The Ultimate Morning Routine Checklist for a Productive Day

Woman laying in bed and smiling.

Morning routines are a trending topic these days. Whether you’re a morning person or not, you’ve probably recognized that starting your mornings off on the right foot profoundly affects how the rest of the day unfolds.

While many articles are out there discussing the benefits of a morning routine and how to get started, it is also helpful to have a step-by-step action plan. That way, there’s no gray area, and you know what to do to start building a morning routine that kickstarts your day- and your life- over time.

This article will cover a step-by-step guide for building a foolproof morning routine. Plus, I’ll give you the ultimate checklist to choose your favorite morning routine ideas and integrate them into your life as soon as possible.

How to Get Started with a Morning Routine: The Basics

Let’s get as practical and detail-oriented as possible here. That way, you know exactly what to do.

Here’s an exact morning routine checklist.

Step # 1: Get Up Earlier

While your morning routine can start whenever you wake up, if you have a strict timeline to adhere to (to get to work or drop your kids off at school), it will help to give yourself a few extra minutes in the morning. Ideally, you want to give yourself more time to do everything you want to accomplish before your day starts.

If you’re hesitant, start setting your alarm 5 minutes earlier than usual. Then, add five extra minutes each day (or each week if you’re struggling) until you reach your ideal wake-up time.

Too tired to get up each morning? You should rewind to one important pre-step for building a morning routine: getting to bed early. Get to bed at a decent hour, ditch screen time before bed, and sleep in a dark, quiet room to maximize your sleep quality and wake up feeling great.

Related Article: 8 Important Steps To Be the Best Version Of Yourself

Step # 2: Find Your Why

Not a morning person? To be honest, who is? To feel motivated each morning and avoid hitting that snooze button on your alarm, make sure you have a solid reason set in your mind that will help you skip out of bed each morning. There’s nothing like keeping your full potential (and goals) in mind to keep you motivated.

Examples include:

  • Working out first thing in the morning to jumpstart your metabolism and losing 5 pounds
  • Getting ahead on work tasks so you can have more free time later
  • Spending quality time with family and friends each morning before life gets too busy
  • Prioritize mental health to reduce your daily anxiety and blood pressure
  • Feel less reactive each day to be a better parent and spouse

Overall, the more detailed you can be, the better.

Related Article: 15 Inspiring Tips from Real People: How to Stay Motivated and in Shape

Step # 3: Start Your Day with a Plan

How many of us are guilty of rolling out of bed and rushing out the door in full panic mode? There’s a lot of struggling, a bit of yelling, and not a lot of zen. It’s time to change this. When you get up earlier, take advantage of that time to be intentional and start your day from a place of calm that’ll help you feel good as you tackle whatever the day brings.

Here’s a sample plan. Of course, it’ll vary for each individual and their needs.

  • Wake up (without hitting the snooze button) and open the blinds
  • Take 5 minutes to sit in silence and practice mindful breathing
  • Drink one glass of water
  • Do a 10-minute workout or yoga session
  • Read one page of your favorite book
  • Spend 15 minutes writing down your goals, affirmations, and reflections from the day before
  • Eat a healthy breakfast and make lunch for the day ahead
  • Listen to your favorite song while taking a shower

Step # 4: Choose What’ll Fill Your Cup

Review the long list of ideas below and choose as many as you want to solidify your morning routine. You can adjust, add, or remove components that aren’t working for you. It’s essential to evaluate your morning routine and make any changes to improve your day.

That’s all there is to it! Once you’ve got a plan and have chosen your morning routine ideas, try to stay as consistent as possible to build the habit.

Morning Routine Ideas: A Full List

Now that you have a morning routine checklist, it’s time to figure out what exactly to put in it. Here’s a complete list of morning routine ideas, so you can choose what works for you and add it to your daily schedule:

  • Meditate or pray in a quiet space
  • Practice deep breathing (such as five breathes or for 5 minutes)
  • Keep your phone on “do not disturb” mode and keep it out of site
  • Smile to activate a good mood and release feel-good hormones
  • Go for a brisk walk (outside, down the hall, or on a treadmill)
  • Bask in the glow of the rising sun
  • Move your body in any way that feels good
  • Try a 10-minute HIIT workout
  • Do yoga or stretch
  • Dance
  • Set daily intentions, typically written
  • Write, read, say out loud, and listen to affirmations
  • Express gratitude- out loud or in written form
  • Drink a glass or two of water
  • Relax and enjoy a hot beverage (tea or coffee) mindfully
  • Journal- free form or guided
  • Read a favorite book or listen to an audiobook
  • Read an inspiring quote
  • Read a favorite article or about a topic of interest
  • Take a shower- hot for relaxing or cold for invigorating
  • Eat a nourishing breakfast when you’re ready
  • Put on your favorite outfit (ideally one that you can move in)
  • Spend time with family, friends, or pets
  • Listen to your favorite music or an insightful podcast
  • Sing or hum
  • Plan your day with thoughtful intention
  • Visualize how your day will go
  • Review your daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly goals
  • Self-care, including a skin routine, oral care, etc.
  • Take time for a consistent daily bowel movement (seriously!)

How to Choose the Perfect Morning Routine

Now that you have a sample morning routine checklist and the ultimate list of morning routine ideas, it’s time to start crafting the perfect one for you. It’s all about trial and error, as everyone is different. Start by choosing a few items off this list to try out each day, be consistent with your practice, note what works best for you, and adjust or remove as needed.

Remember that this is your routine, and you can make whatever works best for you and your lifestyle. Be sure to explore the options to find what resonates with you. Start today, and soon you’ll wake up feeling energized and ready to take on the day!

Make Your Mornings a Habit

A morning routine doesn’t have to be a daunting task. It can be one of the most rewarding habits you establish in your life. It’s about finding what works best for you and making it a daily habit.

The best way to start a habit is to start as small as possible. Starting small will keep you from feeling overwhelmed and calling it quits before you make any measurable progress. So start with one task and a few minutes at a time.

If you can stay consistent, you’ll eventually reach a point when you can’t imagine starting your day without your morning routine. By then, it will become an effortless part of your day, and you’ll be ready to take on whatever the day brings!

The Benefits of a Morning Routine

A morning routine brings many benefits that can positively affect your whole day and beyond. Here are just a few of the many benefits of having a consistent morning routine:

  • Increase your productivity and focus for the day
  • Set the tone for a positive mindset that will last all-day
  • Create a sense of balance and calm
  • Feel more energized and ready to take on the day
  • Reduce stress, anxiety, and depression
  • Create better habits that will positively affect your overall life
  • Have more time in your day to focus on things that matter
  • Feel more motivated and inspired
  • Become a better version of yourself
  • Improve your relationships- with yourself and others

Overall, when you wake up and start your day intentionally- rather than rushing around in a daze- it’ll make a massive difference (especially if you’re a busy mom).

The Ultimate Morning Routine Checklist for a Productive Day

Now that you know the basics of building a morning routine and a complete list of ideas, all that’s left to do is put it into practice and keep up consistently. Whether you are new to a mindful morning routine or want to step it up, I hope this article has helped.

Use this ultimate morning routine checklist to pick and choose your favorite ideas and create a morning routine that’ll help you have the most productive day ever.

Featured Image Credit: VaDrobotBO /

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Pri Kingston

Ash & Pri are the Founders of and have spent the last decade building their way towards financial freedom and a lifetime of memories. Having successfully achieved their early retirement goal in under 10 years, they look forward to sharing their financial sense with like-minded people. Read more about Ash & Pri in the 'About Us' section.