"Each morning we are born again. What we do today is what matters the most." -Buddha
We all know that mornings aren't always the most pleasant time of the day. Especially, these dreadful Monday mornings. For me, the hardest part is forcing myself to get out of bed when my alarm clock goes off instead of hitting the snooze button a time or two. In my high school and college days I was very much a night owl, dreading the sound of my alarm clock so much that sometimes I had to set 2 or 3 just to make sure I eventually woke up. But, as I have gotten older I have become more of a morning person. I actually appreciate rising with the sun and starting my day at a slower pace.
Since becoming self-employed, I have become more mindful of how I spend my mornings and have made an effort to say good-bye to the snooze button and create a habit of getting up by 7:15 AM everyday. It is amazing what I can get accomplished before the clock even hits noon! Aside from the productivity, my favorite part of waking up early is the time I have to really welcome the day. Instead of rushing to get ready in the morning (because I decided I just HAD to have those few more pointless minutes of sleep), I can now allow myself to get ready with ease without checking my clock every 5 minutes to make sure I am not running late.
When I started to get the hang of waking up, I decided the next step was to create a morning routine to hold myself accountable to the 7:15 AM alarm clock. My typical morning routine consist of a few puppy cuddles with Lucy before rolling out of bed to make my first cup of coffee (our Ninja Coffee Maker makes the best homemade cold brew, highly recommend!). Then, Lucy and I walk to the dog park for a few rounds of fetch before I head to the yoga studio to spend some time on my mat. Finally, I take my morning shower and eat some breakfast. Then it's time to head out the door to conquer the day feeling energized and accomplished.
Let me tell ya - since starting this routine I feel AHHH-MAZING!
Now, that I have become one of those cheerful morning people and experienced such a significance change in the quality of my day I want to share some tips with you on how to mindfully conquer the early mornings.
HYDRATE, HYDRATE, HYDRATE
Before enjoying that coffee you desperately need/want, make yourself a large glass of water with some fresh squeezed lemon. Not only will this get your digestive system kicking into gear, but it will also hydrate you.
Now, it's time for the COFFEE
If you're anything like me, your day does not start until you've had your cup of coffee. The delicious taste and caffeine are not the only reasons to drink coffee because the smell of freshly brewed coffee is equally appealing.
Stretch it out.
Our muscles are naturally tight in the morning, but sometimes it is hard to have time to get on your mat and stretch it out. I recommend just taking a few moments in mountain pose, forward fold, childs pose, and bridge pose. It's amazing what just a few breaths in these poses can do for your body in the morning.
Write your thoughts in a journal.
Okay, I am not going to try to hide the fact that I struggle with keeping this habit. Sometimes I am on a roll and journaling everyday and other times it will be weeks before I pick my journal back up. But, it's a great way to organize your thoughts in the morning and set intentions for the day. I personally am going to work at being more consistent with journaling!
Take a morning yoga or meditation class.
There is nothing I love more than an early morning yoga class. It is my favorite way to start the day! I always leave class feeling energized and more grounded. I also use my practice as a way to dedicate time to focus on myself.
Eat a healthy breakfast.
There is a reason they say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day! A healthy breakfast gives you energy for the day, fires up your metabolism, increases your focus, and helps prevent you from overeating throughout the day. Try to avoid sugary breakfast!
Enjoy a refreshing shower.
As a New Yorker, I refuse to go to bed without showering at night, but I also need shower in the morning to help wake myself up. Whether you enjoy your showers hot or cold, there is something so refreshing about an early morning rinse.
I hope that these tips help you to kick that habit of hitting snooze to the curb and encourage you to jump start your day in mindful, productive manner. You got this!