• Career

Morning Habits for Success and Why They Work

  • Helina Robbins
  • May 13th, 2022

What does your morning routine look like? 🌤️

We hear all the time that forming healthy habits in the morning is the key to starting off our day right.

But why is that so?

We discuss the most helpful morning habits for success and why they work.


Morning Habits for Success


#1 – Ditch the alarm clock


Our circadian rhythm regulates our sleep cycle, and it is recommended we get 8 hours of sleep every night.

Although alarm clocks help us wake up at a specific time, the abrupt sound of an alarm can cause more harm than good. Being an artificial way of waking up, alarms can disrupt our natural sleeping cycle. Plus, this sudden awakening and sound of an alarm can trigger the release of stress hormones before our day has even started.

How can we get ourselves to wake up naturally? ☀️

Light is an important factor that helps our bodies distinguish between night and day. Therefore, one way of letting your body clock take charge is by having your blinds ajar to allow natural sunlight to shine through each morning. In time, you will notice a pattern start to emerge and your body will begin to wake up at a similar time each morning.


#2 – Don’t reach for your phone 📱🚫


With most of us keeping our mobile phones on a bedside table, it is often too easy for us to reach over for it in the morning to update ourselves on what we have missed.

However, if the first thing we do is go through our emails or scroll through Instagram, we are getting ourselves into a negative or anxious mindset by already making social comparisons and reviewing all the tasks we need to get done that day before we’ve even set foot out of bed.

Instead, focus your attention internally.

Use this time to calm and check in with yourself by taking a few deep breaths.

If you find it too tempting to reach for your phone in the morning, make a point of moving it elsewhere in your room to make it more difficult for you to turn to once you wake up. By making desired behaviours easy, and undesired behaviours hard, we can start to optimise our decisions to help us make better choices.


#3 – Swap out your morning coffee for water ☕🔁


Is the first drink you reach for a coffee? It may be worth rethinking your choice.

Although some of us may feel that a coffee is what best gets us up and alert in the morning, after 8 hours of sleep, your body is calling out for water – its key nutrient for health and functioning.

Water is what best hydrates us. By having a substantial amount of it in the morning, it can help revitalise us by making us feel more awake, alert, and refreshed. As well as not being as hydrating, drinking caffeinated drinks can elevate your cortisol levels that are already high in the morning.

Why is this?

When we first wake up, we have a peak in cortisol levels that then dip later on in the morning. This is known as the cortisol awakening response. High levels of cortisol increase anxiety. By drinking caffeinated drinks, you can be increasing your cortisol levels even further – elevating any anxiety you may be feeling.

Therefore, to avoid this, save your coffee for later in the day and swap it out for a large glass of water.


#4 – Get moving 🚶‍♀️


Exercise improves both our physical and mental health. Not only does exercise makes us feel energised in the morning, the release of dopamine and other chemicals have beneficial impacts on our mood and anxiety levels. As well as these benefits, exercising helps to clear our minds and make us feel mentally ready to take on the day, which can significantly improve our productivity when we start work.


#5 – Reduce decision-making 🤔


Another way to improve productivity and reduce morning anxiety is to plan out as much of your morning as you can the night before. This will then reduce the number of decisions you need to make the next day.

For example, you could:

  • Have your bag packed 🎒
  • Decide on what you will wear 👔
  • Decide on what you will have for breakfast 🍴
  • Have your lunch ready and packed 🥪


Decision fatigue is when mental fatigue for decision-making increases as the number of decisions we need to make throughout the day increases. This in turn, then impacts our ability to make further choices as the day goes on. By minimising the number of decisions we need to make in the morning, we can prevent decision fatigue from appearing so early on in the day. 


#6 – Make time for self-reflection 💭


In the midst of a busy morning, it can become all too easy to go through each day on autopilot.

Where we can, we should try to make time for morning self-reflection to review where we are and where we want to be. This can help us pick up on anything that may be bothering us or needs our attention.

A good method of self-reflection is by setting our intentions for the day – what do we hope to achieve? 🌟

Reminding ourselves of this will help us lead a day with intention, get ourselves in the right mindset, and get the most out of the day as we can. A simple, but often overlooked morning habit for success.


“The secret to your success is found in your daily routine”

– John C. Maxwell


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Yellow Bricks is a female-led Executive Search Recruitment company hiring exceptional senior people at a senior level for scaling organisations. Working with seed through to FTSE 50 organisations, we hire interim and permanent staff to deliver our global clients with talent they need to reach their milestones. Find out more.

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