I began my job at CSUMB almost two years ago. Before that I was taking night classes and interning a couple days a week. Because of my previous schedule I would sleep in and start the morning off at a slow pace. Nowadays, with a full time job I have felt rushed in the mornings. My head is scattered as I plan out what to eat, wear, how to do my hair, and somehow manage to not be (too) late for work. I craved long moments of lingering over coffee with my hubby while chatting about life. I thought I could never get back to that during the weekdays. I then listened to this Tim Ferriss podcast about his five morning rituals. That inspired me to change some of my habits around and carve out an hour each morning to attend to that which matters most to me. I wake up a little earlier, keep the phone turned screen down, and plan out my outfits the night before.
Something that stuck with me from Tim's podcast was the notion of, "If I win the morning then I win the day". I think that is so true. If I can start the morning with a clear mind, a healthy meal, and a smile on my face, my day will go so much smoother. There is a lot of uncertainty in life and to be able to have control over specific moments in the day brings me a sense of calm and balance.
There can be added stress when I think I absolutely have to hit all of these activities in order to have a good day. Instead, I try to accomplish at least 3 out of the 5. If I can do just that I know I will have a more positive outlook on the day ahead. Below I have compiled my 5 morning rituals.
- Make the bed. I am a highly visual person who needs her house to be in order. A messy house to me equals added stress. When I can spend a couple minutes smoothing out the sheets and making my bed, I feel a sense of calm and order rush over me. It is something I can control that adds beauty into my life.
- Meditate for 10 - 20 minutes. This varies depending on the day but a minimum of 10 minutes in the morning helps me to center myself and energize my body. I wrote a whole post on just this topic, which you can find here.
- Laying on the Dharma Yoga Wheel. I actually try to fit this in for 3-5 minutes every morning and evening. The wheel is designed to match the contours of the spine and help with back bending. It helps me to release any tension or tightness in the back and shoulders. To be honest it just feels so good to lay on, especially after a bad nights sleep or a long day in the office!
- A tea or coffee moment. Perkin and I will have either a loose leaf tea or coffee. A great coffee recipe using the Chemex can be found here. This is my favorite part of the morning. We will sit for at least 15 minutes and just chat about the day ahead or life in general with NPR playing in the background.
- Walk the dog. We will either head to the beach or walk around Carmel-by-the-Sea checking out all the cute homes, each different from the next. We aim for at least a 30 minute walk but that depends on how much time we have before needing to head to work. I feel so awake and alive after a walk in the crisp morning air. This is a simple pleasure of ours.
Other ideas could be writing in a journal, practicing yoga, stretching, checking in with a friend, or taking a bath. What does your morning routine look like? Anything you would like to add or change?