3 Reasons to Create a Meaningful Morning Ritual
Do you have a meaningful morning ritual that supports your success and overall sense of well-being? A routine that sets a positive tone for your day? For a long time, I didn’t. For years, during my ‘corporate’ days, my morning ritual looked like this: Wake up, brush teeth, put in contacts, go to bathroom, chug coffee, run, shower, get dressed, feed dogs, let out and pray they do their business right away, rush to work, freak out when caught in traffic, and arrive to work (often 5-7 min late). For years it was very rushed and stressful, and I thought there was no other option, that’s just the way things were. I didn’t realize it was my CHOICE to start the day this way.
It wasn’t until recently that I began to create a meaningful morning ritual. A routine that sets a positive tone for my day. And now that I’m working to rebalance my hormones, I’ve become even more conscious of my actions to support my overall sense of well-being. Mornings have become one of my favorite parts about the day because it forces me to slow down. Today my morning ritual, which takes about 1.5 hours, looks like this: wake up, brush teeth, put in contacts, do my business on the toilet (bc yes this happens first thing), let dogs out, make and sip hot lemon water, make matcha, meditate for 10 minutes, run, shower, get dressed, make a smoothie, and go to work.
The change in my morning routine didn’t happen overnight. It took time for me to realize how important this was to me and prioritize it enough to shift my bed-time a 30 min earlier so that I could set my alarm 30 minutes earlier. It took me a while to learn that coffee was no longer the best beverage for me first thing that actually my body needs to hydrate. In addition to this my body digests the caffeine from matcha better than coffee. It took me over a year to learn that I actually ‘get to’ meditate, not ‘have to,’ and what a difference this makes in my overall day. And it’s an ongoing work in progress, because for me, it’s about progress, not perfection. Some day’s life happens and I have to go with the flow, but 95% of the time, I make sure my morning ritual takes place.
3 Reasons to create a meaningful morning ritual:
Self-Discipline. It takes self-disciple and mental toughness to get up earlier in the morning especially if you’re not an early morning person. This self-disciple will help support your productivity and success for the rest of the day, allowing you t find more discipline in almost all other facets of your life including your diet, health, mental focus. In addition to to this, your mental toughness will help you overcome any daily stressors.
Time. Time is a valuable asset, and one might think they never have enough time. Establishing a morning ritual will give you an extra 1-2 hours in the morning, allowing you to put more work into the things that are important to you and things you otherwise may overlook. While you may think you don’t have the time to carve out for a morning ritual, it can actually make your day more productive, and life more successful.
Stress. These days we are constantly rushing around feeling stressed out which is working our sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight stress response mode). Too much stress on the body negatively impacts our health and slows down our digestion. Taking the time to slow down in the morning helps support our parasympathetic nervous system (rest and digest) so that we’re better able to reduce or cope with stressful situations throughout the day. Not only that, slowing down and being present will help create feelings of relaxation, calmness and mental clarity.
How do you create a meaningful morning ritual? Start by choosing 1-2 actions to implement this week. These actions could be simple habits such as:
Placing a glass of water on your bedside table to drink first thing in the morning.
Taking 2-3 minutes to breathe and stretch your body.
Weaning off coffee (or at least paying attention to how coffee makes you feel).
Moving your body for 20-30 minutes so you don’t have to think about getting it done after work.
Meditating. There are great apps like headspace and insight timer which offer guided practices.
Stating 3 things you’re grateful for.
Experiment and find what works best for YOU. Make a promise to yourself so that you are committed, mark it in your calendar, set your alarm, and remember, progress not perfection. As John C. Maxwell says, You will never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.