Just like the start of a good book sets the tone for the rest of the novel, our mornings set the tone for the rest of our day. And just like we want the beginning of a novel to lure us in and engage us enough to continue reading, we want our mornings to make us feel alive and ready to take on whatever the day throws at us.
Of course, the perfect morning routine is different for every individual, but to provide a little bit of inspiration to readers, we’ve reached out to women around the world and asked them to share their productive morning routines. From Australia to India, we’re featuring mothers, entrepreneurs, liveaboards and more, who have all agreed to share their diverse morning routines – the routine that sets their day off, what gets them out of bed and how it prepares them for the rest of the day.
We hope that these productive morning routines serve to inspire you, as much as they have inspired us.
10 Productive Morning Routines to Discover
Khushboo, a Communications Consultant and part-time travel blogger from Munni of all Trades, shares her morning routine from her home in India.
I begin my day at 5:00am with some decaffeinated coffee and nuts. I go for a 30-minute jog around 5:30am. After taking a quick shower, I have my breakfast and start working on my daily planner. I used to be very disorganized until I realized that writing things down keeps me focused. My daily planner is one of the best investments that I have made recently. I can quickly plan my day and have a clear visual representation of how my day looks ahead. I am pleased when I can tick off all the things that I have completed throughout the day. I also take some time out to go over my gratitude journal that I generally fill the night before. It helps me begin the day on a positive note.
I am generally more focused in the morning. I have recently started using this time to pick up new skills. I have subscribed to a few podcasts and have signed up for digital courses that allow you to learn at your own pace. It is a great investment for me as I work in the field of communications and it is important to stay abreast with what’s new.
However, there are days when I am not up to it and feel a little overwhelmed. I try to read something light on these days. Sometimes I read an old favourite, a comic or even a magazine. I also try to carve out about 30 minutes every morning to work on my travel blog Munni of all Trades. At around 9:00am, I begin responding to work emails and attending meetings.
Nadia shares her morning routine as a high school science teacher in Perth, Western Australia. Learn more about her on her website Ms C’s Science Room!
My morning starts at 4am. Bleary-eyed, I turn off my alarm clock and jump out of bed straight away, or risk rolling over and falling back asleep. My first stop is my coffee machine. It’s set to start brewing just before I wake up, so my brain doesn’t have to produce a single thought between my bedroom and kitchen, which is essential at 4am! I sip my coffee on the couch rugged up in a blanket and watch mindless YouTube videos while I slowly wake up. I absolutely need these slow 20 minutes in the morning if I am to become a functioning human.
By the time 4:30am rolls around the caffeine has hit my veins and I’m ready to go. I spend the next 20 minutes of my morning getting some movement in. If it’s early in the week and I’m energised I’ll do a quick HIIT workout, but if I’m a little tired or stressed I’ll do a mindful yoga flow.
Following my workout, I’m feeling energised and motivated! I’m inspired in the morning, and I’m not yet burdened by the distractions that the day brings, so I’ll spend the next hour writing for my blog. This morning hour is strictly “me time” – just me and my writing.
At 6am I get ready for work. I’ll have a quick shower, touch up my hair, and do my 5 minute make-up routine. I’ll grab a piece of fruit for breakfast then have some cuddles with my cat before I’m out the door. I arrive at school around 7am, well before my colleagues. I love the extra time to set up my classroom and make sure my lessons and experiments for the day are ready to go. Staying organised helps keep the stress away which ensures I’m in the right mood to teach my students for the rest of the day.
Our very own Abigail Ebejer shares her daily morning ritual before beginning a day’s work as Newsletter Editor at Dukes Avenue!
Whenever I need to wake up at a particular time, I give myself 15 minutes to get out of bed as I have 4 alarms, set 5 minutes apart. Usually, during these 15 minutes, I do something which is not recommended by the experts: I browse Instagram. There were a few times where I felt like I was doing something wrong; however, I justify this by the fact that my Instagram feed is filled with positive affirmations and travel photography.
Once the 15 minutes are up, I head to the bathroom where I brush my teeth and apply my morning skincare routine. Then, it’s time for my favourite part of the morning: breakfast. I usually opt for either a chocolate berry porridge or a peanut butter banana milkshake, which I sometimes also have as an ice cream! On gym days, where I wake up when it’s still dark outside, breakfast is just a couple of rice cakes with peanut butter, but I forget all about it when I step outside at 05:00am and the air is still fresh and everything is so quiet – it’s probably my favourite part of the day.
Bonus tip: Someone once told me that you aren’t born a “non-morning person” but rather, it’s the environment you’re in that makes you like that. For me, as someone who has always considered myself as such, this was mind-blowing. And so, whenever my “non-morning persona” pops by, I try to remember this conversation and my perspective changes.
Liveaboard Zoe Amy of Breastfeedingmama.net shares her morning routine with her family on a yacht!
I recently moved my family onto a yacht, where we are in the middle of sailing (slowly) up the Australian East coast. Strangely, my morning routine is very similar to what it was on land. I tend to wake up naturally between 05.30am and 6am, and I sneak out of bed as quietly as possible. I’m a strong believer in attachment parenting and so I’m still breastfeeding and cosleeping with my 3 year old son. He needs a bit more sleep than me so I let him stay in bed.
