing this in your routine will allow you to wake up more easily. Your body clock will adjust itself to your routine and you might eventually start waking up right before the alarm rings.
For those who are wondering – Yes, this applies also to the weekends. 🙂
Tactical tip: Meditate 5 minutes before going to sleep to calm down your mind.
4. First thing in the morning – Wake up early
Probably the hardest part for most of the readers. If you follow the previous two steps, waking up early can become easier after a few days already! Early birds get things done before anybody else. It will give you an edge over anybody else for the rest of the day because you will have already accomplished several things while others are still asleep.
The time to wake up varies from person to person. Personally, I go to sleep at 11pm and wake up at 6am. My morning routine takes 2 hours. Think about how many hours it is necessary for you to sleep and how much time your morning routines take.
5. You snooze you loose
Everybody sets up their alarm clock, but not everybody wakes up. Most people feel like the amount of the sleep they get is never enough so they hit the snooze button.
First of all, by snoozing your body’s internal clock will get confused because one day you might get up at 06:00 and the next at 06:30. Second of all, by getting up at a certain time you will have done the hardest part of your day which will kickstart the rest of your day.
Tactical tip: put your phone 5 metres away from your bed. That will force you to get out of the bed and stop the most awful sound in the world!
6. Analyze your dreams
You will only remember your dreams for a few minutes, if not seconds. Dreams often represent how we feel. By analysing them you can perhaps solve a problem that has been stuck in your head for a while. I was fascinated by discussing them with my psychotherapist and found out interesting things about myself that I did not know before. There are more benefits of analysing your dreams, but I won’t get into that, unless you would like to? Let me know.
Tactical tip: Keep a dream journal next to your bed. Write down what you have dreamt about right after waking up to remember what the dream was about.
7. Make your bed
As silly as this might sound it is one of the best things you can do in the morning. It’s simple to do and only takes 2 minutes. What’s so magic about making your bed? It’s the first accomplishment of the day, you have already done something that you can feel good about. At this point your brain is thinking: “Oh, alright! I did already make the bed, why not continue my day by accomplishing other things”. It gives you a sense of pride and encourages you to do the next task.
In a clean house lives a clean spirit and in a dirty place lives… You know what I mean. Not always true, but it definitely affects your mind.
At the end of the day your bed will look sexy and inviting as well!
8. Put on a podcast
I don’t know the statistics, but I’m quite certain that the first thing most people do in the morning is checking their phones. The main reason why you should NOT check your phone when you get up is because it can make you more stressed and less positive.
“Seems like everybody is always on a vacation. It makes me want to be on a vacation and drink pina colada not get up for work and be productive.” – Me thinking to myself.
By listening to podcasts you will learn a lot of new and interesting news. No longer are you forced to choose between 10 radio stations full of commercials and negative information that you don’t really care about and makes you paranoid about life.
My personal favorite podcasts (over the last 10 years):
- The School of Greatness – Lewis Howes is on a mission to inspire others to reach their full potential. He’s definitely inspiring me! He holds a similar concept to Tim Ferriss’ show. I like TIm a bit better only because he really gets to the bottom of the topic and talks about controversial things as well.
- Joe Rogan Podcast is definitely the most fun one. Joe talks about various interesting subjects and always has fun with it. Expect more laughs from this one for mornings that you do not want to be too serious.
- Aubrey Marcus Podcast – This guy is an experienced psychonaut. He creates space for vulnerable and honest conversations about the deeper questions in life. He talks about human psychology, psychedelics, holistic health, spirituality, relationships and entrepreneurship.
- The Tim Ferriss Show – I love this guy! He always has interesting and successful people on his show. He’s always done his research about the guest and asks extremely interesting questions!Tactical tip: You can listen to a podcast while doing most of the morning routine tasks simultaneously.
9. Drink a glass of lemon water on an empty stomach
It’s a source of vitamin C which is an antioxidant that protects cells as well as helps maintain the pH balance of the body.
Do you have some extra weight you would like to lose? It’s unknown whether it’s the lemon juice or simply the fact that people drink more water with it, but there is evidence that supports weight loss! Lemon juice also helps digestion and improves skin quality. Check out this blog to find out more about it!
Tactical tip: If you think it’s too sour add some honey or maple syrup in it.
10. Splash your face with water!
Yup, just go to the sink and splash your face with water. Give that little “shock” to the brain so it understands that you ain’t going back to sleep!
According to these studies, cold exposure prompts blood flow to the exposed area, thus providing better protection from free radicals, such as pollution, and resulting in a healthier complexion
11. Do a quick clean
This might not be great for everybody, but I actually enjoy cleaning dishes and house in the mornings. It allows me to wake up slowly, get my head in order as well as it cleans the apartment and just like with making the bed – gives me a sense of accomplishment.
