How to upgrade your mornings

This post was sponsored by CLEAR CARE® PLUS as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) guidelines concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising.  I received financial compensation for my participation and endorsement.

We’ve all been there. Stuck in habit of doing the same-old same-old routine, we may think about changing but it usually takes an outside force to get us to do so. Changing the color on your walls or your morning routine doesn’t seem like much, I know. The little things in life can and do make a huge impact on your way of life.

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For me, my personal upgrade was my morning routine. I was never a “morning person” but a few little tweaks made my mornings work for me. Even if you are an up and riser, these little life hacks can upgrade and elevate your mornings!
First morning upgrade: Splurge on yourself! Find, buy or make a grand coffee mug that is special JUST for you and no one else. It will help remind yourself that you are worth it, while you sip your morning coffee (nectar of the gods), tea or juice and give you a little confidence boost first thing in the morning.

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Second morning upgrade: Save yourself some time and sanity by make ahead breakfast meals that you can throw in the microwave or toaster. And you can spend more time on the things you want to get done in the morning. Here are a few ideas that my family uses, and some you can even eat on the go.
1. Breakfast Burritos– Burritos are one of my favorite foods, and I love that you can customize it exactly the way you want. I personally like eggs, breakfast sausage, cheese, bell peppers, and onions, topped off with some fresh cilantro! When reheating wrap in a moist paper towel for best results.
2. Breakfast Sandwiches – Who doesn’t love a breakfast sandwich? And who knew they freeze so well? Just pop them in the microwave and you’re set. You could also make this with croissants!
3. Green Smoothies – Green smoothies are a staple in our house. Our whole family loves them and we make them a couple times a week. It’s so easy to freeze individual portions into ziploc bags so that all you need to add is the liquid and then blend!
4. French Toast Sticks – I used to make these in big batches all the time. I love that you can bake them. They freeze beautifully, and you can reheat them quickly in the toaster or toaster oven. You can even sneak in veggies by blending in some pumpkin or squash into the batter — they’ll never know!
5. Pancakes – Pancakes and waffles also freeze great.
6. Muffins – Make your favorite muffin and pop them into freezer bags. When reheating wrap in a moist paper towel for best results.
7. Egg muffins/Mini Frittatas – These are easy to make and easy to customize with your choice of ingredients — no bread needed!
8. Breakfast cookies – Everything tastes better when it’s in cookie form. Oat cookies work amazing!
9. Pop tarts – You can make your own healthy pop tarts with puff pastry or premade dough. Reheat them in the microwave or toaster oven and you have a quick, easy breakfast your kids are sure to love!

& Don’t forget to pre-set your coffee maker so it’s ready when you are!
Third morning upgrade: Save the morning for thinking. The morning tends to have a quieter, more contemplative feel to it. Take advantage of it, by following poet William Blake’s advice to divide up your day: “Think in the morning, act in the noon, read in the evening, and sleep at night.” Even if your job isn’t complex, you can use the mornings where you’re not on a tight deadline to think over problems, consider future challenges, and give your tasks more mindful attention than they’ll get when everyone else gets in and starts grabbing for your attention.
Fourth morning upgrade: Set a morning prep reminder the night before. Whether it’s your watch or your cell phone set something in your home to beep at a certain time every night. When that beep goes off, around 9 p.m., for instance, it means you should drop what you’re doing and spend just a bit of time preparing for your morning, while you’re actually awake. Take the time to set out your clothes and shoes, grind coffee and set your coffee timer, check your calendar for events and reminders, and packing anything you’re bound to forget into your bag.

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