5 Easy Peasy Ways To Improve Your Morning Routine

5 Easy Peasy Ways To Improve Your Morning Routine
This post is Sponsored By L’Or Espresso

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My morning routine changes periodically. Sometimes I eat breakfast and then have a shower and sometimes I shower first. I’m just a loose canon like that. The one thing that never changes is that my routine always includes coffee. In fact it generally starts with coffee. We had to buy a Nepresso recently because my body doesn’t communicate with my limbs for at least an hour after I’ve woken up. This makes it difficult to make coffee with complicated apparatus like plungers and syphons because everything just ends up on the floor. With my little morning joy maker I literally press a button and delicious caffeine comes pouring out. So good.

I’ve been trying out all the different capsules from L’or Espresso and I was having a chat to their marketing rep about my morning routine and then everyone started talking about their own morning routines. Dragging their husbands out of bed, banging around blindly in the dark looking for socks and generally just being completely sleepy and useless. I thought it was high time I hatched together a little article on how to improve your morning routine because some people seem to enjoy the wee small hours a bit more than others. There are those bright and eyed bushy tailed little possums who jump out of bed like there’s a pot of gold waiting for them in the kitchen and those of us who need to take mornings very slowly and with much caution. Here are a few tips to help make your morning a little easier and give you the best start to the day. (Keep reading for your chance to win a snazzy $100 voucher…)

5 Easy Peasy Ways To Improve Your Morning Routine

Prepare The Night Before

Make sure the kitchen is neat and tidy to make breakfast preparation easier. If you pack your lunch for school or work prepare as much as you can the night before – chop up your carrot sticks, premix any dressings and put things like nuts and crackers in containers. It’s really easy to waste time in the morning scrambling for sandwich wraps and drink bottles so make sure you’re as organised as you can be before you go to bed. Have your wallet, train ticket, keys, sunglasses and other essentials ready to grab as you walk out the door in morning. A little preparation makes such a difference to your stress levels in the morning. 

Develop a Set of Morning Rituals

Make your bed. Eat breakfast with your housemate or partner. Watch 10 minutes of your favourite morning show. Make a beautiful cup of delicious coffee and enjoy it slowly. Having little regular landmarks through out the morning helps to create habits and gives a lovely feeling of comfort and consistency. 

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Have an Estimated Time of Departure

If you have no idea what time you’re going to leave, how do you know how much time you have? No matter where you’re going in the morning, it’s important to know what time you’re going to leave your house. This ensures that you can budget your minutes effectively and get out the door in time to get to where you’re going. It sounds like a really obvious suggestion but sometimes we all need reminding of the simple things.

Only Do Essential Tasks In The Morning

Food – essential. Clothing – essential. Scanning Facebook for early morning rant posts from people who you hate follow – not essential. Not many people have time for unnecessary tasks in the morning so save unpacking the clean dishwasher, scrubbing the toilet, sorting through your mail or trolling on the internet for later in the day when you aren’t running late for the bus. 

Take 5 Minutes For Yourself

Even if it’s just a few minutes to stand still in the shower and perhaps do a three minute treatment on your hair or to sit outside and enjoy your breakfast in peace. We can really only start the day well if we allow ourselves. Rushing around like a maniac and getting grumpy when things go wrong is a sure fire way to start the day on a bad note!

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So… we thought it would be a cool idea to get all of you Smaggle readers to share your morning routines.

I’ve got a $100 Westfield voucher for the person who gives me the biggest giggle in the comments with tales of their morning trauma or triumphs because mornings are a struggle for a lot of people.

Tell me… what’s your morning routine?

The post was co-ordinated by The Remarkables Group.
Carly is the founding editor of Smaggle which launched in 2007 back when blogging was weird. She has appeared in The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, Cosmopolitan and Cleo magazines. Hoop earrings are totally her thing and she almost got run over by Myf Warhurst while out jogging one day.

34 Comments

  1. Rachel Pierce 11 months ago

    I usually spend about a half hour after my alarm in bed willing myself to wake up.
    Ideally: When I finally manage to drag myself up I take a shower and start a show as soon as I get out. My apartment is tiny, so I can watch a recorded show while I get dressed, make and eat breakfast, and pack up my stuff for work.
    Usually: I have to skip the TV and make breakfast in a rush.
    Sometimes: I skip the shower and breakfast if I slept too late. I have an alarm on my phone of the latest I can get up so I wont be late. If it goes off and I’m still in bed then I wind up scrounging for food at work with varying success.

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      I do the half hour wake up in bed routine as well. I just can’t get straight out of bed. Not happening.

