May 4, 2017

5 Rituals For A Better Morning

Just 5 more minutes … 5 minutes turns to 10, which then turns to 20 and the next thing you know, you're running out the door with only one shoe on because you're running late. I was definitely a night owl in my early 20s and have had that same experience one too many times. Most of us wish we can rise to the sound of birds chirping, but let's be real - we are waaay too attached to our bed. Once I reaped the benefits of becoming an early riser, my days started to feel more productive and longer! Here's my list of 5 rituals to get you started on your road to a better morning :)

1. Wake up every day around the same time. I schedule myself to wake up every weekday morning at 6 am. Starting your day at the same time gets your body used to a certain routine; after a while your body will start to wake up naturally around that time. HOW you wake up is just as important. You're insane if you think anyone who hears that annoying alarm beep wakes up giddy and ready to conquer the world. No - they wake up irritated and wishing they could go back to the dreamiest of dreams where Leonardo DiCaprio is waiting on the beach with margaritas in hand. To save yourself the pain, opt for a low, subtle repetitive sound or song about 5 minutes prior to your actual wake up time. Your body will hear it and will slowly wake itself up from that deep sleep. Allowing your body to gradually awaken and regain consciousness will leave you less tired in the morning.

2. Drink plenty of water. You probably didn't realize you just went 6 - 8 hours without eating or drinking anything. The first thing I do after scooting my butt out of bed is down a full cup of cold water. Fluids help to rehydrate the body, flush out any toxins and stimulate your mind to start working. Even as an early bird I'm still half asleep waddling to the kitchen, however after that drink I'm alert and ready to begin my day. 

3. Eat breakfast and plan out your day. Alright, so eating breakfast is too obvious so let me talk about everything but that. I find it very important to crack open my planner every morning to see what I have planned for the day. I am a bullet-journal type of gal which allows me get organized on what I need to do. If you're unfamiliar with bullet journaling, I suggest you check it out here to see what it's all about. This has helped me to get a clear understanding of how my whole day will look like. On top of writing down tasks, meetings, etc, I also have a section where I jot down one thing that I am grateful for that day. It can be anything like having your family around to something small like being able to breathe fresh air. Doing this honestly helps to put everything into perspective and to enjoy life with a more positive vibe.

4. Get your body moving. Not everyone's favorite thing to do, but it is crucial nonetheless. I used to exercise at night after work because it seemed the most convenient at the time, but after changing my workout schedule to the morning, life became 100x better. Not only does working out get your body energized but it's also one less thing off your to-do list. We all need to hit the gym, but often dread the thought of it after a long day at work. I usually forget that I already exercised in the morning so when I realize that it's crossed off my list for the day, nothing but satisfaction fills my body!

5. Meditate and pray. One of my favorite parts of the day - meditation. Everyone meditates differently, so for me this is what my practice looks like: I sit legs crossed, my selected gemstone for the week cupped in my hands, and body grounded outside with nothing but the birds talking and trees rustling. From there I usually just focus on prayers / deep thoughts, send praises to the Father or just draw a blank and bring attention to my breath. I do this right after I finish my intense workout so it helps a ton to calm me down and allows me to just enjoy being in the midst of nature. I look at this as the most important aspect for a better morning. Some may disregard this and say there's no time to fit meditating in a busy schedule. However I've caught myself spending 20 minutes easily watching Youtube videos, so if I'm like most of the population we can all spare 15 minutes out of the 1440 minutes we have in a day.

For me, the greatest thing about finishing meditation is knowing that it's only 8:15 am and most people haven't even pulled themselves out of bed by that time. I find it very satisfying knowing that I am having a productive morning while the world is still asleep. Just to state the obvious, don't forget to squeeze brushing your teeth and washing your face within those 2 hours - didn't think I needed to add that, but sometimes you never know. Keep at it with these routines and you'll be on your way to earning your early bird badge in no time! 


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