I talk a lot on this blog about productive mornings. This week, I tried something a little different, and I found that my productivity was great, and that my mind was relaxed, clear and ready for the day: I enjoyed a slower morning! Slowing down my morning (while still waking up early) gave me peace of mind before a busy day. Here’s how to slow down your morning:
First, I practiced my compass routine the Sunday night before.
So, the house was clean and food was prepped for the week.
When you follow a consistent weekly routine, it gives you more freedom to do what you want in the mornings.
Then, I began my morning at the usual time
…which is between 5:00 and 5:30 AM. I find it incredibly important to stay consistent with my bed time and the time I wake up.
Don’t shortchange your sleep to wake up early. According to the National Institutes of Health, adults need 7-8 hours of sleep each night. If you are waking up at 5:00 AM, I recommend going to bed no later than 10 PM for seven hours of sleep. Be realistic with yourself. If you know you need more than seven hours of sleep, make it a priority to go to bed earlier.
Next, I prioritized morning hydration.
The average adult loses over one pound of water during the night (mostly through our moist breath). Dehydration can make you feel sleepy. Begin rehydrating yourself right away.
I set out the yoga mat in the living room instead of heading off to the gym.
During my yoga session, I watched the sun rise. It was an amazing sight that added such an energetic feeling to the morning.
To get started, try this 20-minute yoga sessions podcast to find a routine that works for you. I recommend episode 84, titled “Good Morning Yoga.”
I enjoyed a healthful breakfast.
A healthful breakfast will give you the nutrient-rich energy you need to be productive. And, people who eat breakfast weigh less than folks who skip it.
Finally, I wrote in my morning pages.
In her book The Artist’s Way, Julia Cameron recommends writing three pages of your stream of consciousness, right after you wake up, to spark creative thoughts. Unlike a journal, morning pages don’t have structure—they simply exist to get your thoughts on paper. After my morning pages, my mind is clear and I feel prepared for the day.
What activities do you enjoy that slow down your morning?
© 2017 Caitlin W Howe, LLC
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