I believe in beginnings and endings. Of course I believe in the middle bit too, but I believe the way you begin something and the way you end something can say a lot about what you fill the inside with. One day I will talk to you about endings and the middle parts, but today, I am going to talk about beginnings.
I believe the beginning of anything is important. The beginnings always set the tone for what is to follow. I believe in the first day of the new year. I believe in making the first words you speak to a loved one positive. I believe that how you approach an contentious topic with your partner reveals a lot about how you will walk away from it when the argument has simmered. I believe in the first day of school and first dates.
How do you begin your day? Do you stumble out of bed and stumble into your life? Do you wake up and feel the impending sense of whether it’s going to be a “good day” or a “bad day” before your feet have even hit the floor?
How you spend the first half an hour of consciousness after you wake up to your brand new day, really sets the energy for how the rest of your day will flow. Start your day off right.
Whether you are a self proclaimed “morning person” or not, joyful morning routines are as important as a joyful day.
When you wake up, wake up.
1. Don’t rush
Give yourself time to open up. Don’t lose your mornings by rushing through them. Wake up earlier if you have to. Even 15 minutes earlier can make a difference. 30 minutes can make a bigger difference and so on and so forth.
Sometimes it’s nice to wake up before anybody else. It gives you a little pocket of time for yourself. It’s nice to start the day on your own terms.
2. Take the time to do something you enjoy doing in the morning
Just something. For some it may be a morning jog, journaling, your yoga practice, painting, preparing an exquisitely delicious breakfast, reading the paper, doing a crossword puzzle, reading or just taking some extra time to get ready (picking a nice outfit, doing your hair and make up – and “men stuff” for men because I don’t know what ya’ll do).
I personally love my morning coffee time. Ahhh, I love it. Warm coffee on a cool winter morning, and gentle conversation with my roommate. I always resented having to rush my morning coffee time, before I decided to make my morning routine a priority.
Whatever it is for you, do it! It doesn’t have to take long, maybe even just 15-30 minutes, but enjoy the slowness, the gentleness, and the freshness of being completely present.
3. Set an intention for the day
Every day is different, bringing us a wide array of different priorities and focuses. Some days are “work” days but some days are not. Be flexible. We may have to work from Monday to Friday but that does not necessarily mean that the focus of every monday to friday must be a “work” day. We have different kinds of “work” to work on as well.
When you wake up, and go through your morning routine, take the time to set your intention for the day. What kind of day do you want to have today? A fun day? A relaxed day? A productive day? A cleaning day? A loving day? A happy day? A sociable day? A “Me” day?
Today I am going to have FUN.
Today I am going to be super productive.
Today I am going to connect with lots of people.
Today I am going to treat myself and relax completely.
Set your intention.
5. Review your 3 most important tasks of the day
I like to keep my morning routines more flexible but productive, because that is the kind of energy I feel during my time in the mornings. My evening routines tend to be more rigorous (but more about that another time!).
Of course there are many other productive and joyful things you can do in the morning, but I didn’t want to go into too much detail, and instead let you create a routine for yourself. Let these 5 points be the backbone to your morning routine. Fill it with something fun, peaceful and productive – but don’t for get the fundamentals.
Remember to start your day consciously. That doesn’t necessarily mean that every day is going to be a great day, but it does mean that you will always put yourself in the best position to make the most out of whatever comes your way.
Have a great day!