8 Things to STOP Doing When You Wake Up in the Morning - Her Espresso

8 Things to STOP Doing When You Wake Up in the Morning

There is a ton of stuff out there on the internet about morning routines.  There are tons of books, blogs, podcast episodes, but it seems like the majority of those are focused on what you should be adding to your morning routine,  what you should do.  I wanna take a little bit of a different tack and focus on what you should stop doing in your morning routine.

Checking your phone

Yes, that magical little rectangle of plastic and silicone in your pocket.  If you wake up in the morning and immediately check social media on your phone,  you need to stop doing this for two important reasons. 

Reason # 1

if you make checking social media the first action of your day then the first action of your day is giving in to a craving for novelty and that counteracts all of the work that you’ve been doing to build your focus muscle. 

By contrast, if you wait a little bit before you check those feeds and maybe do some other things like breakfast or working out or reading a book for a bit,  you are telling your brain that,  yes, you have to wait before you can go check all those novelty-inducing social media feeds.  And that’s gonna make you much more able to focus  on your work later on in the day

Reason # 2

why you should stop checking social media in the morning is because if you’re anything like me,  you tend to just grab the phone and start checking your feeds in bed.  And you intend to only check your feeds for about five minutes but you end up looking at them for 20 minutes sometimes and from personal experience, I can tell you there is no healthy position to be looking at a phone in bed. 

You’re either looking at it with your arm above your head or you’re propped up on one elbow.  Either way, you are putting your body in a bad postural position and if you do this enough you can actually end up causing nerve damage.  I’ve actually caused nerve damage in my own arms before and it is really painful and impedes my work and it takes a surprisingly long time to heal.  So, in short, use your bed as a place for sleeping.

Check your social media when you’re out of bed  and do it a little bit after you wake up.

Eating an unhealthy breakfast 

Eating a protein and fat-heavy breakfast can actually decrease feelings of anxiety.  Even putting that aside, I know a lot of people like to wake up  and they eat a breakfast full of sugar or simple carbs  and neither of those things  are going to set you up for  sustained healthy energy throughout the day.  And this is not me getting on a high horse here. 

This is yet another area where  I actually struggle with temptation  because it can be very easy for me to fall into a pattern  while I wake up every single day,  convince myself I need to work right away  and then go to Starbucks and get a breakfast sandwich.  And those things are not healthy.

 So, you might be asking yourself,  how do I make sure that I’m eating a healthy breakfast  on a regular basis?  And one of the easiest ways to do this  is to bulk prep your meals.  This basically means taking one or two days a week  to bulk cook a bunch of food in advance  so it’s really easy and quick to grab it in the mornings. 

The great thing about this is that it’s efficient.  You don’t have to get out the pots and pans  seven different times.  You don’t have to clean them seven different times.  It’s just one or two times  and you reap the time saving benefits. 

One really great candidate for bulk prepping  is hard-boiled eggs  because if you have a pressure cooker  you can cook them really, really quickly  and the shells are very easy to peel off  and if you don’t, you can easily do it in a pot.  It’s a little harder to peel the shells off,  it’s still pretty easy  and saves you a lot of time.  Or you can do what I love to do  which is making egg bakes in a casserole dish.

Hitting the snooze button on your alarm

 And you knew this was coming on the list.  So, aside from the fact that hitting the snooze button  is basically denying yourself good quality sleep  that you could’ve had  because you are interrupting your sleep cycle  and then attempting to get into a new one,  which is going to be inevitably interrupted early again.  Hitting the snooze button is also a terrible idea  because doing it is admitting defeat  as your very first action of the day. 

If you hit the snooze button on your alarm,  it means that you had set an intention  to wake up at a specific time the night before  and then you failed.  So, do yourself a favor and get out of bed  the moment your alarm goes off. 

