I’ve previously documented my struggles with being a night owl living in an early-riser world. I have a full-time remote job that requires me to be present and work 9-to-5 despite the fact that I work from home. It’s given me a little freedom to craft my days.
Prior to working for a virtual company, I was a freelancer that did her best work at 7 p.m. If you fall under this category, congrats, and I’m actually jealous. I am not a morning person, so getting up at a ridiculous time like 5 a.m. just doesn’t work for me. And frankly, I won’t apologize for it. There’s nothing wrong with being a late-riser. What really matters is making sure that you are getting your work done during your most productive and creative times.
Having a morning routine makes all of the difference! I’m a creature of habit, so having something to look forward to in the morning that doesn’t involve work is what gets me up and ready in the morning. Here’s my perfect morning routine that’s helped me thrive!
8:15 a.m.: I am up and kicking…probably hitting snooze once or twice depending on how late I went to bed the night before. I get dressed (into some stylish loungewear). I definitely recommend not working in PJs from the night before. It is too tempting to crawl back into bed. Changing into a different outfit, even if it’s just sweats, helps me feel like I need to get moving.
The timer in my coffee maker is always set the night before so all I have to do in the morning is pour it over ice. Since the health pandemic, my boyfriend no longer has to get up and leave for school at 6 a.m., so I make us both coffee, bring it upstairs for him to casually wake him up, and shut myself in my office.
8:30 – 8:45 a.m.: I go to my desk and set up my laptop and desktop prior to our company morning call at 10 a.m. I hate having to jump right into work—it drains me. It’s important to do something for yourself before switching gears. I like to read the news in the morning, or I’ll read one of my favorite magazines if I have a new issue. Other days, I’ll journal if I feel like I need to release something.
9:30 a.m.: I review my inbox and add tasks to my to-do list from them. Sometimes my boss Slacks me early in the morning so we can review things during our team call. I try to prepare for our morning huddle by going over yesterday’s to-do list, as well. This helps me catch anything I missed!
10 a.m.: It’s team huddle time! This is how we connect as a virtual company and go through our tasks for the day. We also share daily gratitude. It’s a great way to start the workday, counting the little things we are grateful for.
11 a.m.: My coffee mug usually needs a refill by this time. While I’m filling up downstairs, my boyfriend is usually slumped over a project in the living room. We use this time to catch up and explain our plans for the rest of the day.
11:45 a.m.: Before getting completely taken over by the workday, I try to find a little time to play with my dog. Prior to the pandemic, we would kick the ball around the backyard. Now I like to go for a quick 10-minute walk. We could all use some vitamin D!
Morning routines are very personal. What works for one person might not work at all for someone else. But it’s important to experiment with different things that help you get started for a workday, especially a long one. Once you find what works for you, you need to commit.