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How to Keep A Morning Routine While Traveling

How to Keep A Morning Routine While Traveling

How to Keep A Morning Routine While Traveling
Those of you that know me personally know that I feel most comfortable when I am sticking to a routine. I've found that keeping my life organized and structured really when I get overloaded with work or life. Specifically, it helps to manage my anxiety I may have about upcoming deadlines or how I am going to get my work done. I am especially fond of my morning routine that I do each and every day. It really helps me to set the mood and tone of my day while also allowing me a little time to check in with myself.

It is easy, however, to drop my morning routine when I'm traveling due to a number of reasons: jet-lag, the excitement of a new place, different time commitments and meetings (when traveling for work), etc. I've found, however, that keeping my morning routine while traveling is so important for me since I can get pretty anxious about travel details.

Here are my 5 tips for keeping a morning routine while traveling.
Note: I need a morning routine to start my day off right. But I know a lot of people are more comfortable with an evening routine. The points still hold regardless of how you apply them :)

5 Tips for Keeping A Morning Routine When Traveling

1. Create Your Ideal Morning Routine

Research shows that most people, but not all, are more productive in the morning. I feel like I am not only more productive but also more motivated in the AM. My normal morning routine includes things like planning out my day (by hour and task), checking email and messages using the 2 Minute Rule, reflection time to gather my thoughts on the day, drinking something hot (usually coffee, tea, or hot water with lemon), and light stretching.
Keeping A Morning Routine While Traveling

2. Write it down

When I first came up with my morning routine, I wrote it down in my favorite planner, the Day Designer (you can see my review here). My Day Designer is the first thing I reach for in the morning so it makes sense to keep a short list of my morning routine in there. As much as I love the planner, it is too big to take with me when I'm traveling. Instead, I take a small notebook with me and write down my morning routine on the first fresh page.
The Day Designer: Opening Pages

3. Be realistic

As much as I love sticking to my routine, I also realize that it isn't realistic to think that I'm going to hold to it 100% when traveling. First, an inability to be flexible on my part could really hinder experiencing something new. For example, we had to be picked up for our Great White Shark cage diving experience at 5am – no way was I going to stick to my routine that morning (I think I probably rolled out of bed around 4:50am). You're not going to get everything done, and that's okay. But if you get anxious like me, take some time with the next step:

4. Prioritize

What parts of your morning routine are most important for you and why? Are there ways that you can combine some elements to make things easier for you when you're on the go? I, for example, know that I need 3 things every morning: (1) time to review my upcoming day, (2) a chance to mentally check-in with myself about how I'm feeling about the day, and (3) a warm drink (or iced, if the temperature is above 80. Because all three of these are so important to me, I've found that I can easily combine them when I'm on the move. Finding high-quality beverages, however, can be tricky depending on where you're traveling.
Keeping A Morning Routine While Traveling
When the Mr. and I moved to South Africa we were surprised to find that the grocery stores in our neighborhood ONLY sold instant coffee (as I mentioned in one of my first blog posts). We weren't familiar with using instant coffee but we began to really like and continued to buy it when we moved back to the States.

That's why I was honestly so excited when NESCAFÉ® Taster’s Choice® contacted me to take the Taster's Choice Challenge. The challenge involved switching out our typical coffee routine with the NESCAFÉ® Taster’s Choice® instant stick packs. The challenge came at the perfect time since I spent 3 days of this week traveling for work. These cute packets, filled with 1.7oz of well-crated coffee granules that make 8oz of coffee, make sticking to my morning routine super simple and consistent. I just packed 4 of the stick packs in my carry one and BOOM – I wasn't forced to drink hotel coffee (which is always, ALWAYS the worst – am I the only person that HATES coffee pods?).
My favorite thing about the NESCAFÉ® Taster’s Choice® stick packs was that it was easy for me to make either hot or iced coffee depending on the weather in Los Angeles. I might be living under a rock but until the challenge, I had no idea how to make iced coffee from instant packets. In case you're as ignorant as I was, here is how to do it.

Iced Coffee Recipe

Makes 1 serving

– 1 tbsp. NESCAFÉ® Taster’s Choice® House Blend (or one packet)
– 2 tbsp. hot water
– 1 cup cold water
– milk (I use almond milk) and/or sugar to taste

Combine the coffee granules and hot water and stir until the coffee as dissolves. Add ice, cold water, and milk/sugar to taste and stir it up.

That's it! A super easy way to make iced coffee in less than 2 minutes.
Keeping a Morning Routine While Traveling
These packets are also really helpful if you plan on going camping and don't want to lug around a big jar of instant coffee.

Because I started the challenge when I was at home, The NESCAFÉ® Taster’s Choice® packets helped add a little consistency to my morning routine while I was traveling for work. If you think that adding instant coffee might help you stick to your routine when traveling, make sure to check out the 6 flavors of NESCAFÉ® Taster’s Choice®!

5. Reassess

Establishing my travel morning routine took a little time to do. Every time I leave I reassess my routine and make sure that it still works for me. For a while, I was trying to include stretching into my morning routine but realized it wasn't realistic to expect myself to do it when I'm not home.

Do you have a morning routine? If so, how do you stick to it when traveling?

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Nicole is a treasure hunter and pup mama located in Seattle, Washington. Loves travel, politics, lifestyle, TV, & wine. She's an unapologetic SJW & feminist AF.

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  1. Jamie | ink + adventure
    1 year ago

    my morning routine involves coffee and 3 pages of free writing/journaling. I was really proud when I kept up with my morning pages while we traveled trough Europe this summer – though there were a handful of exceptions for early wakeups and travel days. I usually bring instant coffee with me when traveling as well, since I am not fit for conversation until I’ve had my cup!

    1. Runwright
      1 year ago

      3 pages of journaling. I’d like to adopt this idea to have a planned amount to write. It’s happening this month with NaNoWriMo for sure but it would be a good idea to carry on a page count into my normal writing habits.

  2. Macy Volpe
    1 year ago

    I love this list! It’s really hard for me to keep a routine while traveling, which makes no sense with my planner personality, but I always feel like I need to give myself a break while we are away. My brain is running on 110 most of the time so it feels nice, BUT when we get home it’s harder to readjust. I am going to use these tips next trip we take. Thank you for sharing!

  3. Setarra
    1 year ago

    My morning routine involves waking up at 6am, doing a 30 minute workout in my living room and cooking breakfast before getting ready for work. Also, getting my clothes picked the night before helps to make me feel less rushed in the morning as well. I only need my mat and ipad to stream my workout so I’m hoping I’m able to maintain at least that part of my routine when I leave for my next trip in a couple weeks. More than likely I’ll be eating out most of the time so making breakfast won’t work but the airbnb I’m staying at does have a kitchen so we shall see. Great tips!

  4. Suze @LuxuryColumnist
    1 year ago

    I do find that a coffee helps me to wake up in the morning. I like to fit in a bit of exercise before starting my day too

    Suze | LuxuryColumnist

  5. Runwright
    1 year ago

    I do have a morning routine. I wake up, meditate, do a devotion and try to get a little exercise in, even if it’s just stretches in front of my bed. I like to write something early in the morning and if I have my clothes and food pre-planned, it gives me more time to do that.
    when I travel, my routine goes to naught though :-)

  6. Annie Montgomery
    1 year ago

    we’ve gotten used to instant coffee after moving abroad too! first thing i do when i wake up!!