Commitment to maintaining a consistent, healthy morning routine of exercise and meditation allows you time to wake up naturally. This can offer many benefits, including less stress, greater mental clarity and a positive outlook on your day. Here are 10 easy ways to get yourself the best start possible!
The Importance of a Morning Routine
- Commit to self-care. Taking care of yourself is the most important part of your life, so why not start out by giving a little energy to yourself?
- Allow extra time so you won’t feel rushed heading out the door.
- Grant yourself the opportunity to set goals for the day, thus maximizing your productivity.
- For peace of mind. When you have your head screwed on tight, it makes for a smoother day as events – both planned and unexpected – unfold.
How to Rise an Hour Earlier
- Start going to bed an hour earlier. Set a routine for yourself that you can commit to. For example, if you’re used to going to bed at 11 pm, start to unwind by 9:30 so you can be in bed at 10 pm, setting yourself up to wake up at 6 o’clock instead of 7 am.
- Focus on the sensation that taking your time in the morning will give you. Imagine having a leisurely breakfast and, as a result, feeling less frustrated and frantic during your daily commute.
Stretch for a Happy Body
- After being still for 6–8 hours, your body needs to move to improve circulation and blood flow. Walk around the house for a few minutes, and let your body wake up slowly.
- Drink a large glass of water to improve your internal health.
- Sit down on the floor, and stretch your neck, arms, legs, torso and back – 20 seconds per stretch.
Meditation for a Peaceful Mind
- After getting up from your bed, sit on the floor with your legs crossed in front of you.
- Close your eyes, place your hands (palms facing up) on your knees, and breathe in.
- As thoughts come into your mind, accept them, acknowledge them, and release them.
- Refocus on the breath. Breathe in deeply for a count of three, and breathe out for an equal amount of time.
- If you’re seeking direction or focus, ask a question in line with your goals. Although you may not get the answer right away, recognize that the journey of the day ahead will take you closer to finding it.
Wash Your Face, Brush Your Teeth and Shower – Mindfully
- Don’t let your mind’s thoughts wander. Focus on the routine tasks of your morning while concentrating on the act, rather than speculating about what your day will bring, or worrying about how much you have to accomplish.
- Mindfully brush your teeth, wash your hair, and wash your face by concentrating on the act of these tasks. (You’ll feel happier by staying in the moment.)
Write Your Intention for the Day Ahead
- Take out a piece of paper and a pen, and set a timer for two minutes.
- Spend the next several minutes doing automatic or stream-of-conscious writing. Jot down whatever comes to mind about your intention for the day without worrying about sentence structure, or even giving a second thought to what’s attainable and what’s not.
- Look at your paper after the two minutes are up, and focus on the goals you’ve laid out for yourself.
Do 30 Minutes of Cardio (Release Those Endorphins!)
- Walk, run, skip, jump rope or dance for a half hour. This will release your endorphins, which will make you happier, more productive and with an increased clarity for the rest of your day.
- Studies show that exercising in the morning will set the bar for the healthier pattern you’ll continue throughout your day.
Drink a Green Smoothie (Packed with Superfoods!)
- Put nutrition into your body first thing in the morning, and rev up your metabolism and brain power for the rest of the day!
- Blend up fresh fruits and veggies. For example, try a smoothie with apples, oranges, ginger, spinach, chlorella, mangos and apple juice.
Load Up on Protein
- Protein helps repair muscle mass, improves brain function and keeps you full, thus preventing overeating throughout your morning.
- Start each morning with a serving of eggs, Greek yogurt, low-fat cheese, peanut or almond butter, seeds or beans. If you’re having a smoothie, be sure to add in a scoop of your favorite protein powder.
Sit, Breathe and Be Still for Five Minutes
- Start each morning breathing mindfully and deeply – it will make you more alert, clear headed and positive.
- If waking up already stressed out, you can calm your nerves by sitting still. Don’t move, and focus on nothing but your breath. Do this for up to 20 minutes to set yourself up for success.
Read (And Re-Read) Your Affirmations
- Review your positive statements of intention.
- Post affirmations on your dresser, bathroom mirror, fridge door or steering wheel to help you regularly refocus on what you want to achieve, feel or become.
Visualize Your Day Going Effortlessly and Successfully
- For a busy day of tasks you want to accomplish effortlessly, review each significant part in your mind. Walk through your upcoming meeting, big presentation or date, focusing on positive moments.
- Watch the events of your day play out in your imagination as if your life were a movie – what you believe in your mind will help set the pieces in place within your reality.
The Bottom Line . . .
Affirmations, exercise and visualization are all part of a healthy morning routine, and these positive efforts will support a peaceful and stress-free body and mind for your great day ahead. Develop your own ideal morning – a comfortable, dependable schedule that will help you to feel productive, alert and at peace with yourself to generate good vibes that will last all day long!