Let’s be real honest… some of us need some super jumper cables to revive us and jumpstart our lives every morning. (Yes, we call it Coffee! Preferably with french vanilla creamer to be exact.)
Our groans when the alarm goes off sound similar to our car engines on a cold morning trying to turn over… and over… and over again. Whether you’re a parent who’s feeling the drag, a kidmin or other ministry leader who can’t seem to find the time to get it all done, or anyone else, let me quickly give you five ways to jumpstart your mornings in the coming year.
I challenge you to try these things for just one week, 7 days, and see if you don’t find yourself more productive as a parent or leader, and well pleased with your results. I’m not guaranteeing that you’ll like these 5 things, but I can pretty well guarantee that if you’ll discipline yourself to do them, you’ll gladly reap the benefits. So here they are, 5 Ideas to Jumpstart your mornings in 2016.
1) Get out of bed immediately when you’re alarm goes off
I know this sounds absurdly crazy for some of us, but why should we continue wasting 10, 20, 30 minutes or even an hour of our day every day trying to get more sleep that’s not even good for us, and actually slows us down throughout the rest of the day?
For me personally, it gives me a headache throughout the day if I push the snooze button multiple times in the morning.
Years ago, a friend and I decided to both try this out – to wake up “snooze-less” for two weeks, and hold each other accountable each morning. We both found that it was actually quite beneficial to our daily routine. I can’t say I’ve always been consistent since then, but I’m finding it’s value once again as I’m trying to make my mornings a time of peak productivity.
Try it… if you dare. You’ll feel more refreshed at the start of your day (of course, that is, after the initial painful forcing of yourself to get up out of bed.)
2) Drink a glass of water before you eat or start your day
I’m going to guess that all of us need to drink more water than we do. A great way to start is by holding off on breakfast or that first cup of coffee until we’ve first downed a good sized glass of water to replenish and rehydrate our system after the night’s rest.
This is one of our family’s goals for the coming year… to drink more water this year than any other… And it all starts for each of us as soon as we wake up. The benefits are too many to list, but here’s a few… it purifies the body, helps you eat less and loose weight, and even forces you to take more breaks throughout the day 😃.
Try it out, and you’re going to feel more refreshed, more healthy, and less weighed down. God made water for our bodies, and we need a lot more of it than we get.
3) Get up one hour earlier than normal
For years I would wake up around 7am, giving myself an hour to get up and ready to leave for work. Until one day I realized I was cheating myself out of potentially some of the most productive time of my day – early morning. (It’s the quietest time of the day, everyone else is still asleep, and my mind is sharper than at other times.)
If you want to get up an hour earlier, it’s really pretty simple, don’t miss this… go to bed one hour earlier! Most adults need 7-8 hours of sleep to get a full night’s rest. Find out what your need is, and then plan your sleep accordingly so you can get up and be productive in the morning.
I think you’ll find that it’s not just your mornings that become better, but you’ll actually notice the benefit of it the entire rest of the day.
4) Have a specific plan
Getting up an hour earlier does you no good if you don’t have a plan for what you’re going to do with that extra hour. (If you’re just going to wake up an hour earlier to watch Good Morning America, then you might as well stay in bed.)
Write your morning game plan down on a piece of paper. If you’ve now got two hours in the morning instead of just one, it might look something like this (you could allot 30 minutes for each)…
- Wake up and get ready for the day
- Spend time alone with God in Bible reading and prayer
- Eat breakfast and/or exercise
- Spend time writing, reading, or journaling
Whatever you decide to do, have a specific plan.
And now for the biggin’…
5) Say No to Facebook until after your morning routine
I know, some of you just about spilt or spewed your coffee when you read that.
Statistically, 80% of smartphone users check social media within the first 15 minutes of waking up. And, as I’m sure you know, sometimes it eats up the first 30 minutes or more of their day. You don’t have t0 be a statistic. You can be an overcomer of the little red notification button. I believe in you. (I know, I know, it’s calling you’re name as soon as you wake up and see it.)
For some of you, don’t even look at or open FB, because once you do, you’ve just shot your morning game plan in the foot.
The average person spends 87 minutes a day on social media Monday through Thursday, and over 160 minutes a day on the weekends. However, also on average, a person can read about 12,000 words per hour and write about 1,000 words per hour. (this blog post is a little over 1,000 words, in case you’re wondering) Think about that… How many books could a person read… or write, notes of encouragement could be easily written and sent, or how many prayers go un-prayed because we’re just too occupied with something like FB novelty?
Think of what you could do in the coming year if you scratched off an extra hour of your day, every day, and implemented these five things. I have a sneaking suspicion that you, your family, and maybe even your friends will notice both the difference in you and also the greater difference you’re making beyond you.
Well, there you have it. The question now is, will you do it? I’d challenge you to take on any one of these 5 things and implement them into your morning routine. Or if you’re up for it, take on all 5, for just one week, and then look back and consider the benefits. You might just decide not to stop.
I’d love to hear how it goes. Also, I’d love to hear which one of the five you feel is the most important. You can share your thoughts by leaving a comment.