For most of us, mornings are hectic times where we rush to work. Sometimes we realise we've forgot something at home, and making a quick decision on whether to double back or to go on through the day without it. Some of us skip breakfast, while others drive really fast to get to the office on time.
What if I told you, that life doesn’t always have to be lived in the fast lane? That you can be calm and relaxed in the morning. It’s important to keep your stress levels low when your body has just woken up, rather than rush around trying to fit everything in. For a healthier and happier you, here is your guide on how to save time in the morning.
The night before
It all starts the night before. The little time that you invest then, can go a long way when you’re struggling to get out of bed in the morning. Planning is key.
1. Lay your clothes out
This ‘school days’ hack is probably one of the most useful time savers. Decide what you will wear the night before and lay it out carefully. You should even put out the socks, shoes and bag, so that everything is right there in front of you. In the long run, it would be very beneficial to have 5 go to outfits that you alternate every week. Decide on your very own uniform that you regularly wear and watch your morning routine take significantly less time.
2. Put pen to paper
Before going to bed, if you identify your top 6 most vital things to do the next day ranked from order of most important to least important, you can wake up with a clear mind that will be ready to tackle the day. Taking note of what you need to do the night before will eliminate any moments of panic in the morning and will keep you calm and thinking clearly while you get ready.
3. Meal prep
Both breakfast and lunch, are best to plan the night ahead. Make sure you have sealable tupper wear and either use your left over dinner for lunch or make anything quick and easy ahead of time. As for breakfast, if you prefer fresh bites in the morning, then decide what you want to be eating, so you don’t spend your precious time in a medley of opening and closing the fridge. If it’s French toast, then soak the toast in the egg wash over night, if you’re going to be having a sandwich, place all your ingredients front and centre in the fridge. Half the battle is deciding what you want to eat. The rest should be a no brainer.
4. Sleep time
According to a study done by North Western University, the healthiest people are the ones that go to sleep around the same time every night. Training your body to go to sleep at the same time every night might be a challenge at first, but doing so will adjust your biological clock, which will help instil a sense of routine in your life. Sleeping at a similar time every night will make you less tired when you wake up, thus less likely to roll over and sleep some more.
In the morning
Part of saving time in the morning comes from planning, but the other part comes from mental strength. Use the mind over matter mantra to get yourself moving and out of the door.
5. You snooze, you lose
Hitting the snooze button is very very bad. If you wake up and decide to close your eyes for those extra 5 minutes, you are doing yourself the biggest disfavour. Basically 2 hours before you wake up, your body starts to warm your core temperature up, so you feel less sleepy and more alert. When you snooze and go back to sleep, your body then thinks waking up was a false alarm and gets back into sleeping mode. 5 minutes later, the alarm rings and your body is jolted awake. This is not only confusing for your brain, but the second time around you are more groggy and sleepy. 5 minute snoozes are the enemy. Set your alarm for the time you have to wake up and actually get up then.
6. Teach yourself low maintenance
Make your showers quick and efficient. You don’t actually need longer than 5 minutes to wash your body and your hair. After the shower, let your hair air dry for as long as possible, this saves on the blow drying time. If you’re a woman, cut down on your make up routine by wearing just the basics and use your morning commute (if you are not driving) to do any finishing touches.
7. Leave yourself a note
Write down the important things you need to take with you on a post it note, which you put up somewhere you know you won’t miss. Before you leave the house, look at your note and check that you have your wallet, gym bag, water bottle, lap top, keys etc. Sooner or later, you’ll learn to have one area in your house, where you always have your essentials in one place. This will save you time and you'll never have to run back home to grab that one thing you left behind.
8. Catch up on the news
Make sure you scroll through your Twitter, log on to Gulfnews.com to catch up on all the latest news before you start your day.