25 Morning Routine Ideas to Help Make Waking Up Actually Kind of Enjoyable

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Mornings can be such a pain point for me. No matter what, I’m still in shock when one comes around again and again. In other words, I’m human. So I’ve been on a lifelong quest to find rituals, practices and products that make my mornings as smooth and welcoming as possible. Below I’m sharing some of my favorite morning routine ideas, along with suggestions gathered from friends. Rise n’ shine, honeys.

Needless to say, I set my alarm for 5AM so I can make sure to have an hour to myself. My kids do lots of wonderful things, but sleeping in is not one of them. This way, I’m truly happy to see them when they wake up.

This high-tech alarm clock option helps you greet the day with a natural mood light and pleasing melody. More than one of my friends told me they put their alarm clock out of reach, across the room, so they can’t lean on that snooze button.

One of my friends has the brilliant idea of putting her slippers and robe right beside the bed so she can roll her body right into them upon waking. It makes getting out of a cozy, warm bed a little less shocking, especially in winter.

I’m all googly-eyed over these colorful bed sheets, which would be a luxurious way to greet the day. How can you not feel energized after seeing those?

I love Trader Joe’s Tea Tree Tingle Body Wash. I squeeze a dollop in my hands, rub them together, take a few deep inhales and I’m good to go.

Yes, a towel warmer seems like something you could only attain if you’re related to Logan Roy. But go ahead and splurge. You deserve it.

Plan one fun thing for the day. Whether it’s a date with a friend, or something as small as what you’re going to have for lunch, make a plan and stick to it.

These shower steamer pods are an easy way to achieve an at-home spa. (You can also DIY it.)

Whatever vitamins or pills help Mommy make it through her day, put them in a pill box for a charming change of pace. It’s the little things, really.

The mothers of America are in big trouble if there’s ever a coffee shortage since coffee was the #1 answer during my informal poll. An Ember mug is the perfect solution to having your coffee stay hot all morning.

My friend Chelsea swears by the Takeya Patented Deluxe Cold Brew Coffee Maker for those of us who like to start off the day with an iced coffee.

Another friend, Jessica, pairs her hot lemon water with a stone face roller she keeps in the fridge. I like that hot/cold combo.

Personally, I can’t wait to try a breakfast board this weekend. Or flip the roles and have your kids make you breakfast. Our lives changed this year when our 8-year-old was inspired by his best friend to start making his own lunch. Now I’m thinking he can take care of breakfast, too.

Set aside anything protein-packed you can grab and go for breakfast, like quiche muffins, pre-packed bags of nuts, hard-boiled eggs. If you think you don’t need this rapid egg cooker in your life, think again. It was a peak pandemic purchase in my house and it makes me smile every time I use it.

My friend Carrie suggests getting your brain juices flowing by doing the NYT pangram puzzle.

Your kids couldn’t care less on those mornings when you’ve had a little too much fun the night before. One of my friends, Sarah, is into these Cheers Anti-Hangover Pills, which are supposed to clear your head. Sounds supernatural.

There’s a reason everyone you know is hooked on Wordle: it takes very little commitment. Unlike other mobile games, it wakes up your brain but doesn’t hook you in for hours at a time. And that’s how you spell R-E-L-A-X.

The world would be a genuinely nicer place if everyone took 45 seconds to read the Poem-a-Day newsletter.

Play your hype song. Find whatever song you’d play to walk into the ring. Here’s mine. Then either crank it in the car on the way to work or while you’re getting ready.

If you can’t fit in a workout, try a prison style variation of planks and pushups. Alternate one minute of plank with ten pushups until you run out of time or just can’t take it anymore. Should give you a sufficient burst of energy.

I can’t be bothered with shoelaces in the morning. Slip-on shoes are the answer for walking the dog or getting the kids to school. Your feet will thank you.

Nothing says tired more than looking in the mirror at your saggy baggies. I’ve been nursing a sample of Clinique puffy eye cream and will probably go ahead and buy a jar. And I also like under eye patches if I have the time while I’m getting ready. Do these products actually do anything to fight the battle of woman vs. nature vs. genetics? Who knows. But they feel goooood.

Have a couple go-to bedhead tamers. How about a perky hair clip to tame your frazzled hair or a soft hat to cover it completely?

Even though she just lives across town, I call my mom almost every morning after school drop off for a quick five minute chat. If you have a friend you can do a micro-chat with, program that time into a habit that will brighten both your days.

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Toby Lowenfels is a writer and mom of three in Nashville. Follow her daily musings at @tobyfels.