The Best Morning Checklist For Adults For Stress-Free Mornings

This post is all about the ultimate morning checklist for adults.

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As a young adult, your mornings can look pretty busy – or rushed.

Ever had those days where you missed the first three alarms, skipped breakfast all together, and were thinking . . . “For god’s sake, why can’t I find my black ‘presentation’ shoes?

And this ends up creating a ripple effect on the rest of your day too!?

Which is exactly why having some me-time in the morning to help you prepare for the day can be priceless. It sets the tone for a stress free day.

You can start by keeping the first hour of the morning to yourself. You can use it to plan, read, or simply enjoy your morning coffee. This alone can be life changing.

I’ve noticed that I’m completely off my game when I don’t follow my morning checklist (no matter what that looks like!). And when I stick to it, I get more done before lunch than I do all day.

So, here’s the ultimate morning checklist for adults. It’s not all about workout and self care, because well, adult life is more than that. If you truly want a stress-free morning, you’ll need a checklist that’ll actually help you get things done.

Morning Checklist For Adults

prepare the night before

The secret to a productive morning routine starts the night before! It’s the best time to set yourself up for the next day. And ofc, if you don’t have a good night sleep, your next day is going to get affected.

Here are 2 simple things that’ll definitely make your mornings so much smoother.

1. View your to do list at night

Unpopular opinion, but I don’t think creating to-do list in the morning works. In fact, my brain always goes into the “It’s too much work, I’ll deal with it later.” zone if I create a to-do list in the morning and I end up procrastinating.

It’s better to look at your to do list the night before so you know if tomorrow’s a busy day or a slow day and you wake up with the same mindset.

2. Put your gym clothes out

Prepare as much as you can the night before. Lay your outfits out. If you want to go to the gym or a walk, and have a lazy brain like mine, you’d always want to skip the workout.

So, sleep with the commitment that you need to go to the gym tomorrow.

And leave visual cues to reduce resistance – like laying your gym clothes out. (Also, not related to morning routines, but getting cute gym clothes might also help.)

productive morning routine list

1. make your bed

This would probably be the smallest thing on your morning checklist for adults, but every successful person recommends it.

This hardly takes 5 mins and helps you start your day with a win by immediately ticking off your productive morning routine list.

And ofc, you’ll come back home to a clean bed after an exhausting day.

2. have your 8 hrs of sleep

You think you can survive on 4 hrs of sleep but really, you’ll just be hanging by a thread. Now, everyone talks about how important it is to have proper sleep.

But I want you to focus on having a better waking up experience as well. Waking up in a rush or to a cranky alarm sound, automatically makes you feel grumpy. That’s why I love this natural alarm clock.

It helps you wake up more naturally by gradually increasing the light in your room and using natural alarm sounds. Trust me, if you’re always irritated in the morning, this will help.

3. no phones

This might be hard. But the real reason why you go to your phone right after you get up, is because you need a dopamine hit, and you start scrolling through Instagram or your mails expecting a good news.

But the actual problem starts when that 2 min scroll lasts till 20 mins (or more) and you end up – feeling sh*tty, wasting time, and feeling sh*tty about wasting time.

So, have a no phone policy for the first hour. Trust me once you start this habit, you’d never want to go back to using your phone.

If you don’t want to rely on will power, use the freedom app to keep your phone locked for till 9 am.

4. drink water

Our body looses over 1 pound of water overnight just through respiration. So, it’s best to drink water first thing in the morning. It’s also good for your skin and improves your immunity system.

I made this habit in my teen years and now it’s a no brainer for me to get up and drink water. If you’re just starting out, you can keep a glass of water on your bedside table to be your visual cue.

5. have an hour to yourself

This could be an entire post in itself! People have a habit of getting up, getting dressed and then heading out the door.

Don’t be people! Have an hour in the morning to yourself.

If you have no time, start waking up an hour early, and just have that one to yourself. Work on yourself before you go and work for someone else.

