If you’ve ever read articles interviewing some of the most successful people on the planet, you’ll find they all have one thing in common: a morning routine.
From business moguls to lifestyle gurus to dynamic leaders, they all tout that their key to success lies in a morning routine made up of rituals that leave them feeling centered, energized, and with a positive mindset to tackle the day.
Although everyone’s routine is bound to be different, several rituals seem to pop up more frequently than others.
Here are five that get frequent mentions for their life-changing benefits that we can vouch for:
Drink a glass of water with lemon
It’s no secret that proper hydration is paramount to your health and energy, but drinking a warm glass of water with lemon in the morning is more than just a way to jumpstart your day with some H2O.
That’s because when you add lemon to your water, you’re not only getting a huge boost of Vitamin C (more than your recommended daily value), but you’re also helping to balance your body’s overall pH by moving your body into a more alkaline, and less acidic state.
Also, the citric acid in lemon helps to stimulate the liver by maximizing enzyme function, which leads to better detoxification.
But don’t forget, you’ll want to mix your lemon juice with lukewarm warm water because if your water is too hot, you’ll break down the enzymatic properties of the lemon juice, and if the water is too cold, it’ll hinder the fruit’s digestive bonuses.
Express gratitude with writing
We’re not talking “Dear Diary” type of writing, but if that’s your style, by all means, go for it! When we say to express your gratitude with writing, this can be a mere 1 to 2 sentence passage, or even a 3-5 word entry.
It doesn’t matter how long your writing log is, but the act of recording what you’re thankful for has marked effects on your happiness levels, relationship satisfaction, and overall health, just to name a few benefits.
In fact, a daily gratitude journal can increase your long-term well-being by more than 10 percent, which is equivalent to the impact of doubling your salary. That’s proof in the pudding that money doesn’t always buy happiness!
According to the Gratitude Journal app (which we highly suggest downloading!), “By practicing awareness of the positive things in life, we fight off the brain’s natural tendency to scan for and spot the negatives. As a result, we train our brains to be more positive and thus happier.”
Oil pull first thing after waking up
Morning is when your mouth has the highest bacteria count, which is why oil pulling is the most effective first thing in the morning.
Since the bacteria count in your mouth decreases after eating due to swallowing much of it with your food, pulling first thing in the morning ensures that you’re pulling out that bacteria, detoxing, and getting rid of it before your body can ingest and absorb it throughout the day.
According to Dr. Bruce Fife, with a consistent oil pulling practice you’ll experience better oral health in the form of fresher breath, stronger gums, and a diminished chance of developing cavities. Overall health benefits are also numerous and include things like alleviated allergies, migraines, and TMJ.
Also, as with many daily habits, practicing oil pulling in the morning will help you with staying consistent, which is the key to truly seeing benefits of any health ritual.
Without a doubt, this is the ritual that takes the most practice to make a habit, but it’s also one of the most beneficial and life-changing.
Meditation is the practice of focused attention on breathing and letting the mind come to a state of rest while still being conscious. It sounds like a tall order, and it is, but with continued practice, you’ll notice a difference in many aspects of your well-being including your attitude, energy and productivity levels, and your overall health.
As an example of how meditation can benefit your physical health, a study found that those who suffer from chronic pain experienced a 50 percent or more reduction in symptoms, which led to NIH endorsing meditation as an effective relief of chronic pain.
And in brain imaging scans of meditators, scientists saw significant increases in thickness of regions of the cortex, which is associated with higher functions like memory and decision making, showing that meditation does in fact put mind over matter.
You didn’t think we’d leave a good morning sweat session off the list, did you?
Although exercise is beneficial for your overall health no matter what time of day you choose to do it, lacing up your workout shoes in the morning does have several added perks.
First, when sticking to an exercise routine, working out in the morning helps with staying consistent. If you make it your first task of the day, your schedule won’t have a chance to interfere or derail your efforts in the form of fatigue, diminished motivation, or unexpected events that need your attention.
You’ll also be preparing your body and mind to be more energized and focused throughout the day, and it doesn’t matter what your job title is, both of those things are always nice to have on your side.
Additionally, when you workout in the morning, you’re boosting your metabolism, which will have the opportunity to work for you during the rest of the day meaning you’re getting a better pay off with your workout.
Now before you flip your schedule on its head, start off by incorporating just one or two of these rituals into your morning routine and work on gradually building up your frequency until those things are daily habits.
Remember, creating life changes are just as much about balance and consistency as they are about the actual ritual you’re adding to your life, so set yourself up for success by being patient yet focused.
Have any morning rituals you swear by or ways you worked to make certain rituals a habit? Share your morning routines and tips on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter so we can all have better mornings and healthier days!