Easy Morning Routines to Start Your Day More Relaxed

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Breakfast

Do you ever find yourself hitting the snooze button a few times, waking up late and running out the door without eating breakfast?

For many of us, mornings can sometimes be rushed, frantic and start way too early.

If you start your day rushing and racing against the clock, you are starting your day in “Fight or Flight”, flooding your body with stress hormones which take a toll on your body, mind and spirit and leave you feeling overwhelmed, anxious and exhausted. If you start your day in this state, you are much more likely to feel stressed all day long.

But, if you start your day with just a few minutes of self-care and relaxation, you are activating “Rest and Digest”, the part of your nervous system that turns on the relaxation response in your body. If you can start your day in this state, you will carry that calm, positive energy throughout your entire day. And it will even help you be more productive!

That sounds a lot better, doesn’t it?

I want to empower you to begin your mornings in a relaxed, calm and positive way, so here are four easy and effective practices you can incorporate into your morning routine.

Remember, you don’t have do them all at once! Introduce these practices at your own pace and soon they will become a regular part of your routine.

Pick the one you feel intuitively drawn to and build from there. And one last tip, your goal is progress, not perfection. Over the course of time these practices actually become self-reinforcing because you will notice how much better they make you feel.

1. Meditation

As I’ve said before, “rise, pee, meditate!” When you meditate first thing in the morning, the peace, calm and relaxation stays with you for the rest of your day.

Doesn’t that sound nice?

Don’t worry, even if you don’t feel relaxed while you are meditating, you are much more likely to feel relaxed throughout your day if you make the time to meditate in the morning.

Meditation allows the nervous system to discharge stress and tension so even if your mind is racing during meditation, you are still getting the benefits of the practice.

Spending 5-10 minutes first thing in the morning will significantly reduce your stress levels for the rest of the day. In fact, meditation has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety, improve memory and focus, and increase positive emotions.

You may think that finding an extra five or ten minutes in the morning to meditate is next to impossible, but when it comes down to it, you do have the time.

Instead of hitting the “snooze” button a few times each morning, throw off the covers and get settled into your meditation. Or, simply wake up a little bit earlier each morning and rise, pee, meditate!

Here’s how you can put it into action:

  1. Set your alarm five or ten minutes earlier each day. Or simply commit to getting out of bed when your alarm first goes off.
  2. Settle into a space that is calming, grounding and conducive to spending several quiet minutes in meditation.
  3. You can turn on some quiet, meditative music or listen to my free guided meditation.
  4. Sit upright in a comfortable position and take a few deep, cleansing breaths. Allow your breath to serve as the anchor of your awareness throughout your meditation.
  5. Accept what arises without judgment and without attachment. Draw your awareness back to your breath when your mind begins to wander.

2. Gratitude Journaling

This simple, yet powerful practice has been shown to lower stress levels and boost your sense of satisfaction in your life and relationships.

Since gratitude journaling allows you to shift your mindset from one of stress and negativity to abundance and happiness, it is another wonderful practice to add to your morning routine!

Gratitude journaling helps ground you in the present moment and gives you an opportunity to focus on and appreciate all wonderful things you do have in your life. Drawing your awareness to what you are grateful for helps to reduce the negativity bias of the mind.

According to Greater Good, people who consistently practice gratitude have a stronger immune system, lower blood pressure, experience more joy, optimism and positive emotions and feel less lonely and isolated.

Here’s how you can put it into action:

  1. Find a notebook or journal to use as your “gratitude journal”
  2. Every morning, whether it’s right after you meditate or after you eat breakfast, write down five things you are grateful for. Or, you can write down one thing you are grateful for and five reasons why you are grateful for it.

3. Lemon Water

Yep, a warm mug of lemon water, it’s as simple as that! Not only does this help you wake up naturally, it’s a very refreshing way to start your day.

Here are some of the benefits of drinking lemon water in the morning:

  1. Stimulates your digestive system
  2. Naturally and gently cleanses and detoxifies the body
  3. Helps boost your immunity
  4. Hydration (starting your day with hydration is an excellent way to wake up and stay energized!)

Because lemon water is gently waking up your digestive system, it is best to drink before breakfast and coffee. I sometimes drink it when I am doing my gratitude journaling or, when I do need to get out the door at a certain time, I sip it while I’m getting ready.

Here’s how you can put it into action:

  1. Pick up a bag of lemons at your local grocery store.
  2. Boil water using a tea kettle (in a pinch you can microwave your water for 1 minute).
  3. While your water is heating up, take a lemon and roll it against the counter with the palm of your hand, pressing lightly against it. This will help you get the most juice out of it.
  4. After you have heated the water, cut the lemon in half and squeeze one of the halves into the water. Store the other half in the fridge for the next morning.
  5. Drink and enjoy!!

Note: If it’s a little too tart, you can just use ¼ of a lemon or add a little bit of organic honey!

4. Breakfast

I’m sure you’ve heard many people say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day…and you know what? They’re 100% correct!

Do you feel tired and sluggish every morning? Feel like you’re going to fall asleep by 10am? Find yourself craving and reaching for something sugary and sweet mid-morning and late-afternoon?

Eating a good breakfast can help!

Breakfast fuels your body with energy, nutrients and fiber and helps you avoid the mid-morning crash. A healthy breakfast revs up your metabolism and gives you sustained energy for the day.

It’s important to remember that you don’t have to be a Food Network Star to make a delicious, nourishing breakfast. A healthy breakfast can be made in as little as five minutes.

Here’s how you can put it into action:

This one is simple. Plan what you’re going to eat for breakfast ahead of time and make sure your kitchen is well stocked with lots of breakfast goodies.

Some easy breakfast ideas are:

  1. Plain greek yogurt, berries and organic granola
  2. Whole grain toast with avocado or almond butter
  3. Oatmeal with walnuts and berries
  4. Scrambled or hard-boiled eggs with toast and fruit

I’m excited for you to incorporate some of these practices into your morning routine! Which one are you going to try first? Comment below or let us know on the Illuminated Flame Facebook Page.

Wishing you a happy, calm, and relaxed start to your day!

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Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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