This weekend's musings' post is all about how we start our day. Morning time is my favourite time of the day. I love the first hour after waking up, when the sun is rising and the day is full of possibilities. If I wake early, I feel like I have a head start to the day. I also feel that this hour is very much my own time, without any demands or distractions.
Most people agree that lazy weekend mornings spent taking our time and enjoying brunch are pretty good. How nice would it be to bring a little of this weekend morning routine to our week day mornings?! Of course, we don't have the luxury of having hours to spend over breakfast, but we don't need hours. All we really need is an extra twenty to thirty minutes in the morning to enjoy breakast and a leisurely start to the day. When it comes to weighing up the choice between getting up twenty minutes earlier and having this time to enjoy a more leisurely start to the day or having this extra twenty minutes in bed resulting in a more rushed morning routine, it is a question of priority. I ask myself which option is most beneficial to me? Which option will best set me up for the day ahead and leave me feeling relaxed and energised??
So often we are pulled in a hundred different directions between work demands, family life, friends, technology, gym visits, socialising and general craziness. As we can't just flick a switch and eliminate these demands and stresses, we must manage them better. This means finding a way to put them to one side for a short while and allowing ourselves some time to be present and mindful. It is about giving ourselves the gift of a period of time when we don't have to think about these demands or do anything to meet them. It is a time when we can acknowledge they are there but know that that we don’t have to worry about them or deal with them at that time. First thing in the morning is the perfect time to do this as this is the time when the majority of us feel most energised and awake.
A relaxed start to the day definitely makes me less stressed and more appreciative of all that is good in my life. It helps clear my mind and gives me the best start to the day. I really believe that a major determining factor in how the rest of my day goes is how I spend my morning time. If my morning is relaxed and gentle, I find I am much better equipped to deal with the stresses of the day. I also think that by taking time at the start of my day to eat a healthy and nutritious breakfast, I am much more likely to eat well and feel energised for the rest of the day.
For my morning routine, I try to breathe long and deep and be mindful of where I am and what I am doing. I also focus on my breakfast and ensure that it is relaxed and stressfree. This post ties in with last week's post on Mindful Eating, which is all about focusing attention on the act of eating. There are little practical things we can do to free up this time in the morning, such as washing our hair at night time, laying out our next day outfit before going to bed and preparing breakfast the night before (this Overnight Strawberry Oat and Chia Pudding is perfect for this).
I know getting up a half hour earlier in the morning is easier said than done, especially when the alarm clock starts buzzing in the middle of a deep sleep. It's so tempting to hit snooze. But I really think that a rushed and hectic morning is no way to start a day and very often leads to rushing, stress and even bad decision making later on in the day.
Speaking for myself, the morning time is a very special part of my day, a time of my day where I am very thankful and grateful for waking up and feeling energised. I would hate to miss it rushing and running about.