10 minute morning rituals to start your day
For many years my morning routine was non existent. I would go to bed with great intentions of rising with the sun, only to hit the snooze button multiple times and struggle to get out of bed. Then when I’d finally be ready to wake up, I’d lie in bed glued to my phone scrolling through Facebook, Instagram and checking my three email accounts (yes I know..). Then I’d leave myself just enough time to have a quick shower and get myself ready before racing out the door and straight to work. I’d work all day (often not taking a lunch break) finish work in the dark and then make my way home to start the whole cycle again….
I bet this story sounds all too familiar for many of us. It’s often the reality of juggling a busy working life!
Somewhere in that vicious cycle, I found myself becoming very envious of all the people I was following on Instagram. They were practicing these beautiful ‘morning routines’. Down at the beach, doing yoga, walking in nature, sipping on juices and the general feel was #happiness.
This was about this time that I had started my own wellness journey, and knew that I needed to start prioritising some of my day for ME. Not just letting myself be dragged into a unhealthy cycle of sleeping in, checking social media, rushing to work, working and then coming home to start it all again. But I knew my routine wasn’t going to look like the ones I saw on Instagram. Heck if I wanted to get to the beach and be in the office by 8:30am I’d be up at 4:30am….NO WAY!
So I thought about what I could do and how I could make a beautiful morning routine work for me, and my life? I started very SLOWLY, and I tried lots of different things trying to find something that would stick. It changed with the seasons, it looked COMPLETELY different after I has a baby but above everything else, every obstacle that came my way I showed up and committed myself to giving myself that small window of time EVERYDAY.
I speak from experience when I say that carving out a morning routine has had a significant impact on my overall health and wellbeing. Not only do I feel less stressed and anxious about the day ahead, but I have a sense of calm about how I go about my morning. It affects every aspect of my life, from my mood to my relationship to how I go about my day.
Remember that a morning ritual doesn’t have to take up a lot of time (5-10 minutes will work perfectly). The thing is to do it each morning first thing when you wake up. No distractions, no scrolling through Facebook. 10 minutes of uninterrupted YOU time! Here are some of my favourite 10 minute morning rituals for beginning your day with positive energy, clarity and a sense of calm.
It has often been said that cultivating a strong gratitude practice can lead to a happier life! When you start your day listing the things that you are grateful for, you bring conscious awareness to the positive things in your life. A gratitude practice reminds us in the simplest of ways that we are truly lucky to be alive.
As a morning ritual, send 10 minutes thinking about the things that make you smile, that light you up inside and bring you joy. Take the time to write down your gratitude list. See and feel that joy in your life. Better still, ask your partner or children what they are grateful for, and bring this ritual into your families lives.
For me, gratitude has been a powerful way of calling in positive energy and joy into my day. It’s helped me refocus my thoughts and look at life with greater optimism and joy. Start now by thinking about 3 things that you are grateful for in your life. Notice how it puts a smile on your face.
Starting your day with some gentle (or strong) stretching can improve your posture, alleviate aches and pains, increase blood flow and increase your energy for the day ahead. For me what I love about starting my day with some yoga is that I don’t need to leave my home. I can do it in my lounge room (often still in my pyjamas) and I know I’m setting my day up well.
A gentle yoga session as part of my morning routine helps me to slowly wake up my mind and warm up my body. It also builds strength and tone and depending on what style of stretching or yoga you do, it doubles as a workout! Bonus Points!!
If going to a yoga class is your thing, there are endless options available. You can find a yoga class near you by searching findyoga.com.au or if you’re like me and your need a stay at home stretch session I have recently discovered Yoga with Adriene on YouTube and the practice is fantastic. Loads of different class options depending on how you’re feeling or how much time you have.
Finding 10 minutes of stillness each morning has had the most profound impact on my life. I can immediately tell in my life when I’ve stopped meditating. Things slowly start to unravel themselves and all of a sudden the little things start to set me off!
A meditation routine that has you focus on relaxing breath and becoming mindful is an awesome way to start your day. There is no right or wrong way to meditate, all that matters is that its done. There are countless meditation apps out there to guide you, or you can simply find a relaxing piece of music that you like and simply focus on your breath. Whatever works best for you.
Now I’ll be completely honest here, my husband and I meditate together most mornings. Our ritual takes 7 minutes and is a guided meditation by one of our favourite gurus Gabrielle Bernstein. Most mornings when the alarm sounds one of us with moan about still being tired, but we lay there in stillness for the 7 minutes and after EVERY session we feel a million times better. What I’m trying to say is drop the ‘should’ around meditation. It doesn’t need to be another task on your to do list. Lay in bed, have your eyes closed, just commit to 10 minutes.
We all know the health benefits of drinking water, but according to Dr. David Duizer drinking a glass of water is incredibly beneficial in the morning: “Without starting your day with adequate water intake we are likely to remain dehydrated for the rest of the day. So before you reach for your morning coffee, make sure you drink 1-2 glasses of filtered water. Drinking water first thing in the morning helps with mental clarity, energy, and mood.
For extra bonus points, trying adding some fresh lemon juice to a glass of warm water. Lemon water is a brilliant way to boost your digestion for the day ahead, support weight loss and is very soothing on an upset stomach.
If you do nothing else, starting your morning with a few big glasses of water before you reach for anything else will help boost your energy and mental clarity and set your day up well.
Now I wouldn’t be a health and wellbeing coach if I didn’t mention that eating a nourishing breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Make breakfast part of your morning ritual, don’t just scoff down a piece of toast in a hurry as you rush our the door. Instead, prepare something that you are going to enjoy! Make the night before if you don’t have time, but allow yourself the time to sit and eat mindfully and full digest your food.
I’ve shared loads of quick and simple breakfast recipes in my ebook, as well as over on my recipe page. Some of my favourites are
Whatever morning ritual you decide to do, make it a habit. Do it every day. Set up a routine. This is the key to a successful morning ritual—to create ritualistic habits that you repeat until you do it without thinking!
Have I missed something? Let me know in the comments below.