My Morning Routine – And Why You Need One Too

Ever since I discovered and read The Miracle Morning back in July, I have been waking up early and starting my days with a series of steps known as S.A.V.E.R.S. I wrote an entire blog post back in August about how the Miracle Morning was changing my life, and since then I have gotten SO many questions about my morning routine.

If you have never heard of the Miracle Morning (or if you’ve heard of it and would like to know more), you can read my original review here.

Today, I’m going to walk you through my morning routine step by step to give you a better idea of how I spend my time in the mornings and how this new morning routine has changed my life. Ready? Let’s do it!

MY MORNING ROUTINE:

Before we dive in, let me just say that my morning routine does vary a bit from day to day. While I do each of these steps every morning, it’s not always in the same order, and it almost never takes me the same amount of time.

Sometimes my morning routine can take 30 minutes… other days it might be 3 hours. It depends on so many factors like how much time I have, how much work I need to get done, how I’m feeling that day… even what the weather is like.

Suffice it to say though, that I always get each one of my S.A.V.E.R.S. done, even if some days it is an abbreviated version as described in the 6-minute Miracle Morning.

Here's a glimpse into my morning routine! You know you've been dying to know :)

* This post may contain affiliate links. In plain English, this means that I may receive a small commission (at no cost to you) if you subscribe or purchase something through the links provided. You will never see me post a link to a product or service that I haven’t used myself and love! (Learn more here)

WAKE UP

Here's a glimpse into my morning routine! You know you've been dying to know :)My typical day starts at 5:30am… Yup! You read that right ;) I had always been an early riser before, usually waking up around 6:00 – 7:00am.  Waking up just an hour earlier came pretty naturally to me, especially considering the fact that my husband wakes up around 5:30 for work anyway.

As soon as I wake up, I brush my teeth and splash my face with cold water. I find that this helps me to wake up easier. I change into my workout clothes (usually something comfy for yoga), and head downstairs to make some coffee.

<< That’s my awesome new Chemex pour-over brewer, by the way, and it makes a mean cup of joe!

I make coffee for me and Mark, then I sit down to drink it while we chat a bit before he heads off to work. I have to admit, this is one of the main reasons that I like waking up early… just to have a bit more time with him :)

SILENCE

Here's a glimpse into my morning routine! You know you've been dying to know :)Silence is the “S” in my S.A.V.E.R.S. For me, it always comes first. There are many ways that you can practice silence, but the main interpretation is through meditation.

I had never meditated seriously before I started the Miracle Morning, but now I don’t know what I would do without it. If you’ve never meditated before, I highly recommend it! It can take some getting used to at first but once you get the hang of it, you’ll love it!

When the weather is nice, I like to meditate outside. Yesterday, for example, was unseasonably warm for December, and I was lucky to catch this beautiful sunrise while I was outside as well!

Whenever the weather doesn’t cooperate, I just unroll my yoga mat and sit on the floor at the foot of my bed instead of meditating outside.

Either way, I meditate for 10-20 minutes. Sometimes I just sit in silence, other times I listen to a guided meditation from an app like Headspace or Stop, Breathe & Think.

AFFIRMATIONS

Here's a glimpse into my morning routine! You know you've been dying to know :)Affirmations are next on my list, and they are admittedly the weakest link in my morning routine.

I have always felt like a bit of a dork reciting affirmations aloud… kind of like that Stuart Smalley character from SNL… remember him? “I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and gosh darn it… people like me!”

Yeah… It’s still a hump I need to get over. I did however, find this 30 Day Affirmation Challenge by Brian Tracy and started to read just one single affirmation out loud each day. In fact, I repeat that one single affirmation several times throughout the day; not just in the morning.

Hal Elrod actually did a whole podcast about creating affirmations that actually work. It’s a great listen, as are all of his podcasts. I’ll be going through this exercise this week, actually. Since I know that this is the weak link in my morning S.A.V.E.R.S.

VISUALIZATION

Here's a glimpse into my morning routine! You know you've been dying to know :)Also known as mental rehearsal, visualization is the practice of creating mental pictures of specific behaviors and outcomes occurring in your life.

There are many ways to achieve this visualization. You could simply imagine it in your head, or create a vision board poster to look at…

I decided to make a TMM Vision Board on Pinterest that I can browse through to visualize the life I want, and different things that I want to achieve.

Feel free to go check it out, steal borrow some ideas for your own vision board, or simply gaze at all of the pretty pictures for a while.

