10 Ways to Make Self-Care a Part of Your Morning Routine

When most women think of self-care, they normally assume that it implies slicing out a bit of time for something decadent like a bubble bath or mani/pedi appointment. But the act of self-care really just requires a mindful interval for pause, a way to put everything else aside and give priority to your intentions. There is nothing more nourishing than implementing a self-care routine first thing in the morning to set your day off right and keep you centered no matter what challenges arise. And while no one's self-care routine will be the same as anyone else's, these 10 tips could put you on the path to a fulfilling day.

  1. Don't rush. It may seem impossible at first to wake up an hour earlier than you normally do, but it's well worth the trouble. Having the luxury to get up and ready for the day at a leisurely pace has calming benefits that resonate throughout the day.
  2. Avoid your phone. This one is bound to be a struggle, but allowing yourself a morning without the mindless scrolling through Facebook and Instagram will help keep the focus where it should be: on you.
  3. Have a morning drink ritual. Some people relish their morning cup of joe while others swear by their daily kale smoothie. Having a drink ritual is a quick way to center yourself and allows for some additional time to fully wake up.
  4. Meditate. If you're not sure where to start, try headspace for guided meditation sessions that only last a few minutes each. Having even a couple of minutes to cultivate your awareness and compassion through meditation can have profound effects on your psyche.
  5. Move your body. This doesn't have to include a grueling, sweaty workout. If you only have a few minutes to spare, either stretch, foam roll, or do some sun salutation yoga poses to activate your body.
  6. Start your morning with nature. Step outside for five minutes no matter what the temperature is. You can even have your morning coffee outside! If you can spare the 10 extra minutes, go for a brisk walk around the block whether rain or shine.
  7. Set your day's intention. This one only takes a minute to do, but is an impactful daily ritual. Mindfully setting an intention for yourself with something as simple as "today I will have a productive day and won't stress over the things that I can't control" can change the entire course of your day.
  8. Moisturize. There's nothing better than a quick massage session every morning as you lather on your favorite lotion or oil. If you do it mindfully, it's not just great for your skin but for your mental state of being as well.
  9. Write in a gratitude journal. Probably not many people have the time to write an essay in the morning, but a daily habit of jotting down one to two sentences daily can be a useful way to cultivate gratitude first thing every day.
  10. Take your vitamins. Self-care is all about taking care of mental/physical and spiritual self. Taking your daily vitamins habitually is a small but very potent action you can undertake every day as a gentle reminder that you are prioritizing your health.