Not a morning person? These 5 tips can help set the stage for a great day.

Whether you're a night person or a morning person, certain things will give you an extra spark to begin your day. Even if it means setting the alarm clock a bit earlier, you'll see the benefits throughout your day and week.

What is your first thought when you wake up? Do you set a physical alarm, or do you have an internal alarm? Do you find you're excited for the day or hold tightly to the challenges that await you? Do you have a morning routine, or are you one to wing it each morning?

And you might be sick of the same old routine and ideas ... especially when you spend more time at home than you'd like. Regardless of what you often do, consider these tips to make the most of your morning.

Greet the Morning With Your Eyes and Heart

Are you imagining Cinderella singing to the birds and animals as she awoke in the morning? You could try just that, or we can come up with a simpler approach. It's really all about perspective and outlook. If you wake up grumpy and dreading the day's events, you very well could carry that doom and gloom with you throughout the day.

On the other hand, when you greet the morning with anticipation, that optimistic attitude could follow you over the next several hours. We're not saying that your day will only be filled with rainbows and unicorns if you have the right attitude. Though, we all know that a positive outlook can shift how we go about the day.

If you're struggling with greeting the morning, consider your answers to these questions:

  • What are you excited about today?
  • How can you be a good friend to others today?
  • Look out your window and name one thing that wasn't there yesterday. Consider that each new day is a gift.

Art idea: Create a visual representation of what you anticipate each day. Grab a stack of super-bright sticky notes and jot down a word or phrase. You'll end up with a colorful bathroom mirror or front door representing your positive outlook. 

Make Your Bed to Help Your Mind and Soul

Let's all admit it, our moms were right. It's not just a to-do in the morning, but there's just something about making your bed. It's definitely a pleasant and tidy look to your room.

But there's also an emotional component to making your bed. As you're tidying the sheets and blankets, you're preparing yourself for what the day holds. And as you get ready for bed tonight, you'll see the made bed. As you turn back the covers to climb in, you're letting go of the good and the not-so-good that transpired today.

"Those with messier homes, especially to the extreme of hoarding, are known to have poorer executive function and more issues with emotional regulation, stress, and mental health," says verywellmind.com.

Who knew you could help relieve stress and have a sense of accomplishment just by making your bed? See other mental and soul health benefits of making your bed.

Move Your Body (Even When You're Stuck at Home)

Don't worry, I'm not suggesting you run 10 miles before the sun rises. (Though there are people who enjoy just that!) Think of ways you enjoy moving your body. Grab a bicycle and ride for 30 minutes or put on your walking shoes and stroll for 15 minutes around the block. It doesn't have to be a full-on workout. Getting your body moving first thing in the morning helps you physically, mentally, and emotionally. The key is to find something you enjoy doing.

"We’re all in our homes a bit more these days, which makes it easy to fall into a more physically relaxed lifestyle. To combat the negative effects of becoming too sedentary, it’s important to incorporate physical activities into our daily routines." ~greatist.com

Sick and tired of the same old ideas? It can be hard to be creative when you have spent so much time in your home the past year. Try turning up the music and dancing (yep, full-on groovin') throughout your house. Or you might want to consider laundry squats. You read that right! As you're sorting, transferring, and folding laundry, give your legs a workout with squats. You can even complete a wall sit as you read. Check out other ways to get moving in the morning (and while you WFH).

Get Dressed and Ready for the Day (While You Create Space)

With many Americans working from home, this morning hygiene routine may have been shortened a bit. Depending on your schedule and what you have planned that day, you may need a full shower and overhaul. Or you may only require a quick sprucing up.

Mix this up a bit. While it's easy to grab your loungewear (or worse, stay in your pajamas), take this opportunity each morning to clean out your closet while you get ready. Set a goal to not wear the same article of clothing for a solid month. Each morning you try on something you haven't worn in a while, you can choose whether to wear it or donate it. By the end of the month, you'll not only improve your outlook but create some closet space.

Quick tip: Use dry shampoo instead of washing and drying your hair. Dry shampoo is an aerosol mixture that helps remove oil from your hair leaving it looking fresh.

Eat Something (Even a  Little Something)

I'm continually surprised by people who don't eat anything in the morning. I'm all about saving time and energy wherever I can, but eating something in the morning is vital for your body. The word "breakfast" is actually a "breaking" of the "fast" that happens to your body overnight. While it's common, normal, and healthy for your body to fast overnight, you shouldn't overdo it and deprive your body of nutrients for too long.

There can be physical reasons you don't feel like eating breakfast, like not getting enough sleep or eating too much before bed the night before. Consider eating a small piece of fruit or cheese to start. You can see how you feel in about an hour. It might be that your body just needs some time to wake up. 

While you can take the time to prepare a fresh breakfast complete with eggs, bacon, and whole-grain toast, you might not have the time for that. Think of foods you'd enjoy in the morning. Planning a little will help you have what you need for breakfast. Quick breakfasts can be leftover scrambled eggs, a parfait made from yogurt, fruit, and granola, or even a packaged breakfast bar.

Are you a morning person? How do you greet the morning? Share in the comments.