(BPT) - Upgrading your morning routine can pay dividends throughout the day by helping you remain focused and energized. Before life takes you in a million directions, optimize your start to the day by incorporating these simple steps to slow down and savor:
1. Pause before you power on
Is your tablet or mobile device calling your name before you even step out of bed in the morning? Studies have shown that one in five people check email as soon as he or she wakes up. Realistically, not much is going to get accomplished before breakfast anyway, so prolong your peaceful state of mind and try to stay unplugged until after you have your first meal of the day.
2. Rethink your breakfast experience
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3. Wake up and smell the coffee
Ninety percent of North American adults report using caffeine every day. Studies suggest that small doses of caffeine - whether a warm cup of tea or half cup of coffee - help you think more clearly and feel calm, enhancing mental performance.
4. Start your day one step ahead
Avoid a hectic morning by tackling some of those routine morning to-dos the night before. Get a jump on the day by setting aside a few minutes each evening to pack lunches, pick out outfits and cross-check your calendar. This is a simple way to gain extra time so you can enjoy a calmer beginning to your day.
5. Take a seat
When people feel rushed, they tend to eat standing up. According to The Cleveland Clinic, eating while stressed can actually increase negative feelings and lessen the enjoyment of eating. Take a moment to sit down and savor your warm breakfast while you watch the morning news, read the paper or just listen to the birds sing. This small step can instill a sense of calm the rest of your day.