EXERCISE

Here's a glimpse into my morning routine! You know you've been dying to know :)This is where the my morning routine starts to really vary in length. Some days, if I’m in a rush or feeling particularly unmotivated, I’ll simply stretch for a few minutes, do some sun salutations, or maybe just a few jumping jacks to get my blood flowing.

Most days though, I’ll do a full yoga routine, following along with Adrienne (my favorite YouTube Yogi).

If the weather is particularly nice, I’ll even get out for a long walk/run with Bentley (the cutest mutt in the world).

So, on a short day my exercise routine will last 5 minutes… on a good long day? More like 30 minutes to an hour. Either way, I get the blood flowing, and set momentum in motion for the rest of the day :)

SHOWER BREAK

Sorry, no pic for this one ;) Haha! I don’t know about you, but after exercising I really can’t bring myself to do anything else unless I shower first. This is where I connect my iPhone to my wireless speakers and jam out to Pandora for a while…

OK, back to the important stuff:

READING

Here's a glimpse into my morning routine! You know you've been dying to know :)This is one of my favorite parts of my Miracle Morning routine! If you know me at all by now, then you know how much I devour all things personal development. I’m a HUGE proponent of self-improvement and I strive to make myself a little bit better each and every day.

My reading is another step that varies in length from day to day. Most days, I read for about 20 minutes. Currently, I’m reading Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert.

This is also the time of my morning that I like to make myself some breakfast. I read while I’m cooking (not too sure how safe that is), and then I read some more while I eat.

Once breakfast and reading are done, it’s time to move on to my favorite life SAVERS step!

SCRIBING (JOURNALING)

This is Hal’s fun play on writing or journaling. Taking the time to put your thoughts and feelings on paper not only clears your mind, but it also allows you to look back and see your progress once you get a good log going.

It’s no coincidence that I started Bullet Journaling around the same time that I began my Miracle Morning routine. While my bullet journal is not a traditional journal by any means (it’s also my planner, scheduler, and task-tracker), I do consider it to be my “Scribing” for the day.

Here's a glimpse into my morning routine! You know you've been dying to know :)

Ignore the mess on the floor for a moment and feast your eyes on my absolute favorite place in my house… my desk. This is where the magic happens, folks!

Every morning, I come up here to my office and enjoy that gorgeous morning sunlight while I plan out my day in my Bullet Journal.

This is by far the longest part of my morning routine. Some days it’s just a quick glance at my daily to-do’s. But most days I spend a good hour or more with my Bullet Journal.

One thing that has really helped me to journal more in the traditional sense (writing down my thoughts and feelings) is the daily prompts in the #PlanWithMeChallenge that I host with Kim (Tiny Ray of Sunshine) and Jessica (Pretty Prints & Paper).

Here are a few of my most recent entries full of introspection, self-evaluation, and mindfulness:

Here's a glimpse into my morning routine! You know you've been dying to know :) Here's a glimpse into my morning routine! You know you've been dying to know :)

Here's a glimpse into my morning routine! You know you've been dying to know :) Here's a glimpse into my morning routine! You know you've been dying to know :)

WRAPPING IT UP

So that’s it! My morning routine in a nutshell!

Once I’m done with my journaling, it’s time for me to get started with my work day. Usually this means checking in with social media for about an hour and then getting on with whatever is on my to-do list for the day.

So, why do YOU need a morning routine?

It’s simple. A well-established morning routine sets you on the right path for the rest of your day. By building a positive momentum of activity and mindfulness first thing in the morning, you are setting yourself up to have a successful day.

I often get asked how I find the time to get things done, or how I remain so productive all the time. I can honestly say that I attribute it all to the Miracle Morning and the amazing life change that I have experienced because of it.

I hope you enjoyed this glimpse into my morning routine! I’d love to hear what you think, so please comment below :)

Kara Benz
Kara Benz is the artist and author behind Boho Berry, where she inspires her readers to lead a more centered, fulfilled, and inspired life. Kara also runs a successful sticker shop on Etsy – Boho Berry Paperie.
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  • Kayse

    Love this idea! So great!

  • I hope to get this started as well! I am so NOT a morning person but I know doing this could benefit my day. Big Magic is next on my reading list also! Please let us know how you like it!

