Let me be honest: I am NOT a morning person. I can’t stand using an alarm clock – and with or without one, I do not wake up chipper. I’m slow to rise, and slow to get my bearings in the morning. Over the past few years, I’ve developed a few morning rituals that help me get in gear to face the day.
- Meditate for a few moments. As soon as I am conscious and in that state between being asleep and being fully awake, I allow my mind a few moments of silence. I let my mind wander so long as the thoughts are positive. If I start down a negative path, I redirect my thoughts to the things I am thankful for, cherished happy memories, and the blessings in my life.
- Have a moment of gratitude. I keep a gratitude journal next to my bed. I also have an app on my phone for practicing gratitude, but I prefer to stay away from technology first thing in the morning. I write three things that I am grateful for every day. It’s all right if some of them are repeats – the goal is to “get my mind right,” as my grandmother would say, for the day.
- Set an intention for the day. After I’ve written in my journal, I think about my agenda for the day and set an intention for what I want to accomplish. Having a clear intention makes all the difference for me. If I don’t do this, I tend to feel scattered and unfocused.
- Drink lemon water. Once I’m up, I like to drink a glass of room temperature water that includes the juice of one organic lemon. I have a small juicer, so I juice a lemon fresh every morning. The scent is invigorating, and the lemon water is awesome for the body. It flushes toxins, it wakes up your digestive tract, and it boosts your immune system – plus, it’s tasty. I used to add a little stevia, but over time I’ve come to love the bitterness of the lemon.
- Instead of coffee, have a green smoothie for breakfast! I quit coffee years ago, not because I don’t like it but because for me, coffee is just the vehicle to get sugar and plant-based cream in to my system. I switched to tea (chai is my favorite), and now I wait until mid-morning for a cup of tea. I have a green smoothie to start my day instead. I used to put a lot of fruit in my smoothies, but that is not the best practice. It’s better to eat whole fruit and put veggies in your smoothie. My most recent elixir is awesome: a couple of handfuls of spinach, two celery stalks, a handful of cilantro, half an avocado, a little lime, and about half a frozen banana or a few fresh strawberries – all organic, with filtered water as the base. Sometimes I add chia seeds or flax seeds, and sometimes I add maca powder. And I’ve discovered something I never thought I would say: celery is actually quite sweet. My taste buds have adjusted to my new mixtures, and I had no idea that celery has a natural sweetness that is easily detectable – even from scent alone! It’s amazing.
These practices have helped me re-engineer my days in a positive way, and I hope they are helpful to you too.