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Friday, February 26, 2016

How to Have a Great Morning

luxe oatmeal breakfast in bed
St. Ives teamed up with NY-hot spot OatMeals to create the St. Ives Radiance Boost Bowl inspired by the natural moisturizers and ingredients found in its skincare products.

Let me be the first to tell you that I am so not a morning person. I love sleeping in, but unfortunately, life doesn't really allow that on the weekdays (and even often on the weekends!). Instead of hating my early mornings, I try to make the morning as comfortable and enjoyable as possible. There are a few things that I like to do to make sure I have a great morning:

Make a List.
For me, a lot of times, having a great, productive morning starts the night before. Have you ever laid in bed at night and thought about a dozen things for the next day? It makes it hard to sleep, doesn't it? I like to write down everything I am thinking of in list form, so it is out of my brain and on paper. That way, the next day I can review the list and make sure I take care of what needs to be done! Sometimes I write down some stupid/unnecessary things, and I give myself a good laugh the next morning! 

Set two alarms.
I always do this. I set one 15-20 minutes earlier than my 'must get up' time. That way, if I feel up to it, I get up at the first alarm and have extra time to get ready and relax. I'd say I probably get up with my first alarm 3 out of 5 days of the week! 

Play a Morning Boost playlist. 
Spotify has one, but it's fun to create your own. Do you have those songs that just make you want to get up and dance? Add those to your list and turn on the tunes when you get up. I always do and this makes such a difference!

Open the Blinds. 
Let the natural light flood in. And if you are up before the sun, turn on the lights to get your mind realizing that it is time to be fully awake! I'm a huge proponent of this because I truly think it makes you a happier, more energized person. 

Drink hot water with lemon.
I try to do this almost daily. I've read so many benefits about doing this in various articles, but even if it's all a hoax, you're still getting hydrated first thing in the morning. Plus, the dose of citrus is such an invigorating scent and taste in the morning-- especially during the winter months!

plum pretty sugar robe and St.Ives body lotion
Shower.
I'm typically a night shower-er, but when I need an extra boost or when I know I have something super important that day or night, I'll shower in the mornings. It makes you feel so much better and really wakes you up! I started using St. Ives body scrub this winter because it scrubs away dry dead skin and makes my skin feel radiant and fresh. I always make sure to moisturize afterward and have been following up with St. Ives oatmeal and shea butter body lotion. I love that it is super affordable, too (under $5!!).

Stretch. 
I just recently started doing this (since I started yoga) and it seriously improves my morning 10-fold. I spend about 10 minutes stretching, and if I have time, I'll do a few sets of push ups and sit ups. It wakes me up and makes my body feel so much better throughout the entire day. I definitely recommend trying this out, it's life changing (not even being dramatic!!).

St.Ives body lotion and scrub from their new oatmeal line

Eat breakfast. 
I never used to be a breakfast person, but after I graduated from college and started working, breakfast became an integral part of my morning. Oatmeal is one of my favorites and really gives me a good energy boost. Plus you can eat it at a table, but I also take it in my car-to-go when I'm in a rush. I love that is filling, contains many nutrients and vitamins such as potassium and calcium, and is really good for your skin.  This is why St. Ives added oatmeal to their body scrub and lotion. The benefits of oatmeal help to moisturize and hydrate super dry skin. Not to mention, the products contain 100% natural exfoliants and moisturizers, which is a big plus for my super sensitive skin.

Make Your Bed.
It's a super simple task but immediately makes me feel like I accomplished something for the day. Not to mention it makes my bedroom immediately feel more put together and, in turn, makes getting ready for the day much less hectic. 

Pick Out Your Outfit the Night Before. 
I've been doing this since middle school. Even in college, I did this. Usually, I'll even try the outfit on the night before to make sure everything works nicely together. If anything needs to be ironed/steamed, I also do that the night before. I also lay out items such as undergarments/socks/jewelry /handbag etc. to save time! That way, I can get dressed effortlessly in the morning!

white roses in mint julep cup and diptyque candle

Burn Your Favorite Candle. 
I love candles in general, but always make sure to burn a candle on mornings when I feel stressed. Scents can totally change your mood, so I usually reach for fresh scents with citrus-y notes to wake me up! 

Coffee, coffee, coffee. 
I am a coffee fanatic. I love everything about it. I typically brew my own dark roast coffee at home and drink it black. I absolutely love the pre-set functionality that my machine has because I wake up to the scent of fresh brewed coffee, which literally gets me out of bed in the morning.

Hold Off on Social Media. 
I typically sift through e-mails when I first wake up to make sure there is nothing crazy going on, but I hold off on all forms of social media until I'm fully ready for the day. I really like that I do this because it makes me able to focus on my day ahead and doesn't cloud my mind with unnecessary information.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of St. Ives. The opinions and text are all mine.

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