7 Habits for a Productive Morning Routine

Although many of us want to make the most of our days, and earnestly set out to get as many things accomplished as we can, it doesn’t always to turn out the way we want it to.

One thing or another happens; we wake up late, someone calls us last-minute, we get distracted, or we just don’t feel like it and the day flies right by us.

Whatever the reason for our unproductiveness, we are well aware that making the most of our days are important in order to accomplish our goals.

What some may not realize is that what you do in the morning, sets the tone for how the rest of your day will play out.

Yes, you can have a productive afternoon or evening every now and then, but when you make the most of your morning you have a more productive day overall.

Establishing a productive daily morning routine ensures that we seize our days.

Laying out a step by step plan for the morning that motivates us can have so many benefits from aiding in accomplishing our goals, completing important tasks and simply making sure that we don’t waste our days away.

Today I’m sharing with you guys a list I created of the habits that I have incorporated into my daily morning routine and that have in general made for more productive days in my life.

***

1. Wake up Early.

Although waking up early can be SO hard for some of us, it is honestly so important. Waking up early allows you to make the most of your day. You give yourself enough time to mentally prepare for the day ahead and also eat breakfast (BTW it goes without saying that “breakfast is the most important meal of the day”, and we should try our best not to skip it) which should motive you to kick-start your day and get what you need to get done, done.

2. Disconnect.

Especially in the morning but also throughout the day. Disconnecting has so many benefits. Checking your phone when you first wake up distracts you from getting up and going. We spend 10 minutes, 15 minutes, an hour looking through Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, you name it and not only do we get behind schedule but we let our minds get bombarded with who’s doing what and comparison from the onset of the day. (BTW I totally struggle with this, Instagram is my weakness, so I feel you). It’s also good to disconnect throughout the day when we’re working on important tasks so that we can give our full attention to what we’re doing. For example, I find that when I disconnect while working on content for my blog, I get more done, and my creative juices flow better.

3. Drink Water.

I have recently gotten into doing this simply because I’ve heard over and over through other bloggers that drinking water when you wake up is beneficial. Drinking water in the morning helps boost your metabolism, hydrates your sleepy body, helps your skin and gets your brain active.

4. Read/Stimulate your mind.

This could range from looking over your To-Do list (which you should definitely have because it keeps you organized and helps you see that you get your stuff done), actually reading a book, or catching up on the news. If you’re going to be up and looking at something spend the time on something that will benefit you cognitively, keeping you informed, inspired or both.

5. Workout.

Now, I know I talked about this in my last post, but I can’t reiterate enough the benefits of working out, no matter what your stance is on having a healthy lifestyle. Like I mentioned in my previous postworking out helps clear your mind, reduces stress and energizes your body leading to a more productive you and in turn a more productive day for you. Working out in the morning will definitely help set a good tone for your day, what better than a stress-free, energized, you?

6. Dress like a Boss.

I have also written about this in a past post, but dressing up is good when you do it for the right reasons. I’m not saying you should dress up like a boss in order to impress other people or because you think it’ll gain you some sort of attention but I am saying to do it for YOU. Dressing up because you feel good in your body and you like what you’re wearing totally builds your confidence and motivates you in your day as well.

7. Kick Ass.

Literally, give your best in everything that you do. Do it because you love what you do, do it because giving your best gains you the most benefits, and do it because if we’re truly honest with ourselves we appreciate and value things more when people give their best and we should reflect the values we honor.

***

Having a productive morning routine is so important to having a productive day.

When we just let things happen, the distractions, the laziness, whatever it may be, we don’t make the most of our days and the potential for achieving more and acquiring our goals isn’t fully exercised.

I challenge you today to take some time and think about your mornings. Do you need to establish a morning routine? Do you need to modify the one you already have?

Whatever you decide to do, consider making the most of your mornings so that you can have the most productive day.

Xoxo,

Mara

p.s. Let me know in the comment section what are things that you do in the mornings that help you have a productive day. I’d love to hear from you guys!

5 Ways to Love Yourself

Loving yourself is hard in a world that constantly has a full display for us to take in on what “perfection” is, how amazing it supposedly is and what we need to do to replicate it.

Whether it’s on TV, in magazines, or through social media, we continuously take in this picture.

Unfortunately many of us, myself included, waste our time trying to make our lives live up to it.

If only we could buy the right set of clothes, talk the right people, try specific activities, we think we’ll actually have that perfect life in which we’re happy and others will love us. We legitimately pursue those things.

We compare ourselves and open up to becoming frustrated and upset when we can’t emulate the picture of perfection.

Perfection isn’t possible.