  2. cilosophy.blogspot.com 11 months ago

    It always involves coffee.
    I love all of these tips…I need to spend less time on social media!

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      I’m TERRIBLE first thing in the morning. Like who cares who liked my Facebook page over night? I need to get over it.

  3. Steph 11 months ago

    At my best I am fairly uncoordinated and first thing in the morning I’m hopeless. I routinely pour boiling water from the kettle into my muesli or pour muesli into my coffee cup. I’m never organised with lunch the night before so I try to make it at the same time as I make my breakfast. I have come home at the end of the day to find a bowl of lentils sitting neatly inside the cutlery drawer. I am now however on maternity leave and this has improved my mornings no end. Unless I absolutely must be somewhere early I now generally avoid the kitchen until I’m more alert and less likely to create havoc. It’s tops, but perhaps not a feasible long term solution

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      Oh man that must be amazing because although you can’t exactly sleep in getting dressed and being functional are fairly optional… right?

  4. Alisa Muir 11 months ago

    My mornings vary from super calm and blow me away awesome. Through to screaming banshee of a nightmare mother.. Through to zombie esque.

    Usually my alarm goes off. I usually sleep through it, somehow incorporating it into my dream somehow. It is amazing how many ways an alarm noise can be used in a dream.
    Often I go through this with a 6 year old taking up 3/4 of my bed. Because his little body needs more of the bed than I do.

    I usually then drag myself out of bed. I then groggily wake up the other two kids. Flick the jug on. Start to prepare coffee, breakfast and lunches.
    Usually this also included “I have no socks, MUUUUUUM I have no socks, MUUUUMMM do you know where my school top is.. MUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUM HE SAID. SHE SAID. HE LOOKED AT ME” type conversations.

    I somehow get myself clothed. Sometimes I actually drink the coffee I make. I usually manage to get all of us out the door on time. Then walk the kids to school…. Then often help at school with different jobs. Then stumble home to actually drink coffee and then start on the day time chores.

    Sometimes this all happens with a smile on my dial.
    Sometimes with a scowl.
    Either way. It happens.

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      I love that. Either way, it happens. So true. If you’ve got a shit attitude or good one it’s going to happen anyway so you might as well make the most out of it.

  5. My morning’s are very much the get-up-and-go type, luckily I’m a morning person so it’s usually not too much trouble!
    I’m definitely a big believer in preparing the night before, I lay out clothes and pack up my bag so I don’t even have to think about it. I also make up a big salad on a Sunday that lasts a few work lunches, so that’s sorted too! All that’s left in the morning is to get up, shower, dress/hair/makeup, eat some breakfast and get out of there – generally all done in about half an hour!
    Now, if only I could be so organised in other parts of my life!

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      I love laying out clothes the night before! I’ve been doing for years. Most people think I’m mental but its such a time saver!

      • I know! It makes such a big difference! I’ve been doing it for as long as I can remember, although my mum likes to remind me that when I was a toddler & she would lay my clothes out I would tell her “you can put them there if you like, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to wear them” – what a little brat!

  6. JNum 11 months ago

    Well, I’m single, I work nights and am a freelancer from home, so ‘morning’ and ‘routine’ are fluid concepts for me. Oh, my alarm goes off at 9am …”yeah, I’m gonna get up at nine every morning no matter what time I crashed the night before and I’ll do yoga and then run and then read five novels and then write two and then have f*&ling asparagus and organic sourdough bananas for breakfast!” I stare at the alarm, then at my dumb fat dog, hoping my dumb fat dog hasn’t been roused, then at my alarm. I mentally chastise myself for what I’m about to do. I turn it off, and start daydreaming about being in an episode of Deadwood before falling asleep again.

    My REAL alarm comings at about 11.30am when my dumb fat dog becomes tired of staring unblinking at my face and initiates a tactical maneuver best described as the Bed Bomb and Spin. In which he…well, bombs the bed then spins for a while.

    I roll out from under my dumb fat dog, stumble toward the bathroom, cry to the heavens for direction, purpose, mercy! I remember the two bottles of wine I drank the night before, shifty-eyed and bitter, I put a berocca in a glass of water, to be ready after I pee. I pee. I down the lifeless red liquid that sureless they have the technology to make it taste better, and get in the damn shower before I have an existential breakdown.

    After the shower I feel fine, walk my dog and enjoy the rest of the day. Maybe skip a little as I do.

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      I think you’ll find that by the time it’s midday it’s not longer the morning… :-)

  7. Tahlia Meredith 11 months ago

    Oh dear, my comment got eaten :s I’ll try again.

