It doesn’t have to be difficult to get up in the morning ...
... and be fit for a day at work
Weekends are great! They give us the possibility to do whatever we feel like. To go outside and spend our days in the wilderness. To spontaneously pack our things and go on a road trip. Weekends are for recharging our batteries, for sleeping in, for late breakfasts in the sun, for long walks, for living our lives to the fullest. But then there are Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday – the good old work days. Sure, without them, weekends wouldn’t be any special but sometimes it is hard to get out of bed when you know that all that's waiting for you is a day filled with work. Even though we are lucky enough to have a job we absolutely love it took us YEARS to figure out a morning routine that made waking up and getting up easier for us.
We used to still be half asleep while drinking our first coffee of the day, sitting in front of our laptops 15 minutes after getting out of bed, our brains not yet fully functioning but work needed to be done, anyways and we followed the call. Unfortunately, that feeling of 'not yet fully functioning' always had quite the impact on the rest of our day... every day. We were tired most of the time, drained and not as motivated as we would have wished for. At some point, we decided that we had to find a way to change that situation which is when we started trying different routines. Over the years a few stuck with us and in this article, we will share those with you. You might struggle with the same issue and maybe our routine might help you to start your work days more energetic.
Tip No 1:
Don’t listen to those standard tips you find everywhere!
They might make you feel even worse. “Always get up way earlier than you need to”, for example. We think that isn't really a good piece of advice. If you love being in bed and you feel like enjoying it for as long as possible if you like snuggling in for a bit because it makes you happy - just do it! Whatever makes you feel good is the right choice because we believe that the feeling you get up with has a huge impact on the rest of your day. Stop burdening yourself with a bad conscience just because someone else is telling you that he or she always gets up especially earlier to exercise, prepare a perfectly arranged Acai Bowl and write a list of what life goals to achieve this day. We might be exaggerating a little but you might get where we’re going with this. We like to stay in bed a few more minutes after our alarm rang. Mornings are for cuddling, snoozing and dreaming.
Another tip we totally disagree with is having a cold shower in the morning to wake up your body. Uhm, no thanks! We tried it for a while, forcing ourselves to give it a go and then just came out of the shower freezing and grumpy. Nope, not for us. A third tip that made us nothing but angry when putting it to a test was placing our alarm out of reach so that we HAD to get up to turn it off. We can’t believe we even tried that. We did so during summer, though - think about how awful that must be in winter … no, no, no!
You’ve probably heard of the next hack, it is one you find everywhere these days: positive thinking. As much as we love thinking about positive stuff we feel there is a line. If the thoughts come naturally then we would agree with this. But repeating a Mantra someone else came up with, every single morning? Standing in front of the mirror, smiling at yourself, telling yourself that this is gonna be a good day? That is something we never even tried because it sounds just wrong, not like us, not like authenticity.
So what we'd suggest is: listen to your guts! If you try too hard, changing your morning routine to rituals that don’t make you happy at all, on the contrary, frustrate you – quit them! The most important thing is to find your very own balance and to only do what makes YOU feel good because a great day results from an equally great start to it.
Tip No 2:
Have breakfast, no wait, a delicious breakfast!
We all know that healthy eating plays a huge part in physical and mental well-being. We tried a few healthy breakfast options by now and not all of them convinced us. One that definitely did, though was the 'green smoothy' (not all green, rather mixed with fruits). It took us a while to figure out a recipe that we actually liked. The worst thing we ever drank was a spinach/celery smoothie. We were taking a few nips of the green brew while trying not to barf and then threw it away. Vitamins and all aside, that taste just can’t be good for your mental health. 😉 So we started creating blends we actually liked and came up with some perfect recipes for a healthy AND tasty breakfast.
Here they are
Juice of one orange
a handful of spinach
50 ml of Skyr
a few walnuts or almonds
two tbsp of honey
Put all the ingredients into a mixer and blend.
Red smoothie (bowl):
1 handful of fresh spinach
1 handful of frozen raspberries
1 handful of frozen mango
1 chunk of frozen kale
some lemon grass
1 cup of almond or coconut milk
Put all in a blender and mix until smooth and creamy, then fill into a bowl.
1 handful of sugar-free cereal (of your choice)
1 handful of Goji berries
1 handful of nuts of choice (we use almonds, walnuts, and hazelnuts)
1 tablespoon of dried dates
We have this rule to have no rules for breakfast, though. Sometimes we drink a smoothie, sometimes we mash a banana, add fresh lemon juice, some raspberries, honey or date syrup and mix it with oat flakes. If we are in the mood for a croissant we eat a croissant - with jam and butter - but we always make sure to eat some fresh fruits with it. We try to eat well-balanced, healthy food is just as important as soul food. We honestly couldn’t live without waffles, pancakes and bagels days in between all the healthy options (but whoever could, right?) Thing is, we need something delicious in the morning and by now we have a good range of healthy choices fulfilling this requirement, as well.