Most mornings I like to get up on the deck and watch the sunrise while sipping on warm water with lemon juice and a little salt. I’m trying out intermittent fasting so I don’t eat until lunch time. It took a while to get used to but now it’s just a normal morning. Once my son and partner wake up I brush and floss my teeth, wash my face and eyes with cold water and put on serum, moisturiser and sunscreen.
If we are going off the boat I’ll sometimes put on makeup but most days I skip it. I had my eyebrows microbladed a few months back so I’m comfortable with just sunscreen and mascara. Once everyone is fed and clean, it’s time to take our dog to the beach to find a fire hydrant, and we usually have a walk on the beach or a play in a playground before I go back to my workspace and start my working day.
Juliet, a Ukraine-based blogger, serves up positivity and general well-being advice over on her blog Utterly Positive. Here’s what she does each morning!
I usually start my morning with setting a nice atmosphere for getting creative energy flowing right away. I light a candle (current fave is lemon + mint leaf by Bath & Body Works), pour a glass of water, and snuggle up with a book in my bean bag chair. I tend to read self-development books in the morning (but also relax with a fun fiction one before bed!). I’m currently reading “Unleash Your Inner Money Babe” which is about getting rid of negative beliefs, money and manifesting wealth as you imagine it. It has daily exercises so my current morning routine includes a bit of manifestation of some kind. I also aim to be more present and try to include at least one mindfulness activity per day, no matter what it is.
After that, I grab my gratitude journal and write a list of things I’m grateful for today. There are days when it’s hard to come up with more than 10, and sometimes I can easily scribble 25+ things without thinking much. In any case, it puts me in a mental state of gratitude in which positive energy flows through me! This high vibe lets me be more attentive to the little good things around me and generally be more motivated as the day goes on. The last part of my morning routine includes rolling out a mat and exercising for about half an hour. Usually it’s a combination of Pilates and stretching as I’m trying to get my splits! Finally, I dedicate some time to learning Spanish, whether it’s an exercise, a podcast, a YouTube video, or just learning a bunch of new words. I then have breakfast and start my workday!
As both entrepreneur and mother, Monica shares her busy morning routine on how she juggles being a mother to toddlers whilst running her own business, Styling Life Today.
As a busy mompreneur I need routine, schedule and organisation in my life to get through the day. That being said, every mum knows that daily life with young kids is unpredictable and never goes to plan (no matter how hard you try). To start off the day, both my little ones wake up between 6am and 7am so I am up pretty early. I get their breakfasts prepared and have them changed and fed by 8am. Whilst they eat their breakfast I check my emails and my to do list for the day, whilst sipping on my not-so-hot coffee as of course I am interrupted with a million and one requests.
From 9 to 10am they play with their toys and watch some educational shows helping them with their counting, nursery rhymes and the alphabet. During this time I answer a few quick emails and start working on my most urgent and important task for the day.
At around 10am (weather permitting of course) we head to the park and play in the playground. We have a snack at around 11am, after which I put my youngest down for a nap. My eldest toddler then plays with his toys for an hour (if I’m lucky) during which I try to finish up my morning task and tick off a few smaller items I have pending.
My to-do list is a never-ending list of tasks that range from family, personal and work items such as blog post creations, photo shoots and social media marketing. Mornings are usually the busiest as my kids are most active during this time and I like to spread out the rest of my tasks as and when I get a moment (kids-permitting!).
Travel blogger Victoria of Guide Your Travel shares her daily morning routine, wherever she is in the world!
As a digital nomad and travel blogger, my mornings are rarely the same. However, there are a few things that don’t really change no matter where in the world I currently am. I’m an early riser so I usually get up before 7:00 am. I’ll do my skincare and get dressed and drink a large glass of lemon water. I read somewhere once that you should be waking up your body gently in the mornings so my lemon water is room temperature instead of hot or cold. Then, I’ll sit at my laptop and go through emails and things I missed overnight. I’ll spend at least an hour on social media checking messages, replying to comments and just browsing. I’ll sit then down and make my to-do list for the day.
After that I’ll make myself breakfast and try to put my phone away while I eat. Depending on the weather where I am at that moment, I’ll go for a quick walk around the neighbourhood or at least go outside for a few minutes. At this point, it’s usually around 9:00 am and I’ll get started on my daily tasks. I try to get the most important ones done first because I can concentrate the best in the early morning. I’ll save the easier ones for the afternoon. I usually have a podcast playing all morning or sometimes music if I have a new playlist. Podcasts help me concentrate though and motivate me to get my day started.
Sarah Borg Barthet, editor of Dukes Avenue, shares her religiously self-indulgent mornings before dedicating the rest of her day to her readers!
Anyone who knows me well will know that I am a hard worker. On average, I work 7 days a week at all ours of the day (and sometimes nights depending on deadlines!) and if I’m not at my computer, I want to spend with my little family of four (two members being frenchies!). Because I know that I’m going to prioritise my business throughout the day, the first hour I’m awake in the day is unapologetically mine.
