By Gabrielle Rabon, Northwestern ‘21
A Student’s Guide to the Perfect Morning Routine
It can be difficult to find that perfect morning routine, especially without the structure of on-campus classes. I’m not a morning person by any stretch of the imagination, but since NU went online in the spring I’ve been trying to set up a routine when I wake up. I’ve tried to find a balance between a routine that holds me accountable and makes me feel accomplished and one that feels natural and sustainable. I’m sure my routine will continue to evolve, but right now it’s made of three general steps: reset, refresh, recharge. Reset! First, and this is a hard one, get out of bed as soon as your alarm goes off. My dad taught me this one, and it’s stuck with me because it really does make me feel more awake throughout the day. Pro tip: you could be extra motivated and set a consistent alarm for every day, but I can’t bring myself to do it. Second, make your bed! If you get nothing else done for the rest of the day, you’ll have done that one thing. This is the hill I will die on (ask my roommate); it’s one of the most important parts of my day. Next, rehydrate your body with a glass of water as soon as you get up. This one feels pretty intuitive, but if you’re not convinced maybe Business Insider will change your mind. Then, spend some time with yourself. This step is a lot more flexible than the first two: you can journal, meditate, dance, whatever makes you feel at peace with yourself. Recently I’ve been starting my day with a Chloe Ting workout. Refresh! This step is optional, but I’m big on supplements. My mom is a nurse and she’s had my brother and I taking multivitamins since we were little. Usually I take a multivitamin and an iron supplement out of habit, but there’s debate as to whether they’re effective so if you’re not buying it I won’t shame you. Now for perhaps the most refreshing step of all: shower! This is especially key if you decided to work out as a part of your reset, but I’d recommend it regardless. In order to not dry out my hair, I only wash it every other day, but to help with my semi-curls I apply leave-in conditioner once or twice a week. Skincare is one of my favorite forms of #selfcare. It can be as simple as a quick moisturizer, but it elevates the way I feel in my skin for the whole day.
Recharge! Finally, it’s time to recharge! Take a second to celebrate all you’ve accomplished so far! Celebrate while refueling by sitting down and eating a celebratory breakfast. For me, food is a meditative experience (that’s part of why I work at BrewBike!). I try to slow down a bit while preparing and eating my breakfast before jumping into the hustle and bustle of the day. Today, like most days, my breakfast consists of toast, fresh fruit and (of course) coffee!
Obviously there’s no one perfect morning routine that will work for everyone, but in my mind even putting in the effort to create a routine is a step in the right direction. My hope is that my routine, or even just the three main points, will inspire you to create one that works for you. Morning routines are a great way to energize and reflect before starting the day, and who could say no to an excuse to sit down and drink coffee?