    I like to give myself plenty of time in the mornings because I HATE feeling rushed. I’m also all about the routine, always have been. When I was in high school, I’d get up at 7 and go straight to the shower. Then get dressed, hair etc and make my bed, have breakfast, pack my bags and go. Sometimes I’d get up and my mum had beaten me to the bathroom, so I had to have breakfast first. Which of course made me really huffy because I had to change the routine.

    It wasn’t until years after I’d left home that my mum confessed she knew all about my OCD morning routine and found it a bit funny to stuff me up from time to time. Cheeky bugger :)

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      Ha ha ha! My routine is fairly similar – I generally do things in all the same order unless I’m too sleepy and then all hell breaks loose.

  8. Lejla 11 months ago

    i am caffeine addict and the whole day depends on my morning rituals. Turn the coffee machine on, Sunrise on TV and just empty stares, waiting for the caffeine to kick in. After that all day is good. So, picture this – one morning alarm clock ringing like crazy and then I realised that I am late for work (am shift, I am a nurse). OMG, running around the house, brushing teeth, dressing, out of door without coffee (ouch!) . Don’t even know how I drove to work ( over the West gate BTW), arrived 45 min late, beetroot face, pounding headache and decreased alertness only to find out that I was rostered on PM shift that day. Triple espresso for me please….

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      ARGH! RAGE! And that’s SUCH a job that you can’t be late for. Bollocks.

  9. Neat 11 months ago

    my fav tip when I have to get up super early is turn the light on straight away, it works for me everytime and wakes me up that much faster ……..and my hot tip on ways to avoid morning trauma is don’t try carrying too much outside to eat breakfast…… this morning I did and somehow managed to spill a hot cup of water all over my wrist awwhhhhhhhh!!!! Thats definitely how to not wake up.

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      Oh no! That’s the WORST!!! My apartment is quite light filled so I sleep with a sleeping mask on but taking it off always helps!

  10. Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella 11 months ago

    I work from home so it’s a bit less stressful than it used to be but I always make hubby’s lunch the day before to save on time in the morning! :)

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      Do you make his lunch everyday? How luck is he? I’ve been doing that Mr Smags recently but only because I’m following an eating plan and every meal is designed for two… so he’s just lucky!

  11. Emilie 11 months ago

    My tale is disgusting, but I’m going to share it with you regardless. I am a zookeeper in training, meaning I’m completing my last semester of school to start this type of work full time. I was interning as a keeper last summer. This meant I spent late nights up with the beau, doing homework, watching shows…things like that. It also meant I needed to be prompt, alert and ready at seven a.m. every morning. Argh! One night, we had quite a bit to drink in a birthday celebration. I forget that I’m getting older, thus I handle alcohol less and less as well as I did when i was seventeen! I woke up DREADFULLY hungover, put on my smelly uniform and shoes and headed to the monkey exhibits. To any typical person, cleaning up monkey feces daily is disgusting…well, imagine it hungover and dizzy. I ended up vomiting twice while cleaning the backholding. Which, of course, meant I had to clean up my own gross-ness as well. Never again will I be taking that road. Hahahah.

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      Holy shit! That’s amazing. I wonder what other jobs are particularly awful when hungover? I have a friend who’s a hairdresser and she said shampoo smells DISGUSTING when she’s hungover.

  12. After a couple hits of the snooze button, scrolling twitter bleary eyed for thirty minutes, then rushing around getting dressed and ready in the remaining ten.

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      That’s so me. I just social media myself awake every morning.

  13. Erika 11 months ago

    Do NOT read. “Just a few pages” rapidly turns into “finish this chapter” and then, “but it’s only a few more to finish the book” at which point devastation hits as you realise this is book one of a series….

    • Author
      Smaggle 11 months ago

      Actually that’s a good point… perhaps a magazine? Or just one article in the newspaper?

  14. Jasmine 11 months ago

    My morning routine is rock solid: I set the alarm for 7.15 and allow one hit of the snooze button. At 7.25 … I wake up and browse the internet for the next 35 minutes. I shit you not, I could be sleeping in that time but I’m a morning person, so I just respond to emails, check FB etc til 8am. Then it’s get my son out of bed, make his breakfast while he’s getting dressed, while he eats breakfast I’m in the shower, we both brush our teeth together just before leaving the house. It’s all done in 30 minutes.

    Except this ONE TIME. Just as my six year old son stepped through the front door and onto the front porch, I realised his pants were on inside out AND back to front. I didn’t mean to yell but I was trying to get his attention, so I’m like, ‘OI KID YOUR PANTS ARE INSIDE OUT STOP RIGHT THERE.’

