When you work from home it can be tempting to sleep in and get a slow, mellow start to your morning. Most of us, however, also like the idea of day-long productivity, and the best way to meet your goals is to start your morning right. If you do that, the rest of your day will flow much more smoothly.
Here are 20 things you can do first thing in the morning to help you stay productive for the rest of your day.
1. Lose the snooze
Once your alarm goes off, get right up. Drifting off to sleep for a couple more minutes serves no purpose since you won’t be getting any deep, restorative sleep. If you’re waking up groggy, set your alarm a bit later or go to bed earlier.
2. Stretch it out
It’s important to stretch your muscles first thing in the morning, especially if you sit at a desk for long amounts of time. This will improve your circulation and posture. Here are some stretches to try.
3. Breathe deeply
Taking a few deep breaths is a great way to clear your head, ease stress, and improve your heart health.
4. Do some push-ups
You don’t have to fit in a whole workout session; just doing a series of pushups, crunches or heel raises will get your blood flowing and sharpen your mind for the day ahead.
5. Get clean
The sooner you get your morning shower out of the way, the better. Not only will you clean off any sweat or toxins you released during the night, but you’ll also be in more of a work mindset once you’re clean and dressed.
As tempting as it is to begin guzzling coffee right away, it’s actually better to start your day with water. After all, your body will be a bit dehydrated after a full night’s sleep. Aim for about two cups.
7. Make your bed
It just takes a couple of minutes, makes your room look neater and sets you up for continued good habits throughout the day.
If you haven’t seen this video before, I highly recommend watching it. It’s super inspiring and talks about why you should make your bed in the morning.
8. Eat breakfast
Eating breakfast is loaded with benefits you will reap throughout your day. It will help fuel your body for your morning’s work, boost your metabolism and improve your concentration and job performance. It really is the most important meal of the day.
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9. Make a to-do list
Making a list of your projects and must-dos for the day can help you prioritize your schedule and keep you on track. It’s also satisfying to cross things off your list as you accomplish them; you can see in black and white all you are getting done.
10. Tackle a little mess
Don’t embark on a major cleaning project, but tidy up your desk, unload the dishwasher or fold a load of laundry. It will give you a sense of accomplishment and make the day easier down the road.
11. Do the worst first
Dreading a certain task all day long can be draining. Get it out of the way first thing and your day will be much less stressful.
12. Color your world
Bright colors can stimulate the brain and get you energized. Enjoy a favorite painting, use a flashy toothbrush, and accessorize your home office with some brightly colored decor.
13. Watch something inspiring
Cue the YouTube kitten videos. Briefly watching something you enjoy can be inspiring and boost your creativity.
14. Check your email
See what messages came through the night before, and then don’t check again until lunch. Constant email-checking is a time-waster.
15. One thing at a time
Don’t multitask. Focus on doing one thing at a time and doing it well.
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16. Be cool
Make sure the temperature in your workspace is cool and comfortable. If it’s too warm, you may feel groggy and sluggish.
17. Sit up straight
When you finally sit down at your computer, make sure you don’t slouch. If this is a problem for you, try placing a pillow in the small of your back to keep your lower back from rounding.
18. Set your phone aside
Place it in another room to keep from constantly checking for text messages, Facebook or Twitter. Vow to reward yourself with a game of Candy Crush during lunch.
19. Step outside
Getting some fresh air and sunshine is a great way to start your day and revive your senses. Being outdoors is energizing.
20. Listen to music
Put on whatever tunes make you feel good, perhaps while you’re getting dressed or enjoying breakfast. Listening to great music can set the mood for your whole day.
Try some or all of these tips to get your day started right and you’ll make the most of your workday. You’ll be glad you did when you see your productivity and your outlook improve.
What tips do you have for staying productive all day long? Drop us a note; we’d love to hear from you! If you enjoyed this post — please share it on your favorite social media site.
Katie Elizabeth is a work-at-home woman and blogger. She likes to get her morning started by making a to-do list and eating a healthy breakfast. Follow her on Twitter @KatieGElizabeth to read all of her latest work-at-home woman posts!