5 ideas to freshen up your morning routine

Just as January sets the tone for the year, your morning sets the tone for the day. Here are 5 small decisions you can make to start the day well.

#1 | Prepare ahead

Have you noticed the difference between the decisions you make when you act in the moment and the ones you make when you plan ahead? There’s a great TED Talk by Daniel Goldstein about willpower – simply the ability to think long-term rather than go for short-term pleasures. It’s something we do easily when think about the future, and not so much in the present. Applied to your morning routine, making some overnight oats or having toast and cereal at the ready can stop you making hasty decisions when you’re in a rush. Avoiding those breakfast bars and ready-meal porridge pots is a great thing – for the environment, your wallet and your health.

#2 | Make your own

Most creams, cleansers and make up are costly, come in plastic packaging and have indecipherable ingredients lists. Making your own versions can be surprisingly simple and fun for a lazy weekend. Most homemade skincare doesn’t contain preservatives, which means that the scents are fresher and bring you closer to the base ingredients Each morning after, you’ll find pleasure in what you’ve made. If you'd like to try, here's a fun recipe by Going Zero Waste on how to make your own eyeliner and mascara.

#3 | Keep your bathroom plastic free

We talked about this in November with soap bars. A next step you can make is to switch to a

plastic-free toothpaste. Our favourites without fluoride are by Green Wyse or, if you’d like to stick with fluoride, Denttabs look great. And, if you’d like toilet paper without plastic wrap, lots of you have recommended Who Gives A Crap who also help to build loos in the developing world.

#4 | Waste less

This can be as simple as only leaving the tap on to wet your toothbrush, or consciously

having a shorter shower in the morning. Only boil the water you need for your hot drinks

and pour any excess into a thermos to bring out with you on your day. Old coffee grounds are worth keeping. Spread them to fertilise garden soil and they’ll deter slugs. Or mix with coconut oil to make a face scrub/mask for weekend mornings.

#5 | Green travel

If you don’t live too far from work, resist the urge to drive. Car emissions are the largest contributor to global warming and to the air pollution we suffer from in the UK and globally. Walk if you can or bicycle. With care, learning to cycle on the road is a great idea – it’s faster than a car in congested inner cities. Visit Sustrans to find your local cycle routes.

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