How do you Spend the First Hour of your Day? A Self-Care Morning Guide.
As soon as your alarm goes off, what is the first thing you’re doing? What thoughts pop into your mind? Are you grabbing for your phone? It is good to become aware of what your instincts are, when you first wake.
Many of the top self-help entrepreneurs these days have become very regimented with how they utilize their first hour of the day. We can hear anything from journaling, to meditating, to the more extreme regimes like the cold water plunges. Rather than checking emails, or instantly reaching for the phones as soon as the eyes open – over time, many of us come to realize that some of our ingrained habits, are no longer serving us.
It has become widely recognized just how important that first hour of the day is for productivity, and our state of mind going into the day.
The activities we do within our first hour of waking, set the stage for how the rest of the day will pan-out.
If you wake up ‘on the wrong side of the bed’, so to say, or in a low-vibrational mindset because you look outside and it’s snowing again (in May!), how are we suppose to enter our Zoom meeting with a high-vibrational positive energy, if there is no awareness in the first place?
Becoming aware of our habits – especially in the morning – is a great place to start. I’ve listed some of my favourite routines. Not every day is the same, but most days have an incorporation of the majority of these habits;
- Making my bed, as soon as I get out. This includes cleaning up my immediate space, if needed. Starting the day off with an accomplishment, however little, can mentally set us up for a day full of accomplishments. Plus, a tidy space does positively support our mental state.
- Gratitude journal. It is a great practice for not only reflecting on the day before you go to bed, making note of things you are grateful for, but also in the morning, doing the same thing, and tying those in with how you envision the day unfolding. Many of the top spiritual leaders of our time rave over pen-ing our gratitudes to paper. Give it at least 21 days, at which point it will more likely become habitual, and you may notice your outlook slowly shift. Make note of how you feel following this activity.
- Don’t check your email or social media. Unless it is something urgent. Otherwise, making it the habit to focus on you, during that first hour.
- Water with lemon. My go-to is a pint-size glass of warm water with 1/2 a squeezed lemon, first thing in the morning. If I feel the need to change it up, I do a lemon chia water – which is adding a tablespoon of chia seeds into this lemon water, for added fibre to aid digestion.
- Meditation. If you’re new to meditation, it can seem very challenging, as the mind seems to wonder so easily. Much like with anything, practice does help.
- Yoga. I love yoga, and find myself going through cycles of doing it consistently, and then letting the practice fade over a few months, before coming back to it. It pairs nicely with the meditation practice.
- Quality food. Your body should be treated as a luxury, import car – both your body and the luxury car require quality food and fuel, respectively, to perform. At Health Over All, we have many exciting programs in store, including dietary programs to get you set up for lasting success.
- Lastly, spreading kindness. For anyone who knows me, knows how much I respect those that are kind to others. Here are a few things we can all do, not necessarily just in the morning, but throughout the day:
- If you wake up next to someone, have someone special in your life, or have some great close friends, share some kind words – tell them how much they mean to you.
- Call your parents more often, if you’re able to.
- Connect with someone. Everyone wants to be loved, and feel appreciated. Unfortunately not everybody has the opportunity to connect as often as we might – even more so during this current pandemic. Share a smile, connect over small talk. The simple ‘good morning’ pass-by during your morning walk, can be enough to turn someone else’s day around for the better.
Become more aware of your morning habits, and what you may unconsciously do within your first hour. Avoiding emails and social media checking within that first hour, is a great place to start.
Cheers – my coffee cup to yours – to a great morning.
Dr. Alison Gottschalk, ND