Unless I have an early meeting or appointment, I like to wake up naturally without the help of an alarm. Whilst not always possible, I like to let my body wake up when it’s ready to do so. Typically, this is between 7am and 730am, unless of course, my new frenchie puppy decides to wake me up at 6:30am (sadly this is her natural wake up time!).
First thing I do when I wake up is check my phone. Not the best of habits I know, but I like to check if I missed anything overnight, whether that’s an urgent message from family or friends or an email I have been waiting for. I cap this time to 10 minutes only, and then I open Wim Hof’s app for daily breathwork exercises. I could write whole articles on how this has helped me both mentally and physically, and all it takes is 15 minutes per day (but you could do more and you could do less)!
After breathwork, I follow Wim’s program and take an freezing cold shower (summer or winter!) and use the app again to time the time spent under the cold water. And just like that, I am wide awake and feel energy that I never used to feel before. I jump out of the shower and brush my teeth, using that time to think about everything that I need to do that day.
The last part of my morning routine is my skin care and I am militant about it. I believe it’s important to prioritise yourself for at least a short while during the day, and for me, that’s when doing my skin care routine. I use Vitamin C serum, hyaluronic acid serum, day cream and sun screen and spray the Davines All-in-One Hair Milk Spray on my hair before clipping it up in a bun. Once that’s all done, I head to the kitchen to make myself an iced soy vanilla latte and my day can finally start!
When not running her online business, Brisbane-based Karen is managing a busy household and feels her morning routine is what sets her up for the day. She shares it with us below.
I love my mornings. They could easily be filled with chaos as I have three kids aged 8, 11 and 11 and a puppy. I’ve made a choice to keep our mornings as calm as possible so we start the day with a positive mindset. Our morning routine begins the night before with the kids getting their clothes and books ready so we don’t have a last-minute scramble for missing socks or homework.
I generally wake up before my alarm and spend a few minutes lying in bed with my eyes closed, thinking about what an amazing day I’m going to have and visualising how easily everything is going to fall into place for me. Next comes the coffee. The day always begins with coffee! I make the kids’ packed lunches while they get their breakfast, then I eat mine as they work through their list of tasks (hair, face, teeth, sunscreen, shoes…). On the school run, we talk about the things we’re grateful for and what we’re looking forward to that day.
After I’ve dropped them off, it’s time to walk the dog. I live in Brisbane which means it’s almost always sunny, and there is nothing more uplifting than going for a walk through the trees in the sunshine while listening to an inspiring podcast. My current favourites are Denise Duffield Thomas, Jim Fortin, James Wedmore and Carrie Green. Moving in the morning is a priority for me as it gives me more energy, makes me more productive and, most importantly, it makes me happy.
When I get home, it’s time for more coffee, a few glasses of water and I review my to-do list for the day (which I plan out the night before) before I get started. I run an online business helping families move to Australia and this involves me sitting at my computer or recording video interviews all day. I try to cram a lot into the short school days, and I definitely feel like my morning routine sets me up for the day.
SEO expert, and travel blogger at Pocket Wanderings, Jessie Moore shares how she has created the perfect morning routine that works for her, despite not being a morning person!
I’ll start by saying that I have never been a morning person. I was always one of those people who snoozes the alarm for a good hour before rolling out of bed feeling incredibly groggy and not at all ready for the day ahead, but as a freelancer who runs two businesses – an SEO consultancy and a travel blog – starting the day off well is crucial to my productivity.
Throughout the pandemic, I have been working hard on establishing a morning routine that works for me. I’ve accepted that I’ll never be one of those 5am starters who does a workout, followed by a full yoga routine and an elaborate breakfast routine. Instead, I’ve created a routine that works for my needs and personality. I’ve found that the key is to make it enjoyable, so it’s something to look forward to, not to dread.
The first rule of my morning routine is to not look at my phone for at least half an hour – ideally a whole hour. Starting the day with a distraction in the form of social media is not helpful or necessary. When I get up, I make a peppermint tea and take time over a refreshing and soothing skincare routine. Rather than slapping products on my face, I take the time to massage them in and I take care to enjoy the process.
I then take just 10 minutes to ‘meditate’. I use inverted commas because I’ve adapted meditation to suit me, as I’ve always struggled with it. I literally just take 10 minutes to sit in a comfy position with a cup of tea and focus my mind. I usually can’t switch it off completely, so instead I try to observe my thoughts and not let them consume me. It’s a useful way of clearing my head before I go about my work.
We hope this article has given you some ideas on how you can curate your own productive morning routine. Whilst the contributors are based all over the world, and whilst the morning routines may vary, we all share something in common – and that’s that we all want to start our day with positivity and on the best possible note and that’s a heart-warming thought to sign off on!
For more Dukes Avenue lifestyle content, be sure to check out our Lifestyle section.
Don’t forget to pin this article if you found it helpful, and follow Dukes Avenue on Pinterest for more!