Everyone in one way or another has their flaws, and we are simply handed the edited version of their lives through the different portals I mentioned before.

Disengaging from something that consumes our everyday life is hard, but saying no to comparison and getting rid of that picture of perfection allows us to find inner peace and satisfaction in our own lives.

We should make the conscious effort to forget about the all the things that try to grab our attention and take the time to figure out what we love/what makes us happy, simply because it makes us happy, and pursue it.

Create your own, unique, picture of perfection. Flaws and all.

These are some of the ways that I have learned to love myself, hopefully, some of them will resonate with you:

1. Going to Therapy.

I used to think that going to therapy was for people with very intense problems. Like somehow my problems could not possibly compare to someone that has lost someone or has gotten divorced or has contemplated suicide etc.  But then I lost someone and more than a year later I decided to actually go therapy. Taking that step helped me realize something. Going to therapy is more than just about having some very intense problem you need to have assessed. It’s about confiding in someone all of the things that go on in your mind and working on making sense of our lives. It’s definitely hard but very much productive. My therapist helps me to understand how past events have affected me in order to continue down a journey of emotional healing.

2. Creating a Workout Routine.

Whether you’re already fit or you don’t really care too much about having a healthy lifestyle working out seriously has so many benefits. Personally, it motivates me to be productive, it helps clear my mind and it reduces my stress level. Yes, it has been hard sometimes to keep the consistency when there are days I’m overcome with tiredness, but working out has become a part of me now. I feel weird when I don’t do it and when I finally do it and I experience the benefits I question why I didn’t just push through.

3. Disconnecting from Technology.

I cannot stress this one enough. Honestly, I crave doing this more than I get the chance to. When I disconnect I feel refreshed/rejuvenated. There’s something about putting your phone far away where you can’t see it (I like to leave it in my bedroom and go to the kitchen or living room) and spend time writing, watching a movie, reading a book; doing anything other than waiting for texts and opening my social media accounts every five minutes.

4. Spending time doing things you love.

Although I started this blog last year, (my one year anniversary was last week🎉🎉) it wasn’t until the end of last year that I really started to actively write on here. At first, I was really nervous because I’d be sharing my thoughts with the world and I didn’t know how it would fare. But, I knew it was something that I wanted to do so I mustered the courage and did it. It has been incredibly liberating and personally rewarding and I encourage you to do whatever it is you like to do. Whether it’s writing, singing, painting, exercising; anything. Even if you’ve never tried it before, do it. Get lost in it and see where it takes you.

5. Being honest about what you think and feel.

Some of you might not relate, but if you’re anything like me, you have gotten caught up in caring so much about what other people think that you deny yourself in order to keep them happy. Honestly, it benefits no one. Sure people might get upset and it may be really hard to muster up the courage but in the long run, you will not only gain respect (even if it’s your own) but you will live a less stressful life. Keep in mind that people that care about you will consider your thoughts and feelings, not shame you or manipulate you with them.

***

You are such a beautiful, amazing, and capable person no matter how different your life may look from the picture the world shows us.

I challenge you today to forget about looking like x person or trying to do x things because that’s what this person does, and try things that actually interest you and truly make you happy.

Whether you choose some of the things from my list or you take the time to come up with your own, love yourself by doing things that are good for you and make you happy.

Love yourself, love yourself hard because honestly you deserve it, and the world could use your talented, amazing, and unique self.

Xoxo,

Mara

 

 

3 Lessons Facing Fear Has Taught Me

Facing fear isn’t the easiest thing to do.

It has never been and frankly if you truly fear something, it never will be.

Fear is like an enemy in battle; it camps out in our minds and constantly bombards us with self-deprecating thoughts, pictures of horrible scenarios, anything really that torments us, in order to keep us from fully exercising our potential and living our life to the fullest.

It has taken some time for me to figure this little game out, but once I did I began to fight from my side of the battle.

These are the three important lessons I learned once I entered the battlefield against my fears:

1. I am capable.

Fear has a funny way of debilitating you, making you think that you can’t possibly do the thing that freaks you out the most. So, you hold back, because you “can’t”, or it’s “not possible”. Truth? That is such a lie. As cliche as it may sound, there really is nothing you can’t do, if you set your mind to it. Sure you might not instantaneously get the result that you wanted but you most definitely are capable of doing whatever you want to do.

2. Things don’t normally turn out as bad as you think they will.

I used to do this thing, (I still do sometimes, I’m a work in progress), where I would create scenarios in mind, really bad ones, of what would happen if I did the thing that I was afraid of doing. No lies, people would laugh at my insecurities, I would cry in front of my “enemy”, anything vaguely humiliating you can think of, I envisioned it. Turns out, things like that, although possible, don’t happen as often as our mind tries to trick us into believing they would. The normal person isn’t the spawn of satan and has many of their own insecurities to focus on exposing and tearing you down for yours. And if they are? I can take care of it like the strong woman that I am.

