Virtual Primary Care

Healthy Habits for Professional Productivity and Well-Being, Part 2 THE MORNING ROUTINE

Establishing That All Important Morning Routine

Part one of this series on healthy habits for professional productivity and well-being discussed the importance of sleep hygiene, especially getting a good night’s sleep. Restful sleep is key to waking up refreshed and ready to tackle a hard day’s work.

Mistakes hitting the snooze button

Don’t Make the Snooze Button Mistake!

As the Director of Behavioral Health here at Lyric Health, this month’s virtual care blog we will begin by starting the morning, one of the biggest mistakes that people make is hitting the snooze button on their alarm or cell phone clocks.

Both you and I know how this story ends, right? That extra 5 minutes that we are bargaining for turns into 30 minutes, and now we start the day with an unwanted delay, which may not only throw us off our routine but result in rushing through the morning to

make up for lost time, especially if we have the extra task of getting the kids off to school.

Not exactly the state of mind we want to achieve in order to start the workday. Suze Orman, the financial guru, is known for her work productivity, which has resulted in great professional success. As a guest on her talk show a few years ago, I could see her excitement as she shared the unique way she gets out of bed every morning. As soon as her alarm goes off, instead of lying in bed to get an extra few Z’s, she counts to five, and no matter how tired she may be, she gets out of bed. Now, this may seem daunting to some, like jumping into a cold ocean but practicing this routine daily becomes easier. 

To keep the flow of the morning, place your slippers and other morning-wear gear by your bed, making it much easier to move from your bed into your morning tasks. You may also want to have a glass of water at your ready on your nightstand.

To keep the flow of the morning!

Keep the Water Flowing in the Morning!

Drinking a glass of water, even before you have your tea or morning joe (the beverage, not the news program), will rehydrate you after a night’s sleep.  

Inner peace is important for balancing a busy day. Many of my clients and patients center themselves on morning prayer, reading morning affirmations, yoga, or stretching. If you can also fit in some morning exercise before you start the workday, that will give you a natural emotional and physical boost of energy and determination. Some people like to exercise at lunchtime or after work. Whatever floats your boat, go for it. Exercise is essential for wellness and productivityI will address the importance of establishing an exercise routine in a follow-up later in this Healthy Habits series. 

But speaking about news programs, you may want to turn on your favorite morning news show while you are going about your tasks. The light from the TV will inhibit the production of melatonin, which in turn will help you be more awake and alert. It will also inform you of vital news events and the weather so that you can be socially smart and appropriately dressed for your commute if you have to travel for work.

Experts agree that breakfast is the most important meal of the day

The Most Important Meal of the Day!

Experts agree that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Eat a breakfast that delivers energy-rich nutrients like glycogen to your body and brain. This will provide you with the physical energy, high-level cognition, and concentration to start your workday right. Some fruits, whole-grain toast, oatmeal, and yogurts are known to replenish glycogen stores in the body.   

Finally, schedule time in your morning routine to get your “head right and ready” for office work or working from home by setting goals and prioritizing your tasks for the day.

The to-do list, scheduler, and day planner are invaluable tools—the GPS, road map, and guardrails that will keep you on track and away from the possibility of a train wreck of a day.

I Look Forward to Seeing You Next Month For Part 3 of this series on healthy habits for professional productivity and well-being. 

In the meantime, keep working on perfecting your morning routine. Soon enough, you will find yourself less stressed, more productive, and content—and you might even whistle while you work! 

Dr. Jeffrey Gardere

Dr. Jeffrey Gardere


Dr. Jeff is a monthly contributor for Lyric Health and one of the most widely sought-after experts in the mental health field.

About Lyric

Lyric’s virtual primary care improves employees’ lives with personalized primary care, urgent care, mental health services, and caregiver support leading to better health outcomes while reducing employer costs.

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