O.A. Insights: My morning routine


For a long time, especially when I first entered the Working World, I did not have a morning routine. I could barely get out the door without forgetting my keys - let alone make time (hours it felt like!) for meditation, dry brushing and whatever other wellness trend Instagram was telling me I should do.

This was how my mornings typically went: wake up to the blaring sound of my alarm, go for a short run while still half-sleeping, take the fastest shower known to man, throw all my shit in my bag (hopefully not forgetting anything), and rush to the subway (hair still wet, adjusting my suit). 

I would collapse at my desk - finally - while downing a cup of coffee and scouring through emails. 

Let me just say that was not fun. But, it seemed to happen every morning no matter how much I planned ahead. I just could not get my shit together. 

It wasn't until I moved to Brooklyn, which felt oh so far away that forced me to change my routine. I started meditating in the morning, instead of rushing off to an intense workout. I spent time with Dupi instead of sleeping in. I slowly prepared for the day ahead instead of coming at it full charge.

And, I realized that over time as i continued to practice these new morning rituals i felt...happier. my days went by slower, and it seemed that i was more purposeful in all that i did. so, i kept "refining" my routine.

once I moved to california, my morning routines took on a whole new level. i actually think they are the most important part of my day, because as an entrepreneur who doesn't have a set schedule - these tiny actions give me some semblance of normalcy in an otherwise hectic day. i noticed that if i don't do them, my day gets thrown off.

the main point i want to get across here is: you do you. a morning routine (or any "wellness" practice) is supposed to enhance our lives, not add stress to them. they should also change and adjust based on what you need in your life at this very moment.

so, in this version of o.a. insights i'll give you some of my favorite things to do it the a.m. though it's totally up to you how you structure it. maybe you really enjoy working out in the morning. or maybe you would rather have a cup of coffee. make the adjustments you need, but know that the power comes in the consistency of doin' it! 

morning must-haves (things I do no matter what):

  • tidy my space: I am a huge neat freak, and I think that space is extremely important to productivity, and overall happiness! i always make sure to make my bed, and put anything away i left out from the night before. it's the little things!
  • sip on water + lemon: I always start my day with a glass of lukewarm water + lemon. it helps with digestion, and i'm not that good at drinking water throughout the day, so it jump starts my intake before moving on to coffee.
  • sit silently / meditate: depending on my mood, i will take time to either sit in silence, or meditate for at least 5 minutes (usually around 15). this practice never looks the same - but no matter what it grounds me and clears my mind for the day ahead.
  • enjoy a coffee: i specifically chose the word enjoy. it's really important to me that i take time to sip on a warm cup of coffee while writing or answering emails instead of quickly ingesting it while running off to start my day. even if i just take a couple of sips, it gets me feel less scattered and stressed.


morning nice-to-haves (things I do when I have a ton of time):

  • relax into a long meditation: on a nice, slow morning I make time for a long meditation, usually unguided. i pop on some calming music, settle into a comfy seat, and let go for anywhere from 30 - 45 minutes. 
  • do an early morning brain dump: this is one of my favorite morning activities (i wrote a whole post about it here!). this doesn't happen every morning, but when it does my brain feels infinitely more creative. 
  • complete a tapping exercise: have you ever heard of eft tapping? it's essentially self-guided acupressure that helps to aligns energy and intentions. it's super interesting, and i'll be releasing a podcast with kate winch (an eft expert) soon! for now, check out her website and try out a 10 minute guided tapping experience - it definitely raises your vibration :) 
  • spice up my coffee: I usually like to add in vital proteins collagen powder to my warm coffee in the morning - it makes my hair and skin shine. I've recently been getting into bulletproof coffee and it's honestly been amazing. i feel so much more awake and have longer, sustained energy throughout the day (I just add trader joe's coconut oil to my coffee).
  • workout: i used to be a morning work out person only. but lately, i've been enjoying easing in to my mornings and doing a workout later in the day. when i'm feeling up to it, or i have time i'll start my day with a boxing class or long run - it feels really nice to get moving early on!


what are your morning rituals? tell me in the comments below!


o.a. insights is a new, short-form weekly blog series from on adulting that covers anything and everything in my life - from what i do each day to the products in my wardrobe. look out for more each friday! 

Katina Mountanos