How do you wake up in the morning?
Is it begrudgingly, hitting snooze as many times as possible before you have to literally force yourself out of bed with sheer will? Do you wake up most of the time clear-minded and excited for the day?
This morning, with birds chirping and newly sprouting plants surrounding me, I am really aware of the morning routines I have designed and how they affect my well being. This is an enormous subject, but if you are struggling to wake up every day, you might find some thing to spark your own morning love affair starting now!
Bob, my puppy, has his morning routine. While it suits him for the season to chase the window sun around the house as soon as he wakes up and then sneak- literally- into my bed to hide when I wake up, even he changes his morning routine seasonally. Winters, he’ll be walking on top of me to feed him at 5:30 in the morning. Part of the reason why is that my own habits change seasonally, when I feel the need in Winter to be up at dawn or earlier to see as much light as possible and feel more solitude, too.
The people in your life can influence your sleep cycle and your mornings. I used to wake up with dread as my Blackberry (this was years ago!) beeped with messages that penetrated my early morning sleep, emails of work to do, huge things that were possibly impossible. That was a function of the environment filled with the ethos of work stress as the thought that dominated their lives.
If you have stressful friends, a tense relationship with a loved-one or a family issue looming in your life, it can make your sleep far less restful. I know plenty of families with newborns who, while not in love with the amount of sleep they get at night, are faring well with rest because they have internal harmony in their family.
Is there a social component to your sleeplessness or your dread of the morning?
Having things to look forward to in the morning makes jumping out of bed far more enticing.
Even when I had no idea what I was doing with my professional life, when I committed to a morning routine of self-love, everything in the day became far more full of sizzle and excitement. Hiking up into the Hollywood Hills at sunrise, making breakfasts that I craved, having a book I wanted to read before work… even outfits I was excited to wear… all made the morning more of a joy and less of a burden.
If your days feel burdensome and bed feels like a safe-haven, this is a major red flag that a life change is in order!
A little visualization can turn your days into something more heavenly.
The very strangely named Silva Mind Conrol Method book has been a real game-changer for me in visualization before I get out of bed. One of the cooler things I learned from this book is that the early morning is when your mind is in a deeply suggestible state of brain activity. You can use this impressionable mind state as a time to “program” gorgeous events at will, or you can allow it to be polluted with stress and dread that can seep in automatically, making life even more overwhelming. If I have trouble counting from 100 to 0 in the morning (one of the exercises) and then seeing my day unfold in pictures the way I want it to unfold with my eyes closed, I know that there are things in my life that need to be handled.
I use my journal as a place to visualize when my focus is off-kilter and I have a hard time visualizing great things in the morning. Writing a few pages by hand, pen to paper, in the morning can help me to see what ideas are cluttering my space to envision awesome outcomes in a day.
My own power morning routine is my Buddhist practice in the morning, You don’t want to see me on the rare day that I miss a morning and put this off until later in the day! People in my like look at me and say “go chant.” That’s the transformative morning routine effects speaking loud and clear to me.
What you see in the morning when you wake up influences your life.
If you are waking up to broken things, unfinished bedroom decor, a huge mess of clutter, horrible neighbor noise or anything else that penetrates your senses in an way that is less-than-great, you have a clue of what to change first to create a more amazing day! What you see in the morning should not be a problem… nor should it be your cell phone or your television. Art, a great view, beautiful decor, clean space, people and animals you love— these are the things you want to wake up to every day.
Your morning routine is as amazing as you decide it will be. I know many people with simple lives who have elaborately expansive morning routines that flood their days with joy. I also know people who push themselves to a breaking point in life that find their mornings to be sacred times, not to be violated or ignored.
The morning is the pace-setter for life. If your first hour…or even 30 minutes… awake is anything less than a meditative time of feeling your way into an exciting day, you now have many ideas to making that shift toward a life that you love even more!
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