If you are just starting out, pick 1-2 healthy habits to add to your morning checklist for adults and start from there. Even if it’s reading your book or dumping your thoughts on paper or simply sipping coffee in your balcony and enjoying some me time.

My favorite activity to have some quiet me-time is reading. And I think reading self help books is the best way to start your mornings & learn something new! Here are some of my fav reads.

Related Post : How To Start A Morning Routine You’ll Stick To!

6. get moving

This could also be a part of your productive morning routine list but I added this as a separate point because doing some physical activity in the morning can really elevate your days.

It’s obviously good for you health, but also good for your mindset. It gives you the dopamine hit that you’re looking for inside your mails and DMs.

As someone who hates working out, I’ve experienced first hand that I always end up feeling better afterwards.

And that goes for all kinds of movements, you can do yoga or go for a hot girl walk, if that’s your thing.

hot girl walk essentials

They’re literally so comfy!

7. gratitude journal

Simply write down 3 things you’re grateful for every morning. Add this to your morning checklist for adults, it’ll hardly take 5 minutes of your day but will have a positive impact on the rest of your day.

And try to be as specific as you can. The main purpose is to help you pause and really reflect on the good things in your life – even if they’re small.

I can tell you from experience that this is one thing from your productive morning routine list that’ll give you fastest results. Like you’ll start noticing a positive shift in your perspective for the most random things, and that’s amazing.

Related Post: How To Start Gratitude Journaling (Free Journal Prompts)

8. 15-minute cleaning

Cuz let’s be real this is a morning checklist for adults. It can’t be all mindset and no productivity. You gotta do what you gotta do!

Add 15 minute cleaning to your productive morning routine list. Basically, if you’re busy in the mornings and don’t have time to do a deep clean, try this.

Set a 15 minute timer, and start putting the house in order. You’ll be shocked to see how much you can get done in 15 minutes. And if you have time, you can use the momentum to continue cleaning.

In fact, you can also assign specific areas to each day.

9. Cold showers

This is one of the fun and challenging things to add to your morning checklist for adults. Especially if you live in an area where it gets cold. Taking cold showers has a lot of physical benefits, including lower stress levels and fatigue.

But I personally love cold showers for all it’s mental benefits.

When you’re about to take a cold shower, your brain will tell you to call it quits, “who’s gonna know anyway?” It’s the same voice in your head that always holds you back from getting outside your comfort zone.

Taking cold showers is just a way to silence that voice, a little each day.

10. set your intention

You always focus on “What needs to be done today?”, but how many times do you think about “What do I want TODAY to look like?”.

Add this to your morning checklist for adults to focus on your intention for the day and what do YOU want out of this day, instead of what’s expected from you?

Your intention could be a line or word – something that you’d constantly want to come back to or remember the entire day.

Most planners are only focused on your to-do list, but the 2023 Ultimate planner is specifically designed to help you be intentional about your days (with the daily planning sheet).

11. healthy breakfast

A lot of people these days skip breakfast for coffee, or something random. Exact opposite of what you should do!

Make it a non negotiable to have a healthy breakfast every single day.

If you’re running late, grab a fruit or protein shake. You can also just make overnight oats for the week and use them. (I had a phase where I ate oats every single day for breakfast for months! And they’re pretty easy to make.)

You can also take some ideas from this healthy breakfast for busy mornings cookbook.

12. Use your driving to work time

If you don’t have time to read, use audiobooks instead. See, I know life’s busy and sometimes you can’t have a 2-hour morning routine, so you need to find a way to balance it out.

On your drive to work, you can listen to podcasts (The mindset mentor is my favorite!) or audiobooks (using audible) and learn on the go.

I love learning personal growth stuff in the morning, it usually motivates me for the day. And I usually prefer a book but on days when I literally don’t have time, I turn to podcasts.

This post is all about the ultimate morning checklist for adults.

But please remember, don’t add 10 new things to your checklist at once. Start with 3 at a time. Also, you’re under no obligation to follow the same morning routine forever. In fact, it SHOULD change as you start growing.

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