Now, this might sound a little bit weird  but I’ve actually found it pretty helpful  to picture myself setting this intention  and telling it to a specific person.  And the person who always comes to mind for me  is Jocko Willink, who is currently a podcaster and author  but was a Navy seal  and, to be honest is somebody that I would definitely  not want to disappoint in real life.

Complaining

Seriously, a lot of people love  to wake up in the morning and complain.  They complain about how early it is, having to go to work, how tired they feel.  And the problem with complaining  is that the words that you choose to use,  the way that you choose to express yourself  actually has a tangible effect on your state of mind  and your level of motivation. 

So, instead of waking up in the morning and complaining, why not think about what you have to grateful about,  what you can be positive about.  If you dwell on these things,  you’re gonna be an overall happier person.

Cleaning up your living space and your work area.

 Now this is definitely not a bad thing to do  but I’m putting it on this list  because I think it is much better to do it the night before.  You might have heard me talk in the past  about a concept called Clear to Neutral.  This basically means setting your work area  or you living area back to its neutral state  after you’re done using this. 

And the reason you wanna do this  is that the next time you come to use it,  which, in the case of your living space  would be the next day when you wake up,  you want it to be in a state that is already usable. 

When your living space, your workspace  is ready to be used immediately when you start the day  you don’t have to waste any of your willpower  or your time getting it ready.  It’s just ready to go. 

So, when your building your before bed routine  build in a little bit of time  for cleaning your space up and clearing it back to neutral.  Your future self is gonna very appreciative. 

Planning your day 

Now, planning your day in the morning  can be very useful for some people.  Some people love to have that  as part of their morning routine  but for other people it can actually be a lot better  to plan their day the night before. 

Personally, I find that when I wake up  to a concrete plan that I set up the night before,  I almost feel kind of beholden to my past self  and I’m much more clear on the direction  of going to go in immediately. 

It’s kinda similar to how Barack Obama  used to outsource the decision for what outfit  he was going to wear during the day  because he didn’t want to deal with that decision.  He already had a ton of other decisions  and that was just going to make him less focused. 

Starting your day with negative news 

And if you’re the kind of person  who likes to check Reddit or the news app on your phone,  this is something that you need to be wary rectangle of.  As somebody who likes to browse Reddit,  I mean, heck, I’ve even got  my own subreddit.  I am well aware that many of the default subreddits  on reddit.com are filled with tons of negative news. 

And yes, you might wanna keep up to date on world events  but if you’re waking up every single morning  and bombarding yourself with a ton of negative stories,  that’s gonna put you in a negative state of mind.  And it’s also likely to send you down rabbit holes  that end up wasting a ton of your time.

 So, if you are going to wake up and check news,  check your feeds, if that’s something you like to do,  tailor those feeds to be full of positive  or interesting information not negative news. 

Or, if you wanna do something even more effective,  just read a book in the morning.  Make that part of your morning routine  and then check your feeds later on during the day.  Again, if you wake up in the morning  and you start with some long-form content,  that’s building that focus muscle. 

Getting up at different times every morning

 If you don’t currently have  a at least somewhat consistent time  that you wake up in the morning,  if you’re getting up really late on the weekends  and really early during the days  or you have totally different wake-up times during the week,  then you are negatively impacting  your body’s circadian rhythm  and negatively impacting the quality of your sleep. 

So, as best as you can, try to establish  a consistent wake-up time for yourself.  And I know a bunch of you are gonna ask me  can I still sleep in on the weekends?  And, biologically speaking, you would be best off  by having a consistent wake-up time  that includes the weekends. 

Your body doesn’t have like a special,  magical weekend mode.  It doesn’t switch over all of its biological processes  because you’re not in school or work. 

But that doesn’t mean that you are going to ruin your life  by sleeping in on the weekends.  And to be quite honest, I actually sleep in  about an hour later on Saturdays and Sundays  than when I get up during the week. 

So, if you wanna be like me,  you don’t wanna be completely uber efficient,  then go ahead and do that  but from a scientific perspective,people like consistent wake-up time is better  than an inconsistent one.

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