This post was written by MakeSpace, a full-service NYC storage company (also serving Chicago, Los Angeles, and Washington, DC) that picks up, stores, and delivers your stuff so you never have to visit a self-storage unit again.
Mornings are not for the faint of heart. If you’ve got hours upon hours to leisurely ease your way into each day, you can lounge around with a third cup of coffee or concoct a five-course breakfast.
For the rest of us, mornings are filled with blaring alarm clocks, half-brushed hair, and missing shoes. You were supposed to leave five minutes ago, but you’re not even sure how late you are because you can’t find your phone in the abyss that is your briefcase.
It doesn’t have to be like this.
With the help of a few exceptional morning organization tips, your morning will be smooth sailing and you’ll feel in charge of the rest of the day.
Follow these 10 tips from MakeSpace, a convenient solution to self-storage that will pick up, store, and deliver your things back. You can find your other shoe later.
1. Don’t hit snooze
The snooze button is a bad news button when it comes to feeling awake first thing in the morning.
When your alarm goes off for the first time, you’re given a little jolt, courtesy of adrenaline and cortisol. This response makes you feel immediately alert. If you choose to ignore it and wait an extra 5-10 minutes, your body will have a harder time snapping to attention the second time around. As a result, you’ll feel groggy and disoriented rather than bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.
If you’re not typically ready to wake up when your first alarm goes off, set it for ten minutes later (aka the time you snooze to). You’ll give yourself the sleep you need without interruptions, and you’ll be prepared to take on the day from the get-go.
2. Skip the screen
Moving straight from sleep to smartphone screen immediately introduces stress into your day. Avoid unnecessary anxiety over emails and deadlines and allow yourself to enjoy your morning screen-free. Separate your home life from your work responsibilities and take this time to breathe.
If you absolutely must to check your emails before you start your work day, wait to respond until you’ve gotten other parts of your morning accomplished first. Your brain still needs time to wake up and formulate an appropriate response. A problem that entered your inbox after you shut down the night before is not going to be solved at 6:30 am, and we wouldn’t recommend trying.
3. Take time to meditate
Avoid dragging yourself out of your bed and immediately falling into your morning routine. Instead, channel your first-alarm awakeness into 10-20-minute centered meditation.
You’ll kick start your morning relaxed, aware, and prepared for the day. You can take the time to express gratitude for your life or just let the important things that need to be done quietly come to you. This is your time to focus entirely on yourself, so relish in the self-serving silence.
4. Schedule an early-morning sweat sesh
Signing up (and paying) for a class will hold you accountable for showing up. If you trust that you’ll commit to it without financial incentive, incorporating a free muscle-moving activity (running, walking, yoga) into your morning routine will help you reap all-day benefits. You’ll energize your muscles, jump start your metabolism, and give your brain a boost before you even step foot in an office. Plus, you’ve gotten it out of the way to make time for fun activities later!
5. Crank up the tunes
Flying by the seat of your pants works well for parasailers. It shouldn’t be the way you head into each day. Review your schedule for the day and create a list of to-do’s that you’d like to accomplish. Establishing a set of goals first thing will make it easier to refocus throughout the day should you get off track, and it will help you determine how to best use your time around any appointments, meetings, or extracurriculars.
7. Lighten your load
Carrying around three books, a magazine, a full-sized bottle of perfume, a bag of crushed crackers, 20 receipts, and two empty travel coffee mugs is a wee bit excessive. Paring down the contents of your bag to just the essentials will help you avoid wasting time digging for the important items.
Remove unnecessary items from your handbag or briefcase. Finding your keys is remarkably easier when you don’t have to hunt for them beneath layers of gum wrappers and missing hair ties.
8. Plan tomorrow’s outfit
Few people have time to sit down to (much less make) a balanced breakfast every morning. It might be tempting to reach for a prepackaged granola bar and let that suffice, but a wholesome breakfast is still easy to enjoy while you head out the door.
At the beginning of the week, make a big batch of your favorite on-the-go eats. Smoothies, breakfast burritos, and baked oatmeal are all a cinch to assemble in bulk and refrigerate or freeze. In the morning, simply pop them in the microwave for a few minutes and enjoy as you commute.
10. Give yourself something to look forward to
Have something enjoyable planned for after work. Whether it’s dinner with a friend, going shopping, or coming home to read a few more chapters of your new book, it’s important to give yourself something fun to anticipate. You’ll feel more motivated throughout the day knowing you’ve promised yourself a fun activity when you get home.