  • This was such a lovely read, Kara! I’ve struggled all year to create a morning routine and even tried the SAVERS concept when you first shared about it in your other post, but this one gave me the level of detail I needed to see to understand where you fit in other real components as well such as brushing your teeth, showering, and more. It makes me so happy to hear that the #planwithmechallenge helped you to get your scribing going :) I love how we can all inspire and lift each other up in our goals of self-betterment! Affirmations are super powerful, a book that really helped me start using them was “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill. Brian Tracy has a lot of great resources as well, his CDs in particular are awesome to walk you through different aims you’re trying to achieve. I’ve made a few cards here and there and have even dedicated a full page to it before in my other Bullet Journals and it helps when I remember to read it. With this system in place, that’ll be the driving force to help me remember to read it. A well crafted vision board will also help (; Anyways, thank you again so much for the article, I’d been looking forward to something like this, all year you could say :) You are a wonderful blogger, friend, and all around person. Excited to see what you come up with next! :)

    • Aw! Thanks Kim! I love “Think and Grow Rich”… one of my all time favorites! That reminds me that I wanted to put it back on my “Books to Read” list for 2016 :)

      As far as affirmations go, I think I want to create a folder of some sort… maybe an envelope within my BuJo? Inside, I’d put index cards with my favorite affirmations written on them. Each day, maybe pull out 2 or 3 to read out loud each morning. :)

  • Inspirering as always Kara. Thank you for sharing. I’m all about self development too. Could you be convinced to do a top X books you’ve read that has helped you? I used to have a great morning routine, but with the arrival of our 16-day-old son that went out the window. I’m desperate for some sort of new routine though, especially come January when my husband returns to work. I can’t wait to return to this post and slowly incorporate the elements into my morning.

    • Thanks girl! I actually have an article scheduled for later this month on the top books that have changed my life so stay tuned for sure :)

      • Yay! I will. I’m planning a collection of titles in my bullet journal, so your post will be very timely. :)

  • Marie Kendrick

    I’ve recently read both The Miracle Morning and Big magic. I really enjoyed both of them. I’ve been a little afraid of starting the TMM as I still have a “not a morning person” block. Particularly in the winter. Hopefully your post might motivate me into so action.
    P.S. Eat, pray, love by Elizabeth Gilbert is also an awesome book if you haven’t read it but don’t watch the film because it’s awful! Lol.

    • Eat, Pray, Love is in my top 3 books of ALL time! And I agree about the movie haha! I just love Liz’s writing style! I have the audiobook version of Big Magic as well… did you know that she personally narrated the audiobook? It’s wonderful! :)

      • Eilis

        and here I was wondering how good was Big Magic, I love so much her writing style.. but I have never read self development books (tho eat, pray, love is kind of one). I really want to read Big Magic this year!

  • Emily Scott

    I love my morning routine. You’re absolutely right that it sets you up for the rest of your day. Each morning I exercise, write my morning pages, play piano, read scriptures, then do chores before showering and starting my day. I feel like I should add meditation in there somewhere though. I’ve tried in the past, but I’ve never made it stick. And I LOVE “Big Magic”! Total game changer! I’m currently reading “The Artist’s Way” (highly reccomend) but when I’m done, I’m probably going to go back through “Big Magic.”

    • I haven’t heard of The Artist’s Way, Emily! Who’s the author? I’m always looking for new books to add to my list, so thanks!

      Meditation has probably been the biggest game-changer for me in the past 6 months. I will say that at first I thought that I was “doing it wrong” because I couldn’t get my mind to stop wandering. Once I realized that was a PART of the process, it all sort of clicked into place for me. I hope you’ll give it another try :)

      • Emily Scott

        The Artist’s Way is by Julia Cameron. She focuses on 12 weeks of healing creative block. I’ll definitely give meditation another try! Thank :)

        • Awesome! Thank you! It’s going on my “books to read” list right now :)

  • I just love your blog. I read your other Miracle Morning post, and it made me realize how my own morning routine (if you could call it that) was pure chaos. Since then, I’ve tried waking up earlier, meditating a little, doing something fun… it seems to be helping. And this post has given me so many more ideas. Thank you for sharing!

    • You’re very welcome, Jess! I’d recommend maybe adding in one new element to your routine at a time? Maybe that will help ease you into it… before you know it you’ll be LOVING your mornings :)

  • Galinette

    I really really want to have a morning routine, but it’s seems impossible with my baby, and my future new life, for the moment. But I keep the idea in my Bujo, so maybe one day I could make it happen!!

