Wake time. Six minutes to daybreak.
Rest was good last night. Restorative Sleep has been in effect for a couple days now, and the new day is greeted with renewed energy. All of the clothes for the day were selected and ironed last night; lunch is packed and ready to pull out of the fridge on the way out the door. The alarm was set for a few minutes earlier today, creating the opportunity to approach the day on purpose, rather than by reaction. There’s no need to rush around frantically getting things prepared…and the kids are still sleeping.
The sun is just about to break the plane of the horizon. Morning is still and peaceful.
Draw the blinds and watch in silence as morning breaks. Another beautiful day has arrived. Thoughts of gratitude begin to flow as the new day introduces itself with a handshake of light.
A gentle stretch and a round of Life Extension Exercises open the lines of communication from the brain to the body, quiet instrumentals playing in the background. A few minutes to quietly journal some initial thoughts for the day, and a chapter of reading from a book unrelated to daily life maintain the slow and steady pace of the morning.
Number One is taken care of. This will be a good day…
As Dan Strutzel of Nightingale-Conant shares with SUCCESS Magazine, a morning ritual of starting the day slowly helps de-stress the day before it even begins. We’ll give ourselves a better shot at a great day if we wake with a series of preparations to get ourselves geared up physically, mentally, and spiritually before jumping in.
Morning rituals create a buffer between our minds and the noise of modern existence, giving our bodies a chance to start up in peace, rather than under stress. One of the greatest benefits is that the personal time they create allows us to focus on ourselves before we attend to everyone else’s needs and demands. Very often in modern life, we suffer because we are not afforded this time for self-attention.
Our individual needs for dedicated “me” time differ as much as our personalities, but the good news is that there is no prescribed set of activities that need to be included in anyone’s morning rituals. We all enjoy starting our days differently – some like a quiet, calm, relaxed start, while others prefer a quick, high energy start (and some just need the quick start to keep from falling back asleep in the quiet of the morning). Whichever way we prefer to begin the day, when we take care of our own needs before we are presented with everyone else’s, we’ll be able to address theirs much more efficiently.
A few questions we can ask ourselves to help us find the components of our morning rituals are:
• If this were a vacation, what would I most enjoy doing as soon as I woke up? (Why not let a morning ritual have that “vacation”feel?)
• What is something I want to do today for myself that I won’t have time for once the “noise” of the day begins?
• Is there an aspect about this particular time of the day that I don’t want to miss? (ex: sunrise, glassy ocean, gentle breeze, clean air)
• Is there something I am pondering that requires quiet and my greatest clarity of thought?
In answering these, we’ll doubtless find some very attractive rituals to incorporate into our daily slow-and-steady wake up sequencing, and in doing them, we’ll set ourselves up to greet each day with purpose, fulfillment, confidence, and peace.
Let’s wake up earlier tomorrow and start the day with Number One!