This post was updated on May 24, 2023
While there are dozens of positive habits you can implement in the morning, focusing on just these 7 habits is incredibly beneficial. Even just implementing one of these in your morning ritual can have positive ripples in all areas of your day.
You don’t have to wake up at 4 a.m. to reap the benefits of a morning ritual. In fact, just 20-30 minutes of extra time in the morning is more than enough to build at least a handful of powerful habits that will have a tremendous impact on your life.
1. Make your bed
Out of all the keystone habits to implement in the morning, this is one of our favorites. While it sounds silly on the surface, there’s a direct correlation between your mood and whether or not you’ve made your bed.
This is just one of those simple tweaks that can put you in a good mood to start the day and gives you a quick win for your morning routine.
2. Drink a glass of water
Another simple but often overlooked habit is to drink a glass of water as soon as you wake up. While you sleep, your body releases a disgusting amount of sweat so you wake up a bit dehydrated. One of the major benefits of having a glass of water next to your bed is that it makes it super easy to replenish your system and refresh those organs right away – especially if you’re prone to drinking boatloads of coffee in the morning.
3. Read a chapter of your favorite book each morning
It’s a common mistake to think that in order to get the ‘benefits’ of reading you have to block off 30-45 minutes or it’s not worth it. That couldn’t be further from the truth.
Commit to reading (or listening to) one chapter each morning. The most important part is getting into the habit of reading, and over the course of a few weeks or months, this adds up to one or two books you may otherwise not have read.
4. Stretch and/or exercise
Depending on how much time you have in the morning, getting your exercise in for the day is a great use of your time. Not only will you feel better from the endorphins released from exercise, but you’ll also have a “great” day no matter what else happens.
If you don’t have enough time to get a full workout in, at the very least aim to do some light stretching for 5-10 minutes. Over time you’ll be much more flexible and your body will be in great shape to tackle the day.
5. Plan your Most Important Tasks (MITs)
If you’ve followed our secrets for getting the most from your morning routine and planned your night before, this involves reviewing the MITs you’ve set out the night before. If not, take a few minutes and write down the 2-3 goals that you want to accomplish for the day. Think of these as actions that if done, would make your day “productive.” It’s amazing how much you can get done if you have the right focus.
6. Mediate or pray
While the many benefits of meditation have been shouted from the rooftops for the last few years, it really can help you have a much more focused and productive day. Again, the point isn’t to meditate for 90 minutes and do nothing else. In fact, just 5 minutes of focused meditation, breathing, or prayer can prime you to have a great day.
7. Write a page in your journal
Another favorite keystone habit we love doing in the morning is what’s known as the “morning pages” or “brain dump” popularized by the best-selling book – The Artist’s Way.
Essentially, you take 10-15 minutes and write whatever’s on your mind. You can do this by hand or in blog format. The goal is to dump everything in your head that’s taking up mental space so you have a clear mind heading into the day. Write whatever comes to your mind and don’t worry about it being perfect.
Just adding one or two of these keystone habits into your morning can have a profound impact on your morning ritual.
Don’t try to add all of these into your morning routine right away. Start slow and start adding one or two to your ritual once you’ve successfully completed the ones before, and feel free to share our tips with your friends and family.