How a Tech-Free Morning Can Boost Your Productivity and Mental Health

Tech-free morning
Take a break from screens in the morning for a transformative impact on your day. Prioritize self-care and productivity and see how it can improve your mental health and well-being. Here’s why you should start the day without technology.

Do you reach for your smartphone as soon as you wake up and start scrolling? In this fast-paced modern world, it’s second nature to reach for a smartphone first thing. Yet the constant urge to stay connected and consume information can unwittingly make you less productive and throw your mental equilibrium off. Instead, try this. Start the morning tech-free!  Let’s discover the benefits of doing so.

More Time for Personal Growth

Setting aside a portion of your morning to disconnect from all things digital can be a game-changer. This precious tech-free time allows you to engage in self-care before the daily distractions set in. It’s extra “me” time and a chance to do the things that are good for your well-being and those you never have a chance to do because you’re so glued to your phone.

Use the time wisely! Engage in activities like meditation, physical exercise, reading, or simply savor a steaming cup of coffee without the incessant pings of notifications. Such moments increase awareness, reduce stress, and stimulate creativity. And they can help you perform better in all aspects of your life. You can use the time you spend flipping through social media in the morning to engage in activities that nourish your mind and body.

Improvements in Well-Being

How often do you stop to notice the beauty of the world around you? Stepping away from screens, even if it’s just for a short break, can work wonders for your mental outlook and well-being. It gives your eyes and mind a chance to rest and reconnect with your physical surroundings.

When you distance yourself from screens, if only momentarily, your eyes, accustomed to the intense glare of screens, get to unwind and recalibrate. Plus, you liberate your mind from the non-stop barrage of notifications and diversions. You get much-needed breathing space.

During this tech-free time, you rediscover the delight of being fully present and aware. The world around you bursts forth with vibrant colors, subtle melodies, and intricate nuances that you don’t notice in the frenetic pace of the digital world. It’s akin to a homecoming to your authentic self, an opportunity to reconnect with the sights, sounds, and sensations that give life richness.

So, even amidst the relentless hustle and bustle of modern life, a break from screens is an oasis. It’s a chance to nourish your well-being and rediscover the profound beauty that surrounds you. You’re a happier person when you’re aware of these things.

Set a Mindful Tone

Rather than awakening to the harsh glow of a smartphone screen, begin the day with a few minutes of meditation and gentle stretching. Then look out the window and notice things you haven’t focused on before —the sound of a robin singing outside your window and the aroma of freshly brewed coffee. By beginning the day this way, you lay the foundation for a more contemplative and mindful day ahead. Plus, research shows focusing too much on technology reduces the time we spend with other human beings. Such isolation can harm emotional and social well-being.

Prioritize Tasks

A tech-free morning gives you a chance to start the day with intention. Rather than flipping through the news and laughing at corny memes, you can plan your day and set priorities. Starting the day with a refreshed mind and a definite sense of direction will give you newfound energy and focus. Imagine how much less stressful your day will be when you plan it ahead of time.

Setting intention can extend beyond planning and organization. It could be as fundamental as “I intend to be kind today” or more specific, such as “I’m focusing on that project I’ve been postponing.” Setting an intention gives you a compass and keeps you on course and motivated throughout the day. So, put down your smartphone, take a few deliberate breaths, and set an intention.

Tips for Starting the Day Tech-Free

So, how can you embark on the journey of integrating a tech-free morning routine into your life?

  • Establish a consistent wake-up time, which helps regulate your sleep patterns and instills a sense of structure.
  • Opt for a wake-up time that aligns with your preferences and stick to it.
  • Keep your phone away from your bed, so you don’t reach for it when you wake up.
  • Savor a healthy breakfast without the distraction of screens, so you can engage in mindful eating.
  • Designate a specific area where you can comfortably start your day without the distraction of technology.
  • Don’t be afraid to take a “digital detox,” and spend an entire day away from your phone and other devices. We all need it!

To resist the call of your phone, keep it out of sight. Charge it in another room or deactivate notifications until after you’ve completed your morning ritual. Alternatively, employ a traditional alarm clock to wake you up. Not only will this strategy shield you from smartphone distractions, but it will also help you develop healthier sleep patterns. By forgoing your phone during that initial hour, you’ll notice an uptick in your focus, productivity, and creativity throughout the day. Give it a shot!


Weaving a tech-free morning routine into your daily regimen can positively impact your productivity, creativity, and overall well-being. By devoting time to prioritizing your needs and establishing clear intentions for the day, you’ll be better equipped to confront challenges and extract the most from your day. Why not give yourself the gift of a  purposeful and gratifying morning routine? Set that phone aside and witness the transformative potential it holds for your day!


  • Five Reasons to Take a Break from Screens. Greater Good. Published 2018. Accessed September 2, 2023. https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/five_reasons_to_take_a_break_from_screens
  • Taking a technology break can help your health. Uwhealth.org. Published 2019. Accessed September 2, 2023. https://www.uwhealth.org/news/taking-technology-break-can-help-health
  • Small GW, Lee J, Kaufman A, Jalil J, Siddarth P, Gaddipati H, Moody TD, Bookheimer SY. Brain health consequences of digital technology use
. Dialogues Clin Neurosci. 2020 Jun;22(2):179-187. doi: 10.31887/DCNS.2020.22.2/gsmall. PMID: 32699518; PMCID: PMC7366948.

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