Making Morning Routines and Structure
So I’ll admit that setting up the right morning routine has been both something that I’ve struggled to set in place and something that I’ve hoped to put in place for myself. In the process of struggling with this I’ve tried several different versions of it, including incorporating yoga, walks and of course journaling has made several guest appearances. Most started out well, but none really stuck and it hasn’t been until recently, when most mornings after a good night’s sleep I found myself waking up stressed, anxious and exhausted after a restless bedtime that I thought maybe it’s time to finally revisit this idea and put in place some peaceful intentions into my mornings.
From experience, I know that journaling, a familiar habit of mine, would be a good start a) because I’ve already been practicing this habit for many years and b)it’s just one that’s come naturally for me and therefore is a little easier to fit in, plus provides space to not only do a brain dump, but in the process sort through what may be plaguing me at the moment. In the morning, especially, it can be a helpful start in that after a night’s sleep I’ve had that time to process the events of the previous day and therefore am more open to working through them the next day.
In keeping with the mindful theme, I’m decided to explore guided meditation to start. Of course, the goal is to be able to create my own practice but for now I need the help of a meditation podcasts and guided meditation to help me establish the practice. So far, there’s been a few good ones I’ve found on Spotify that are really simple, beginner ones that aren’t too complex or take you to random places like forests or fields when you just want to find inner calm where you are. A few examples are the Mindful in Minutes podcast and the Mindful Movement podcast, each have ones for the morning and before bed, along with ones to help anxiety, cultivate gratitude and morning intentions. There are even shorter five minute or ten minute ones if you are pressed for time. I personally waver between the shorter ones and a recent favourite is a meditation for centering, that focuses simply on following your breathe and becoming aware of the ground beneath you. After listening to what I can in meditation, I transition to my next step gratitude journaling.
I’ll begun to say that not long after starting on this practice have I already noticed some interesting positive effects. One of them being realizing just how easy it is to come up with things I am grateful for. For example: sometimes it’s just getting through another day, while others its my art practice or meditation… whatever it or they have ended up being each morning I’ve found myself pleasantly surprised to come up with not one, two or even three items but sometimes five or six. Additionally, this practice has helped me feel grateful throughout the day and better appreciate little acts of kindness here and there. Lastly, friends I’ll say that it doesn’t have to be a fancy gratitude journal, the one I am using is a simple notebook that I list my items down the side for that date.
One Last Tip:
To cap off my morning routine (after some self-care) I turn on some calming music (*again there are great playlists for that to be found on Spotify) and get to work choosing my outfit for the day, making my bed and generally tidying up my space as the mark to get started on the day ahead.
All in all, I hope you’ve enjoyed this glimpse into what my morning routine is starting to look like, I know I’ve been enjoying the benefits of setting some mindful structure into my mornings and have really looked forward to this time for myself to start the day off right.
Stay mindful and I hope you are able to cultivate some mindful minutes into your day!