    • It’s always hard when you have a baby. Could you possibly try to do the abbreviated version (6-minute miracle morning) that I linked to above? Best of luck to you :)

  • Shannon Paige

    I love routines as well- they definitely help me. Lately I don’t mind being woken up early by my dogs to go out because it gives me extra time to do blog stuff and lay in bed with my coffee and my pups a little longer :) *thegoodthingscomin.wordpress.com

    • Don’t you just love that time in the morning? Thanks Shannon! :)

  • I adore the structured routine idea! I’ll definitely have to try and implement Miracle Mornings into my life – it sounds so amazing! (:

  • Charlotte Dugas

    I saw the Miracle Morning concept broken down as SAVERS and saved the article in Pocket. I don’t quite make it through the entire thing in the morning, I am most consistent with Silence (I meditate with Headspace, too), Exercise (a short yoga sequence every morning), and Reading (I save personal development articles from various sites, including this one, in Feedly and Pocket). I am working on Scribing in the morning again (right now I do it at night), and am trying to figure out how to do the Affirmation and Visualization.

  • Love it! I’m not naturally a morning person or an early riser so I’ve been hesitant to get the Miracle Morning. It is something I would like to persue at some point though as I would like to be more productive and awake in the mornings!

    • It’s definitely a jump-start to my days and I love it for that! It’s funny how I don’t mind waking up early now because I know what a boost it will be for the rest of the day :)

  • Virna Pamela @ Artsy Nanay

    What a huge coincidence! I have been reading your blog for a few months now, and I have recently decided to start my own. Now, my first few posts are also about my own morning routine, where I have mentioned you as one of my inspirations. You can read them here: http://www.artsynanay.com/my-life/complete-guide-perfect-morning-routine/ and here: http://www.artsynanay.com/my-life/morning-routine-personal-experience/.

    Thank you for being such a wonderful inspiration to me (and I know you constantly inspire your other readers as well)!

  • I really love this post Kara, and your morning routine sounds so peaceful and powerful. I’m already doing some similar things for my own morning routine, but getting up earlier has been something I’ve been contemplating for a long time now, and you have given me the push that I needed to really give it a try! Thank you for your beautiful and wise words, art and kindness <3

    • Lovely comment Murielle! Thank you so much for your kind words as always! You have been such an inspiration to me as well. Hugs, friend! :)

  • Lisa Garber

    Just found this blog from a MM Facebook page. Loved it. Thank you for your inspiration. And your bullet journal is a piece of art. Maybe one day I will share mine. That way others can see what a bullet journal looks like from someone without any artistic talent!…but it still works.

    • Aw, thanks Lisa! You should check out the “Original Bullet Journal” group on Facebook… it’s filled with others who stick to the original method without decorations… I still think they are beautiful as well! It’s all about what works for you :)

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  • Thank you for writing this! I’ve recently discovered your blog, and have started a BuJo, and tried out the miracle morning…I’m hoping to get my life back on track and I’ve found your posts inspiring and I’m actually getting off my butt and doing something about it…I wrote about how my first morning went on my blog: https://thecrazyhasian.wordpress.com/2015/12/16/my-miracle-morning-was-rough/ if you care to read how you are helping others change their lives :)

  • Christie Brannan Taylor

    As a working mom, I would love to have morning and evening routines (not chores, but things I enjoy; to level me out!), but they seem to escape me. Any suggestions? And, how long does your morning routine take?

    • My suggestion would be to give the Miracle Morning routine a try… It’s all about self-love and self-care vs. chores and to-dos… I think it would suit you very well :) My morning routine varies, as I mentioned in the post, depending on how much time I have and how in-depth I get with each of the steps… It can be as short as 30 minutes or as long as 3 hours :)

      • Christie Brannan Taylor

        Step 1, read the book. Got it on my list. ;)

  • Thanks for sharing your morning routine! I’ve been trying to follow an Ayurvedic morning routine and the thing I have been doing that makes a big difference everyday is a warm beverage and self oil massage (Abhyanga) before 7 am. At first the self massage felt very indulgent but I feel it’s about the best thing for my self care and it takes only 5-8 minutes. I feel like I’m putting on a protective layer both physically and emotionally every morning. I hope to add some early morning journaling right after my shower. Getting my Midori TN out first thing before any computer or phone time would help me so much!