    We have this super nervous, hyper protective German Shepherd. She’s at the door with my son, hears me yelling, and she’s all HELL NO YOU DON’T WOMAN and immediately moves defensively between me and my son. I’m in the house, she’s one step out on the porch, and my son is on the far side of her.

    I realise right there that I’ve just created A Situation. Because if I continue to yell, the dog is just going to continue to stare me down. So I put on my sweet voice and I’m all, “Freya darling, I need you to move.” But she just stares at me. As does my son. “Come on Freya, inside the house please.” Noooope. More staring. The minutes are ticking by, I’m trying to convince this bloody dog to move as I still need to fix the situation with my son’s pants, but she’s not going anywhere and my son is making zero effort to help, and my voice is starting to rise up again. The dog FINALLY moves … but she jumps up onto the seat on the porch rather than re-entering the house (she needs to be in the house for me to lock the door, but I’ll get back to this). WHATEVER, I have access to my son, I pull him back into the house and we fix the pants situation … but the dog is still stubbornly sulking on the front porch.

    I use sweet voice. I use stern voice. I try to imitate a deep male voice. FINALLY she jumps off the chair, walks to the front door, stops right in the doorway, looks me in the eye … and fucking pees. Right in the doorway. Just pisses this pool of pee that flows into the hallway on our polished floorboards, puddles in the grooves of door, seeps onto the welcome mat. Hot dog piss everywhere. All while looking me in the eye. A merry FUCK YOU AND YOUR YELLING, all for me.

    At which point I made the mistake of raising my voice again (‘Nooooo!’), sending the bloody dog scuttling right back out onto the porch again.

    We were late to school that day.

  15. Coco 11 months ago

    My espresso machine got ‘stolen’ by an ex-housemate so I don’t have one at home any more (sob!). My mornings now basically consist of getting out of the house as fast as possible so I can get my coffee and finally wake up. Not having caffeine means that I can be really forgetful so I’ve developed a set of ‘morning mantras’ to ensure that I remember everything. It starts with Shower, Shoes (I figure if I’ve managed footwear then chances are I’ve remembered to put on the rest of my clothes), Teeth and Mascara (ditto for the shoes thing with the rest of my makeup). Once I’m clean and (varying degrees of) presentable, I move on to Keys, Wallet, Phone, Lunch, Work Keys, Laptop. I say my mantras over and over again and always in the same order. I pretty much chant them to myself in my head until I get in the car because if I don’t I am guaranteed to leave my phone plugged in my my bed and my delicious lunch in the fridge. On the way to work I ALWAYS have music in the car that I can sing along to – it’s the one thing that’s guaranteed to improve my mood no matter how sleepy/cranky/rushed/hungover I am. I get coffee and breakfast to have at my desk and that’s my lovely quiet morning routine time while I check my emails (and frantically panic about what I’m going to teach Period 1).

  16. Sometimes I am woken with an unlady like sound emitted from my bottom. I usually then make sounds with my mouth to pretend I was just yawning. I quickly escape downstairs with my dog for 3 cups of coffee and hope my husband doesn’t remember anything except for the smell of coffee wafting through the house.

  17. Dove 11 months ago

    1. Wake up . Ignore the fact one of the kids are in the bed. 2. Make coffee. Ignore kids read FB and make bucket of coffee. 3. Continue to ignore kids and check the Dow jones. 4 Realize husband has dressed eaten and left house. 5. Remember i have kids and Scream at kids as I realize we are late. 6. Daydream of running a yoga retreat as I shove kids out a car.

  18. TwitchyCorner 11 months ago

    Dear Carly, I do all those, especially the ‘night before’ stuff and coffee is definitely the most vital thing that happens in the actual morning. I have 2, if not 3 mugs proclaiming that I am ‘allergic to mornings’ (Snoopy understands) but I have not resorted to wearing a medical condition bracelet just yet. My two main survival tips for you pre-family people: 1. find yourself a partner who can and will make you a decent daily coffee; 2. If you are ‘a.m. challenged’ have a really, REALLY good think about whether you should up the ante with parenthood. You might be the kind of person who doesn’t cope, overreacts and ends up with one of your kids patting you and singing ‘Soft Kitty’. Erm.

  19. claire 11 months ago

    1. get up after 2 snoozes
    2. turn on breakfast radio then use the bathroom
    3. get dressed in clothes laid out the night before
    4. makeup
    5. hair
    6. #ootd selfie
    7. out the door with prepacked breakfast to eat at work

  20. RTWgirl.com 8 months ago

    I open my eyes and try to sit quietly for a few minutes. Then I grab my phone and check emails. Then I go to kitchen and drink 2 glasses of water while I turn on the kettle to make coffee.

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