3. There is so much more to life than I could have ever imagined.

When you let fear overpower you, you literally live life inside of a box of all the things you are comfortable with. You never truly experience life. However, when you take the initiative and try to overcome your fears your eyes are opened to things you never thought were possible. You experience new sensations, new real life scenarios that show you just how amazing life can be and just how much you can miss out on. I now know what it is to talk to strangers without always feeling the need to control a panic attack or to have a break down if things don’t go the way I thought they would. And guess what? I’m alive and breathing and I’ve made some great friendships and memories as a result.

***

Raging war against fear is hard.

Some days fear totally has the upper hand; exhausting thoughts, panic attacks, and buckets of sweat galore.

However, the war is not over.

At least, it will never be over unless we give up.

I’ve become addicted to the feeling that facing my fears and succeeding gives me. I’m in love with the heights I’ve reached, the new faces I’ve met and the new me that has been formed as a result.

I wouldn’t take it back for the world.

My question for you is, are YOU willing to rage your own war against fear?

Xoxo,

Mara

4 Steps to Your Fearless Life

For a really long time, I lived a life that was far from the one that I wanted.

I allowed the fear of what other people would think of me, what they would say about me or to me, to hold me back from trying new things, speaking up, and being my true self. 

I eventually became fed up.

Fed up with the direction, or more so the lack of it, my life was taking.

I decided that I needed to do the things that I truly wanted Now

I wasted so much time living a life that I wasn’t happy with for people who didn’t know me or truly care about me.

It was time to start living for me.

Truthfully? I have found so much satisfaction and direction as a result.

I use the word fearless because I honestly believe fear is one of the main reasons we aren’t living the lives we were meant to be living. We are afraid of people, we’re afraid of ourselves, we’re afraid of so many things, that we hold back. Our potential stays on reserve; we never fully exert it.

If we can learn to fight our fear we can head towards the life that each of us truly want and are more than capable of attaining.

I believe that so many people could benefit from taking the initiative and that is why I would love to share what that process looked like for me in four simple steps.

This is not to say that my life is perfect and I’m never overcome by fear because it’s not. Fear creeps it’s face everyday into my life, and I have to choose everyday to fight it head on.

So, if you are looking to transition into the fearless and fulfilling life you want, this how you can do it:

1. Decide.

Decide that you have had enough. Enough with not being happy, enough with letting outside factors determine how you live your life, enough with wasting time not living the life YOU want.

2. Reflect.

Reflect on the life you want. It’s easy to simply think or say, “this isn’t the life I want”. However, it’s hard to establish how the life you truly want would look like. So think, and then write. Ask yourself what kind of life you want. Do you want to eat healthy and take care of your body? Do you want to go deeper into your spiritual life or create one if you’ve never had one? Do you want to incorporate things in your life that you really love? What are those things?

3. Create.

Create an action plan for how you are going to attain the life you have wanted. If you want to live healthier, how are you going to do it? When are you going to work out? Are you going to join a gym? If so, which one? If you want to go deeper in your spiritual life, what practices are you going to implement in your daily life that will allow you to do so? Create a detailed action plan for attaining each of the things that will help establish that life you’ve wanted. 

4. Implement.

Implement what you have detailed in your action plan into your daily life. Go. Take action. If you decided to go to the gym Monday, Wednesday, Friday, go, don’t miss a day. If you’ve decided to eat healthy go food shopping, create your healthy meals. The thing is to go do it. Do it even if you don’t feel like it, even if you’re tired. Do it no matter what.

****

Transitioning into the life you want isn’t something that is easy, but it is most definitely something that is worth it. You have to commit daily to it. That is, even when it’s hard, when you don’t feel like working out, or you don’t feel like setting the hour apart to do your homework or work on a project, you do it anyways.

The struggle of the moment is so overwhelming. It might feel like the hardest thing ever. However, when you push through it, you will feel so much better once you have completed the task. Not only that, but it develops your endurance. Persist a couple of times and persisting will become second nature.

The life you’ve always wanted is there. It has always been there, waiting for you to pick it up. So, put your fears aside. Forget about all the things that hold you back, whether it’s people, past failures, or self-deprecating thoughts and full-heartedly devote yourself to living the life you’ve always wanted.

Commit to the work, the pain, the ups and downs, and most importantly the satisfying results that will eventually come.

You got this!

Xoxo,

Mara