Tip No 3:
Celebrate your first coffee of the day!
We LOVE coffee and a morning without a freshly brewed coffee is a bad morning. You could even say it is our favorite part of the day. We are always looking forward to this very first cup and take our time to enjoy it. We try to avoid drinking our first coffee of the day while already starting to work because we need those ten to fifteen minutes to mentally prepare for the day. To calm down, maybe write some thoughts down that cross our heads, sometimes we even take it on a short early morning walk with us. This is the only thing we ever get out of a bed a few minutes earlier than necessary.
Tip No 4:
Train yourself to get up at the perfect time for your personal biorhythm!
You really want to get more out of the day and therefore wake up earlier but you are annoyed only thinking about setting the alarm half an hour before your usual wake-up time? We might have a solution for you! We always wanted to get up earlier but no matter what we tried it always ended up with us being in a bad mood after waking up and staying in bed even longer. Until we tried this easy trick. We set the alarm five minutes earlier for a week and then another five the week after and so on until we reached the time we had wished for. It was so easy, worked just perfectly and it even helped us finally finding our personal biorhythm. For years, we had worked against it, going to bed too late and therefore waking up later than we wanted. We conditioned ourselves in the wrong direction and never felt good about it. Luckily, those days are behind us. By now, we go to sleep fairly early and get out of bed quite early, as well. It doesn't mean that this little hack works for everyone, though! We are no fans of stereotypes - the early bird thing is something society came up with and as a result, night-owls got a record of being lazy - how cliché. That they simply work long hours ‘till late at night because that is their personal biorhythm tends to be overlooked. It is proven that is doesn’t do you any good if you try living against your rhythm, so find out what yours is and if your job and your everyday life allow it, live by it. If not, find a compromise that works for you. When you are self-employed like us you, of course, have much more freedom of doing so. It is a luxury we are really grateful for. Bottom line is: don’t force yourself out of bed in the early morning hours just because it works fine for someone else, as it might not do the trick for you. But if you want to get up earlier do it step by step to give your body time to adjust.
Tip No 5:
Get an alarm with a NICE ringtone!
Why the hell are most of the alarm sounds so awful that you want to throw the device against the wall as soon as it goes off? Who thought it might be nice to let people wake up in shock? Sure, sounds of the sea or birds singing might not get the result you are looking for when setting an alarm for you to wake up but luckily there are other options today. For example, clocks that use daylight to wake you up, or play the radio or (what we prefer) your favorite songs. A while ago we read somewhere that you should never ever change your alarm tone – excuse us??? WHY? We change the tone every other week because we want to wake up with whatever song we like best at the moment, songs that make us cheerful, euphoric, enthusiastic, eager to start into a new day. That is how we wake up with a smile on our faces. Always remember: if your day starts with you being in a great mood it is very likely to be an accordingly nice day! Even if something might not go as planned, it takes more time to ruin your already good mood than it would take turning your already bad mood into a REALLY shitty one.
Tip No 6:
Contrast shower (hot/cold) for your face!
As we mentioned earlier we would never ever have a cold shower in the morning, but what we find quite refreshing is a hot/cold face wash. Changing between cold and warm water for about a minute and cleaning our faces with a refreshing gel helps us to wake up. Afterward, we put on facial cream, spray on our favorite perfumes and voilá, we feel much better, already. Both of us prefer having a shower in the evening, anyways – one reason is time (we want to save as much as we can in the morning) and another one is that we love the feeling of going to bed clean. A warm bath also helps us to fall asleep easier.
Tip No 7:
An easy makeup routine!
It doesn't take us much time putting on make-up in the morning unless we have special plans. If nothing super important is on the agenda (taking pictures, attending meetings, etc.) but we still want to look fresh and put together, all we use is a bb cream, a bit of rouge, concealer, brow gel, mascara and maybe one color of eyeshadow OR lipstick. Sometimes we wear only lipstick, some rouge, and mascara, it already does the trick. Both are done in less than 10 minutes. It hasn’t been that way all our lives. We used to put on way more makeup in the morning and it sometimes took us up to an hour. We had absolutely no fun doing so. By now, we feel way more confident in our bodies (and with our bare faces) and feel much better with either of those two options mentioned above, than with a heavily painted face. If you are not in the mood for make-up (like us, now and then) or you don’t like it at all, our motto is nothing matters, as long as you look neat. Luckily, we finally have the freedom today as women that when it comes to how we look it doesn’t matter if we wear makeup or not. If you love doing it and it makes you happy, we say go for it but if you don’t, just leave it be!
So this is what gives us a fresh and happy start into the morning. We hope some tips might help you with your morning routine and with enjoying getting up to the fullest. Because it is a gift that we even get to get out of bed, every morning.
Mornings are always the beginning of a possibly great day!
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