12. Morning stretches? More like winning stretches!
Remember that lemon water glass you drank? You should feel more awake by now and do some morning stretches. There are a million stretches that you can do. I like to keep it simple and short, others like to do an hour session of yoga in the morning. Do what feels right to you, but do at least 2 minutes to start your blood and metabolism going.
Tactical tip: If you are not used to stretching try new stretches each day and save the ones that you like to make it a more enjoyable process.
13. Do a morning workout
There are endless variations on what you can do in the morning. Go for a run, swim, bicycling, walking, gym, tennis… Find what suits you the best. I like to do 10 – 40 minutes workouts from home or going to a group workout in the gym. Even doing a 7 minute workout will do miracles if you do it every day! Find what suits you the best. It will start your metabolism which will make you more likely want to eat breakfast as well as you may actually want to eat healthy afterwards not to ruin your workout.
There are studies saying that exercise not only increases your physical health, but promotes brain development, increases concentration and boosts your mood.
-Lowers the risk of chronic conditions, heart diseases, cancer, type 2 diabetes and more..
-Improves self-esteem, mood, sleep quality, and energy levels
Tactical tip: By working out in the morning you will increase your energy levels throughout the day, be more focused and in a better mood.
14. Take a cold shower
There are quite many benefits of taking a cold shower. It will shock your nerve system and wake you up better than any coffee in the world. Taking a cold shower is not an easy task to do if you are new at this.
Imagine turning on that cold stream of water on purpose – it takes a lot of willpower! By doing it every day it will discipline you and this discipline will spread to other parts of your life. Check out these 16 benefits of taking a cold shower.
There are also benefits of taking a warm shower. Suit yourself which one is better for you.
Tactical tip: Mentally prepare yourself before turning on the cold shower. Do a breathwork before taking a cold shower (or ice bath) to make it easier!
15. Drink a cup of tea
I already hear all of the coffee lovers screaming and shouting. Listen, if coffee is what you love then leave it in your routine. Both have their health benefits. Reason why I’m choosing tea is because it delivers a more relaxed energy boost that has less side effects. I suggest “Yerba Mate” tea as it is one of the healthiest and most energizing teas out there.
There is the so-called “Fight or flight” effect from drinking coffee which puts me more at unease and makes me anxious. But judge yourself which one in the fight of tea vs. coffee wins.
Tactical tip: Add MCT (Coconut) oil in your tea or coffee to maximise the energy boost and lose more weight!
16. Tasty breakfast
Lemon juice + Stretching + Exercising = Metabolism up and running!
Think of your body as a car. If you put Coca-Cola instead of Petrol in your car – will it run? The same with your body. Depending on your goals choose between healthy choices to fuel your body and start your day. If you followed the previous points your metabolism is already going full speed which means more energy more quickly!
Healthy breakfast ingredients ideas:
- Chia seeds
- Greek yoghurt
- Various berries
- Whole bread
Healthy breakfast food ideas:
- Oatmeal with berries & fruits, cinamon
- Smoothie (my favourite) with Kale, Spinach, Banana, Hemp protein, Berries, Peanut butter, Spirulina, Maca powder, Oats. As long as you add Banana and Peanut butter it will taste great.
- Eggs with avocado and whole wheat toast
- ½ cup chia seeds + 1 cup of rice milk. Store in the fridge overnight and in the morning you will have a taste pudding. Add some fruits or berries on top.
Tactical tip: Eat only 1 type of meal each morning. It will save you frustration and time spent on thinking and looking for what to eat. For the last 5 years I have been drinking the smoothie mentioned above. On a rare occasion I switch to oatmeal.
17. Probiotics and Other supplements!
Nowadays there is a huge hype about probiotics and natural supplements that boost your mood and energy levels. There are hundreds of them, but not all of them work (at least for me).
My hypothesis is that each person is different and what might work for one, might not for another. There are some products, which are widely popular and work for the majority of people. Below is a list of few that I have felt actual results with:
- Lion’s mane – improves brain health and helps fight depression and anxiety (I’m an anxious person).
- Cordyceps – boosted energy
- Vitamin D – if you don’t go out enough or live in a country where it’s dark and cloudy you should consider taking Vitamin D
- Omega-3 – improved cardiovascular health, lowers depression, dementia and arthritis. Suggest Vegan one to avoid mercury poisoning.
- Spirulina – anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antimicrobial, and cholesterol-lowering properties
- Maca Root – Helps boost energy and to manage stress
18. Brush and floss your teeth
Get a fresh start with a fresh breath! Kill bacteria and maintain healthy teeth and overall health not only from eating, but brushing your teeth 2x a day and flossing them at least once a day (which I’m struggling with myself…)
19. Meditate – workout your mind, just like you do the body!
Meditation has been practiced since 1500 BCE! Lately it has been trending more than ever and more people have started practicing it. It’s a “mind workout” that most successful people of the world use to be more present in the moment and deal with stress.
