For all but a few, mornings are one of the hardest times of the day. You want to stay in bed, or get ready slowly, or enjoy your time. Unfortunately, this is only an option on the weekend, and sometimes not even then. Instead, you have to rush around to get ready for work and out the door on time. This isn’t always the most enjoyable experience, so here are 5 things you can do to make your mornings a little nicer.

Have a Pick-Me-Up

One of the hardest parts about the morning is waking up and staying awake. Once you are out of bed, find something that you can use as a pick me up to help you wake up all the way. Some people use a shower or a cup of coffee. In fact, coffee in moderation is actually beneficial for you. It’s packed with antioxidants, boosts metabolism, and regulates mood, as long as you avoid extra sugar. If black coffee is too radical for your taste buds, use a little organic cane sugar or raw honey. If you are not a fan of coffee, try an herbal tea or your favorite fruit.

Pick Out Your Clothes

One of the many reasons mornings are so stressful is because it’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the things you have to do. Scratch one item off your list by picking out your clothes the night before. Not sure what to pick out? Go through your closet and donate or sell anything you haven’t worn in the past 3 months. It’s a domino effect, less stuff means less stress and less stress makes every morning more enjoyable.

Invigorate Your Senses

Create a visually stimulating yet relaxing environment by clearing away the clutter in at least one area of the house and investing in a couple plants. For an energizing air freshener, use citrus based essential oils mixed with alcohol and water. Peppermint and spearmint are also uplifting scents that boost productivity and improve concentration. Many essential oil distributors also sell other products, such as diffusers, which make freshening up your home much easier.

Have a Morning Soundtrack

Music can either relax you or help you have more energy, depending on what you choose to listen to. If your morning routine is stressful, choose some relaxing music to accompany what you are doing. If you have a hard time getting going, choose some music that is a little more upbeat. Play the music on your phone so that you can carry it with you as you get ready and eat breakfast. You can also use motivational speeches if you find that you don’t want to listen to music one morning.

Eat a Light Breakfast

Contrary to popular myth, breakfast doesn’t need to be your biggest meal of the day. However, it’s still a good idea to have something light to stabilize blood sugar levels. The list of options is endless. Fruit salad and yogurt, scrambled eggs with vegetables, whole-grain toast with smashed avocado, and cereal are a few great ideas when it comes to fueling yourself up for the day.

These tips will only be partially effective if you don’t get adequate rest on a habitual basis, so shut out the lights and electronics at least a half hour before heading to bed and avoid long naps during the day. Now with a little pick-me-up waiting for you, a cleaned-out closet, an invigorating environment, some cool tunes, and a bite of nutritious breakfast, you can tolerate the red lights on the way to work.

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