    • Oh my, that self-massage actually sounds wonderful! I’m off to google this right now! Thanks :)

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  • Cait Sherwood

    Wow, I loved reading this. Thanks for sharing so much of what you actually do during your miracle mornings. I’ve heard of this book and I’ve heard Hal on interviews, but reading this is really making me want to finally read the book. I do have a morning routine. I notice that I really need to be alone in the morning. Also, I love the way you bullet journal!

    • Thanks Cait! MM has definitely been a huge transformation process for me this year! It’s definitely worth picking up a copy of the book and adding a morning routine into your life… even if it’s a short one ;) Happy New Year!

  • Thank you for sharing your morning routine. I think the Morning Miracle may be exactly what I need!

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  • Theresa

    Hi. I just started following you on Instagram and here to reading your posts. I love your Bullett journal setup. I’m using some of it in my TN. though I found its not wide enough for a day tracker unless I do it sideways lol. Anyway. I’m thinking of doing a morning routine other then rush out of bed get ready rush too work. Though for me the hardest is to get by body to Unstiffen early enough to do much. I get up at 6 to make it to work by 8am. So I’m thinking if I just start 10 mins earlier then encrease each month. See how that does on my body. I’m adding Miricle Morning to my reading list too! Thank you so much for all the encouragement and helpful ideas!

  • Katie Weiss

    Love this! The Miracle Morning is on my short term to-read list. But where in this morning routine do you fit in getting your daughter up, fed, and ready for school? I have a 5yo and a 2yo and I can’t even imagine such a zen, peaceful morning routine. Even if I woke up at 6…

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  • Jennifer Dubay

    Help Kara!! Or anyone. I started the Miracle Morning on 2/1 and I am loving having all this time in the morning to clear my head, set my intentions, and gear up to be productive. Couples with reading the 7 Habits I have been on fire this month. My downfall however has been in my eating habits. I am like an endless pit with wanting to eat. It’s not all hunger, though some of it is. I have just gone threw a transformation in the last 18 months of losing weight (105 lbs) and starting an active lifestyle. But my old eating habits are now beginning to creep back in. In order to fit the miracle morning into my schedule I am waking up between 4-4:30. I have to be to work around 6:30 where I finish my routine with my gratitude journal. Then start work at 7. I think getting up so early is kicking my hunger into overdrive. I end up making bad choices on my way to work that carry over throughout the day. Any suggestions on how I can get ahold of this?/ does anyone else have this problem? Any suggestion is appreciated. Thank you.

    • Hi Jennifer! I think the biggest thing that helped me food-wise was preparation. Having a plan for what I will eat throughout the day, having snacks portioned out ahead of time, etc. Hope that helps!

  • Amber Kristen Clark

    Because of this post, I just turned my extra Moleskine into a Miracle Morning journal. I have my routine laid out on the first page followed by affirmations, several pages of inspirational pictures for visualization, and finally a list of personal development books to read. The rest of the pages will be my personal journal to write in every day.

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  • Elizabeth Schley

    I found one of your yoga routines this morning (on Day Two of Miracle Morning) and then ran into your blog. This was awesome! Thank you for sharing your morning, especially that everyday is a bit different.

  • Elsie

    Hi Kara! I was wondering how long this takes all in all? Also when do you have breakfast/get dressed?

    • Angel

      She probably gets dressed after showering and she says she has breakfast while reading.

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  • kristea

    I had to laugh at your affirmations section. I am a birth doula and recently wrote on the comfort measure of using affirmations in labor. I actually embedded a Stuart Smalley clip in my blog post. LOL

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  • Ann Moore

    Hi Kara! I just wanted to say how much I love your site and all you have to offer! I came across bullet journaling on Facebook and am totally addicted. By looking at your site and your YouTube page, I then picked up the Miracle Morning and I’m so inspired! All of this is really inspiring me and making me feel so positive when I was kind of stuck. Anyway, I just wanted to thank you.

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  • EverythingIsNerdiful

    Great post! I became a blogger/stay at home wife last year and STILL haven’t managed to get a good routine going. I’m hoping something like this will allow me to spend time on me and be productive with the rest of the day. Thanks for sharing!

  • Angie Caldwell

    Wow! That blows my mind. I’ll have to think on all that for a bit, but I can see how this would be beneficial and help you look forward to your mornings.

  • Carly Vega

    I would have to wake up at 5am! However … I am excited to start this! <3 I just finished Shonda Rhimes 'Year of Yes' … next is Big Magic! <3 Thank you for this post!