Are your days driven by the stuff you do first thing in the morning? The doom scrolls, the snoozed alarms, the lack of energising decisions? Well, we’ve hacked a few ways around them! This isn’t your classic ‘type A’ morning routine, designed for people with ample free time or a specific militant personality.
Instead, we’re looking at the most common morning pitfalls that leave you feeling zapped, and playing with ways to avoid these traps. In the end, a good day starts with a good morning routine for you - and of course, a cosy bed that brings good sleep in spades…
How to avoid: forgetting to eat
Are you a whirlwind of activity in the morning? So much so that you can’t possibly squeeze another thing - like eating breakfast - into your overcrowded routine? We get it. Similarly, if you just prefer not to eat breakfast, because it doesn’t suit your body or preference, don’t stress - we’re not here to demand you eat a nutritious meal the moment your eyes open!
In fact, recent studies have shown there’s no big difference in weight between those who love their morning meal and those who skip it, nor does eating breakfast ‘kickstart your metabolism’ like the diet myths have told us. However, research does show that those who enjoy a regular breakfast are often the ones with lower rates of heart disease, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
While skipping breakfast is not the sin modern culture has led us to believe, you should still aim to have some form of nourishing food in the first half of the day. If you’re the time-poor type, then prep things like overnight oats before going to bed, so your meal is ready to eat or take with you. If you’re not much of a morning eater, then prepping high protein snacks like nut mixes, greek yoghurt, hard boiled eggs or hummus and veggies will ensure that when you do feel hungry, you’ll be armed with food that provides energy for your body and brain.
How to avoid: getting stuck in the social media spiral
If you're reaching for your phone the second you’re awake, let’s be honest, you’re only human. The chances are, you're getting caught up in reels or TikTok or news apps for the first chunk of your morning. In doing this you’ll be starting with much less energy in the tank.
You know the feeling - tired eyes, lethargy, low motivation, sore neck from craning over your phone - these are all symptoms we experience when our bright, tiny screens are the first things we see each day. So how to get around these addictive habits?
One brilliant hack making the rounds on TikTok lately is the ‘low dopamine’ mornings. Initially coined for people with ADHD, the premise is simple: avoid your phone for the first hour in the morning. Our brains are constantly seeking dopamine hits to feel good, and like ADHD TikToker Shelby explains, “If you wake up and the first thing that you reach for is your phone, your brain becomes reliant on the dopamine hits that you receive… through notifications, text messages [and] scrolling on TikTok.”
Put simply, the first ‘rewards’ you give your brain in the morning set you up for the types of gratification you’ll end up seeking for the rest of the day. So instead, the low dopamine routine suggests doing small, ‘slow’ tasks like spending time outside, reading, stretching, or doing low stress chores like unpacking the dishwasher.
If your morning scroll is fuelled by your inability to get out of bed, you could try putting your phone on the other side of the room to force yourself out of bed. Or if that’s not your style, try replacing your instant social media habit with a meditation track or your favourite song. Pop in some headphones, let your body wake up, stretch a little, and when the track finishes, you’ll feel a little more energised to get up and dive into your day. And if you struggle to break the habit of unlocking your phone first thing, swap social media and emails for a brain teaser app like Wordle or NYT crossword to get your neurons firing.
How to avoid: overusing the snooze button
If you’re not guilty of a few snooze button offences, then you’re lying - because snoozing your alarm is one of the most natural things a human can do. No one enjoys that repetitive noise that pulls you from your sleep, but the evidence is clear: when your morning snooze becomes a long, drawn-out habit, your whole day will suffer.
The reason is because pressing the snooze button leads to fragmented sleep, disrupted sleep cycles, and oversleeping, which is what causes that groggy feeling when you do finally crawl out of bed. And that defeats the purpose of staying in bed! So what’s a sleepy human to do?
One option is to time your alarm with your natural sleep rhythms so the waking experience is less jarring on your body clock. Each sleep cycle runs at about 1.5 hours each, so if your goal is 7.5 hours sleep, set your alarm for 7.5 hours from when you go to bed, plus some padding time to allow for falling asleep.
The other thing to consider is why you feel so tired and reluctant to get up each morning - and more often than not, it’s a bad night’s sleep. If you’re sleeping well, you’ll naturally wake up feeling fresh and more alert, and the snooze button will be less tempting. Instead of falling for the trap of 8 stolen minutes of sleep, ask yourself what’s causing you to need this extra sleep.
If you’re not getting enough, then you’re better off looking at your night routine instead. Put some habits in place to get to bed earlier and enjoy adequate rest, like putting a ban on screens after 8 or 9pm, eating dinner earlier, and doing some low stress activities to unwind. If you’re a restless sleeper or struggle to fall asleep, cut out your afternoon caffeine and try reading in bed to slow and settle your brain. Sticking to a consistent sleep schedule is another great way to train your body for the sleep routine you deserve.
And finally, if your sleep is impacted by a lack of comfort, you’re already in the right place. The Natural Bedding Company’s natural mattresses, organic latex pillows & sustainable bedding like French linen sheets are all designed to bring comfort levels that’ll put you right to sleep.
Linen bedding actually gets softer and more buttery every time you wash it, while our mattress and bedding formulation avoids chemicals that cause health issues, allergies, or breathing problems. Depending on how firm or soft you like your mattress, natural materials like coir, plush latex and soft natural wool keep every body relaxed and happy - and just like that, your sleep quality is on the rise. Snooze buttons be damned!
A morning routine for everyone
It’s an impossible task to build a morning routine that every individual can thrive in, which is why it’s so hard to promise ‘the perfect one’. Instead, identify the parts of your routine that make life harder for you - poor sleep, lack of time, skipping meals, social media - and find suitable ways to mend those problems.
Whether you’re a night owl, a single parent, an early riser or a shift worker, you’ll have different routines to suit your lifestyle. The key is to know what you need in those routines to feel energised, healthy and happy, and then find gaps where they can be woven in.
Ultimately, the best morning routine is the one that leaves you feeling good - and no one knows that better than you! So go forth, assess what works, and start swapping out what doesn’t.