There are numerous stereotypes about what meditation is and the truth is that it is VERY diverse. The same as there are different sports, there are different meditation and breathwork techniques.
It has been proven scientifically that meditation does give benefits in short and long-term!
Meditation helps with:
-being more aware and present in the moment throughout the day;
-controlling your thoughts;
20. Daily affirmations
Daily affirmations are fascinating, I do them every single day.
A person remembers an idea more if they feel a stronger emotion; the stronger the emotion, the more the person remembers the thought. This process programs us into subconscious beliefs. If we maintain a certain state for a long time, we will think and feel in the same way without thinking.
For example, if you have been a bad friend and want to change that, then your daily affirmation could sound something like this “I’m a fantastic friend, I am giving, caring and loving towards them”. The trick here is to really believe in what you are saying. Visualise yourself being that loving and giving person when you say this affirmation. Only saying something without believing it will not work.
Your mind will start “reprogramming” itself and your behavior will slowly start to shift.
Scientific research MODULATION OF DNA CONFORMATION BY HEART-FOCUSED INTENTION. Here is an article and book if you would like to learn more about daily affirmations.
Tactical tip: Repeat affirmations daily and don’t just say them, but really believe in them.
You are the ruler of your own reality. The same as with affirmations you are able to manifest anything in your life as long as you believe in it. I have manifested myself in relationships, money, lifestyle, adventures… now when I’m thinking about it – I have manifested absolutely everything that I have had in my life and I continue to do so.
Make sure to “listen” to the universe and your body for signs and trust your intuition to take actions. Make sure that you do take actions because it is very unlikely that the universe will reward you without putting in the work.
This is an interesting research that suggests if one believes he can achieve his goals, he will be willing to work hard to achieve them. This is contradictory to the law-of-attraction manifestation style that suggests that belief alone is enough to manifest something. In conclusion, the research is suggesting that our beliefs change our behaviours that lead to the desired outcomes.
Importantly, this research suggests that if we truly believe we can achieve something, we are willing to do the hard work to achieve it. This is in contrast to law-of-attraction style manifestation which suggests that belief alone is enough to bring about manifestation. Ultimately, science suggests that our beliefs bring about behaviours (and responses from others) that lead to the outcomes we desire.
Tactical tip: Get inspired by Rob Dyrek telling his unbelievable story about manifestation
22. Be grateful
How often do you stop and think about how lucky you are to have simple things in life, such as a roof over your head or even food? The fact that you are reading this article means that the basic needs in your life have been taken care of, but we tend to take them for granted.
Think to yourself what are the things that you are grateful for each day. It can literally be anything. That will help you be more positive and happy about the things that you have in your life right now instead of wishing and thinking how to have more. Having more will not make you happy, but being grateful for the things and people you have in your life right now will!
Tactical tip: Add it in your morning routine to write down 5 things that you are grateful for each day. FYI here again you have to feel and embody the gratefulness, just saying it doesn’t work.
23. Write down your daily goals!
Writing down 3 specific work goals and 3 private life goals each day will make you more likely to achieve them. It’s because by writing these goals down it helps your brain zoom out from all the things you have to do and focus just on these 3.
It can help turn your visions into reality. Sometimes ideas are stuck in our heads for a long time and writing them down is a great first step of achieving them and they will serve you as a reminder!
When you complete a goal, cross it off the list. It will make you feel great and give you a sense of accomplishment. We all love finishing tasks!
Tactical tip: Don’t write down too broad goals, try to make them more specific and achievable. Do the most important task of the day first!
24. Have your day planned
When are you going to start your work day? When is it going to end so you can enjoy the rest of your day? This is a common problem nowadays – people don’t stop working even after the working hours are done. Think about how your day will unfold, create a plan and stick with it. If you are overworking plan inside your free time, if you have too much free time work on yourself – read a book, do an online course, or whatever else. Plan it out and stick with it.
25. Join our Daily 15-min Morning Mindfulness sessions.
Start your day with guidance, inspiration, and a supportive community that understands and empathizes with your personal growth journey. Our Check-Ins provide a space for reflection, intention-setting, and connecting with like-minded individuals who are committed to embracing their full potential. Every Monday – Friday at 10am GMT+3.
I hope you don’t feel overwhelmed with all the morning routine ideas here. If you are just starting out, it’s important that you start slowly – adding just one or two new things to your daily routine, give it 2-3 weeks before adding new routines on top of it. By trying to do too many things at once you might feel overwhelmed and stop doing them all together.
What makes a routine effective? Doing it every day and finishing the tasks in the morning before losing motivation will let you enjoy benefits all day. Also doing them in a logical sequence, for example, if your gym is on the way to the work then your routine could look like: … step in the car -> drive to gym -> go to work…
We are here to help you get your morning routine ready, check out what is offered in our personal growth Membership.