How you start your day sets the tone for how your day will go. Every article you read on productivity or being happier says the same thing: have a morning and evening routine for they will set you up to live your best life.
It was with great delight that I came across this article by Mama Gena. My favorite line? This one "It is my deep, hot, and holy conviction that the body of every woman is a living, breathing altar." Can I get an "Amen!" or at least a "Hallejuia!"
Taking care of ourselves before we launch ourselves into the day is vital for our sanity.
I can already hear the litany of "I don't have time. I'm already so busy I can't fit anything else into my day." And that is exactly why you need to s-l-o-w down, BREATHE and look at tweaking some of your daily rituals so that they are more life affirming and self nurturing.
(1) Conscious Showering:
( Shhh I pinched the idea from Gwyneth Paltrow's conscious uncoupling LOL).
Okay so what do I mean by that? Showering should be a sensuous experience not a hurried dash to get clean then leap out and get dressed. What I am suggesting is consciously connecting with each part of your body as you lather it up and telling it how much you love it and all it does for you. Stroking your body and loving it and acknowledging all that your body does for you lets all the trillions of cells in your body vibrate at the rate of love and acceptance.
Louise Hay often talks about doing mirror work to help heal your body and what better time to do it than when you are washing your face and applying your make up? That's two birds with one stone right there. Look yourself in the eye and say, out loud " I love you. You are beautiful, smart and fun to be around. I love you and I am grateful for you." Yes it feels weird at first. Yes it gets easier and yes it is worth it.
(3) Post affirmations everywhere:
Write them in lipstick on your mirror. Put post it notes with affirmations on the outside of your glass shower so you can read them while showering. Put them on the dashboard of your car. Set up a reminder on your phone with your favorite affirmation. Change your password to an affirmation that you are working with - see if you notice any difference after a week, a month or two.
Affirmations are powerful statements that are written in the present tense to help us change the negative self talk that often goes on in our minds. Sometimes we struggle to use the present tense as our minds remind us that this is not a reality yet. This is when the phrase "I am in the process of..." comes in very handy. This lets the mind relax and still helps you to work on changing the old pattern.
(4) Eat breakfast:
Or drink it ( smoothie anyone?) Just make sure that you start your day with some healthy food in your tummy.
This is one of those things that we often skip because we are in too much of a rush to get out the door. And it is also one of the most important things that we can do for ourselves. Smoothies are a godsend if you are short of time as they are so quick to whip up and can be absolutely packed with goodies. Adding superfoods like chia seed, kale, cinnamon and turmeric gives you a hit of antioxidants and anti inflammatories while tasting good at the same time.
(5) Morning Pages:
This one is not for those who are racing to get the kids to school on time or to hit the office by 9 am -unless you are super organised and get up really early, in which case I salute you!
Morning pages is a practice that I have recently added to my life and I love it! Julia Cameron's book "The Artist's Way" uses the practice of writing three pages each day to help uncover your creative self but it is much more than that. Writing three pages each day is like clearing out your mind chatter and dumping it all on paper. Some days you wonder where all that stuff came from and other days you can't thin what to write at all but the simple act of sitting down to write three pages or simply writing "I don't know what to write", until something floats to the surface, is cathartic and a great tool for self love.
What are you morning rituals? How do you start your day?