“Our life is shaped by our mind, for we become what we think.” - Buddha
The way that you start your day can determine how the rest of it unfolds. Getting up in the morning can be challenging, and finding ways to get motivated and excited for the hours ahead isn’t always easy. If this resonates with you, know that it’s completely normal and you're not alone. But there are ways to change the way you feel for the better. One of the most effective ways to bring the right energy into your morning routine for a calm, happy, and flowing day is through mindfulness.
What Is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is a quality of awareness that recognizes the present moment, including thoughts, feelings, sensations, and perceptions. It brings us back to the present moment, as opposed to being stuck in thought loops about the past or the future. This calming awareness is a way to stay engaged in the here and now, as the grand observer, watching your thoughts and actions through neutral observation and releasing all anxiety, judgment, or criticism.
Bringing mindfulness into your morning routine can change your life. It can gently shift and lovingly adjust the way you think, feel, behave, view the world, and what you attract into your life. Mindfulness can assist in boosting your energy levels, minimize anxiety and depression, and help you feel centered and strong. It can also assist you in attracting more of what you truly want and need, enhance your positivity and creativity, increase your productivity, and bring your emotional reactivity down. All of this helps you to function from a place of wisdom rather than fear. It changes the way you make decisions and can actively shift the way your brain functions. This, in turn, can have a hugely positive effect on your memory, focus, and concentration.
There are so many different ways of introducing mindfulness into your morning routine, it is important to follow the routine that feels right for your needs. But for now, here are some suggestions on how to get started:
Get Enough Quality Sleep
First and foremost, it’s vital to allow yourself to get good quality sleep. The ability to allow mindfulness and conscious intention into our morning routines starts before you even get out of bed, by valuing your sleep. If you don’t have a strong foundation of healthy sleep, then it becomes very challenging to cultivate a mindful morning ritual.
Wake Up Early
Waking up earlier to incorporate a more mindful morning routine is a great way to move slowly through your morning ritual. Rushing is the opposite of being mindful. So, even though sometimes we feel like we could use those extra 30 minutes of shut-eye, sticking to your mindfulness ritual instead may bring you more energy and happiness throughout your day. Taking it slow as you prepare for the day puts you in a healthy and healing mindset for the day ahead. If you don't wake up early enough it's easy to get into a frantic, rushed state. You’ll take this frenetic feeling into the rest of your day, affecting everything you do.
Journaling is a healthy way for us to bring awareness to how we’re feeling and what emotional state we’re in. It’s a great way to start the day because it allows us to check in with ourselves, and write about anything we’re going through. If you’re experiencing emotional turmoil or going through a difficult time, getting it out on paper is hugely healing. Journaling is also a wonderful way to set intentions or goals for the day or to create a gratitude list.
Practicing mindfulness through movement is a hugely powerful practice. This brings awareness to our bodies, breath, muscles, joints, posture, and any tension we might be holding on to. Everyone has a type of exercise that they love, whether it's yoga, running, walking, or anything else. Ensure that you exercise every morning and bring body awareness into your exercise routine. Doing any form of exercise, especially combined with conscious breath work, will have a hugely positive effect on your mood by releasing feel-good hormones. Start Stretching If exercise isn’t an option due to time, location, or physical restraints, then consider adding 10 minutes of stretching to your morning routine. It will help to wake up your muscles and get you in tune with how your body is feeling. Combine calming stretching with deep breathing and tuning into your body while you stretch. This awareness can carry you through the rest of your day.
If you are not used to meditating, don’t be afraid to try it. It may seem a bit daunting, but starting small and slow is the best way to introduce yourself to this incredibly healing practice. It’s such a fantastic way to bring awareness to your body, mind, heart, and emotional state. It’s super helpful in dealing with anxiety disorders, stress, and calming the nervous system. You don't have to jump into meditation for an hour a day if you aren't ready. Just taking 5 minutes in the morning to close your eyes, connect inwards, bring in some conscious breathing, and find a place of peace within yourself is all it takes to change your day.
Prepare a Healthy Breakfast
Starting the day with a nutritional breakfast full of vitamins and minerals that help you to be the most productive version of yourself is crucial. Your body needs fuel to function, and putting the right food into your body first thing in the morning is a great way to bring mindfulness into your morning. Practice mindful eating by closing your eyes and enjoying each bite. Bring your awareness to the different flavors, textures, and tastes.
Make Every Morning Mindful
Mindfulness is such a simple way of empowering yourself to create the day and life you want to lead. You can start by making small changes and work your way up to bigger ones as you go. Bringing a simple shift in your awareness, not rushing, and prioritizing your physical, mental, and emotional health are all wonderful ways to begin incorporating mindfulness into your morning ritual. Once you start doing this, the possibilities are endless.
By Donna Jefferson
Donna Jefferson is a writer, editor, and health and wellness enthusiast. Donna leads a fairly active lifestyle, and enjoys sweating it out at the gym or going on hikes with friends during her free time.
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