You fall into bed way too late again with a heavy feeling in your stomach. You just couldn’t close your laptop or switch off the tv, and tomorrow morning (and for the rest of the day) you will pay. Break the cycle of harried, miserable morning by setting your mind to it “ all it takes is a little planning and discipline starting way before you wake up. Here’s how to do it:
Your new nighttime routine
¢ Take some time to organize yourself now “ lay out (or at least mentally plan) tomorrow’s outfit, have your breakfast and lunch prepared, gym bag packed and cell phone charged. And if you’re switching purses, do it now to avoid leaving your wallet or keys behind in the last-minute shuffle (c’mon, we know you’ve done it). These small preps take no time at night and will make all the difference in the morning.
¢ Choose a bedtime and stick to it, then, for two hours before that, begin to unwind. Avoid working out within three hours of bedtime because although exercise produces endorphins which make you feel good, it also energizes your body when it should be calming down.
¢ Take a bath or a warm shower before bed to relax and save time in the morning. Use a luxurious body wash or lotion scented with sleep-inducing lavender (as opposed to energizing citrus or peppermint, which should be saved for morning). A few drops of lavender oil on a tissue tucked inside your pillowcase or rubbed on your temples can also ease you into sweet slumber.
¢ Turn off the tv and all lights. Studies on insomnia and sleep apnea have shown that stimulation from television and bright lights can worsen symptoms. A completely dark, cool room is optimal for quality sleep.
Your new morning routine
¢ Wake up with your alarm. Studies have shown that hitting the snooze button can make you drowsier than rising when it first goes off.
¢ Use the time you would have spent snoozing to wake your body with some gentle stretches: lying on your back, try an easy spinal twist, hamstring stretch and hug your knees into your chest to massage the lower back.
¢ Give yourself even the smallest indulgence by using a favourite soap or perfume.
¢ There is no way around it: breakfast will make you feel happier, smarter and more energized than going without. Aim for balance with whole-grain toast spread with almond butter for healthy fat and protein, a glass of rice milk and a piece of fruit