I read Robin Sharma’s book ‘The 5 AM Club’ about 6 years ago. It was from reading that book, I learned how establishing a morning routine is a game changer in gaining control over my own life! I must say that setting up a morning routine is not for the light at heart! It is not easy. It is definitely something that takes work and commitment. I found that layering in habits worked well for me; I didn’t do it all at once, I got really persistent with one change before adding in another.
Many have reached out lately, struggling with anxiety. I would suggest that owning your morning routine can drastically reduce anxiety. If you wake up in a frantic ‘oh crap, gotta go’ frame of mind you are already behind, you are heightened and probably feeling out of control.
Control your mornings, control your anxiety, control your life.
- Wake up earlier. One hour earlier.
- Drink one tall glass of water as soon as you wake up. Our brains are made up mostly of water; while sleeping, your brain has been hard at work repairing your body. In order to function in this mode, your brain would have used stored water which you will now need to replenish. I squeeze half a lemon in mine…check out this article to learn more about the benefits of drinking lemon water…https://health.clevelandclinic.org/7-reasons-to-start-your-day-with-lemon-water-infographic/
- Make your bed. It’s a task and your first small win for the day! Anxiety tends to sink its claws in when there are unfinished tasks. Stay ahead of it.
- Practice gratitude. Our anxious minds continually randomly fire negative thoughts. Step out of the pattern of negative thinking by focusing on positive thoughts. Notice the little things. Your brain cannot think both positive and negative at the same time. If you focus on the positive you will squeeze out the negative. A 5-minute gratitude journal could help with this practice. This article explains the gratitude journal https://positivepsychology.com/gratitude-journal/
- Meditate—start with 5 mins. Research tells us that meditation physically revives neural pathways of the brain. It decreases anxiety by changing from instantly reacting to negative chatter to tactfully responding. Slow your thinking. Change your viewpoint—change from thinking ‘I am an anxious person’ to ‘I am a person who experiences anxious feelings’. When the anxiety is not skin-bound we are able to take our control back and make helpful changes. https://www.headspace.com/meditation/meditation-for-beginners
- Move. Get the blood pumping for 15 minutes. This could be stretching, yoga, squats or a short walk or jog. Physical activity releases pent up emotions, it reduces muscle and joint pain and boosts flexibility.