Starting your day off right is more important than you think.

Many of us might not be a morning person – however, it is still crucial to wake up on the right side of the bed, as it affects you for the rest of the day.

study has found that people who started the day feeling happy and calm “usually stayed that way throughout the day”, while people who began the day in a bad mood would not “really climb out of it, and felt even worse by the end of the day”.

So how can you get into a positive morning mood?

There are some practical ideas. Stretching your body after waking up can help improve circulation and ease tight muscles to reduce stress.

What about after you step out of the house? One of the study’s co-authors, Nancy Rothbard recommended creating “intentional transition” when you are heading from one place to another. This may include taking a different route to the one you are used to, making a coffee stop, listening to “inspiring” music or just taking a deep breath before walking in to prepare yourself.

Other studies have also shown that simple activities like going on a short walk in the park or chatting with a loved one could help boost positive emotions.

Watching people laugh also works. A 2017 study found that “contagious social laughter” helps release endorphins, which promotes positive feelings and social bonding as well as reduces stress and perception of pain.

What’s your favourite way to start the day? 

This article originally appeared on Over60.