15 Smart, Simple (and Free!) Ways to Rejuvenate Your Mornings

updated May 25, 2019
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(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

Busy mornings suck. On top of not being able to hit the snooze button, you’re often in such a rush to get to work, you don’t have any time to mentally prep for the day ahead. Fortunately, there are plenty of easy—not to mention, free—ways to reinvigorate your morning routine and clear your mind before a crazy workday. From meditation to simply making your bed, here are 15 foolproof ways to rejuvenate your mornings.

1. Eat something nourishing

Whether it means waking up a few minutes early to make some eggs and avocado toast or just indulging in a bowl of protein-packed cereal, breakfast is the most important meal of the day for a reason. A nutritious breakfast won’t just jumpstart your metabolism for the day—it will improve your memory and focus, too.

2. Do yoga

Turns out that a few minutes of yoga in the morning can do a whole lot more then just stretch out your muscles. Along with reducing stress levels and boosting your mood, a 10-minute morning stretch session has the power to lower your blood sugar levels (so you’re less likely to get an afternoon headache) and help you stay focused throughout the day.

3. Give yourself a power facial

Funny how something as simple as a quick face mask in the morning can keep you amped throughout the day. Before you jump in the shower or wash your face, throw on a nice DIY or sheet mask to hydrate your skin and at least make it look like you got a good night’s sleep.

(Image credit: Jessica Isaac)

4. Read for 10 minutes

Whether it’s scanning the local newspaper or reading a chapter of a bestselling true crime book, research suggests that 10 minutes of reading in the morning can stimulate your brain and enhance attention levels for the day. No wonder some of the most successful people in the world take the time to read every morning.

5. Make your bed

Believe it or not, making your bed in the morning can do way more for your day then give you a tidier room to come home to. On top of setting a productive tone for the day, experts say making your bed in the a.m. can also lower stress levels and put you in a positive mood.

(Image credit: Emily Billings)

6. Play music while you get ready

Few things can energize your morning like listening to a solid playlist of your favorite songs. Whether it’s Beethoven (to boost your brain cells) or Britney Spears, listening to music while you get ready in the morning is a fun way to get pumped for the day.

7. Text your loved ones

Funny how something as simple as texting your friends “good morning” can begin your day in a positive way. Instead of mindless scrolling through your social media feed when you first wake up, why not send out an encouraging group text to your BFFs and start everyone’s day with a smile.

8. Meditate

It’s no secret that work can get super stressful. That’s why health experts have long advocated meditation in the morning to clear your brain (and ease anxiety) before you head to the office. Do yourself a favor and practice meditating for just 5-10 minutes in the morning, and you’ll lower your stress levels and chances of getting a headache.

(Image credit: Hannah Puechmarin)

9. Wake up 15 minutes early for some “me time”

A little “me time” can go a long way in the morning. If you constantly find yourself feeling overwhelmed and rushed in the morning, try waking up 10-15 minutes earlier every day to score some down time. Whether it gives you extra time to do your hair or drink your coffee, a few moments to yourself in the morning will help keep you calm for the rest of the day.

10. Eat breakfast outside

Why eat your breakfast indoors when you can dine outside in the sunshine? Instead of rushing through your morning muffin, take a step outdoors and enjoy your breakfast al fresco style. The fresh air will help wake you up by invigorating your senses, and the sunlight will instantly lift your mood by lowering your serotonin levels.

11. Take the scenic route to work

Even if it means walking or a longer commute, taking the scenic route to work will help keep you calm before a chaotic day by giving you something pretty to focus on for a few.

(Image credit: Photographed by Susie Lowe, Designed by The Pink House)

12. Listen to a podcast

Whether you play one while you’re getting ready in the bathroom or in your car on your drive to work, listening to a podcast is a great way to unwind and de-stress in the a.m. while scoring some creative inspo.

13. Exercise

It might seem like a no-brainer, but exercising in the morning will do more than just slim your waistline. Studies show that in addition to lowering both your stress levels and blood pressure, starting your day with a good 10-minute sweat will actually help you sleep better at night.

14. Spread some love

Whether it means a quick call to mom, snuggling with your pets, or simply watering (and of course, talking to) your plants, research suggests that starting your day with love and kindness will lift your spirits and help you stay upbeat throughout the day.

15. Make a fun and nutritious lunch

The only thing better than a well-balanced breakfast to start your day is having a delicious (and nutritious) lunch to look forward to. Make a point to pack yourself a healthy lunch in the morning and you’ll stay energized (and satisfied) throughout your entire workday.