It can feel like every day is an uphill struggle. Especially under the current lockdown. From the moment we open our eyes we can feel like we’re pushing against an unstoppable tide. Even something as simple as hauling ourselves out of bed and getting dressed can feel like a herculean effort. How we spend our mornings inevitably has a knock-on effect on the rest of the day. If we get the day off to a bad start, we’re likely to carry our negativity around with us all day. Our perception determines our reality. And the negative outlook that forms in the morning can poison our though processes for the rest of the day. Mild challenges suddenly become “impossible”, opposing viewpoints suddenly become “unreasonable” and our self-perception is tainted in ways that will carry over into the next morning.
If we get the start of the day right, everything else (whatever challenges the day throws at us) becomes a little less manageable. Here are some tips to get the day, every day, off to a perfect start.
Good mornings follow a good night. So make sure that you get your head down at a reasonable hour. If you’ve been having trouble sleeping under lockdown, it may be because you’ve spent all day looking at your phone, tablet, TV or other device. All that blue light is the enemy of a good night’s sleep. Try curbing your caffeine, drinking a herbal tea before bed and having a hot bath about an hour before you turn in. This will lower your core temperature and prevent you from feeling hot and sticky at night.
Of course, this is easier said than done for many of us. The allure of the snooze button can seem unavoidable, especially if we didn’t get a good night’s sleep. Whether you’re working today or not, it behoves you to get an early start on the day. No more dashing out the front door with a cold piece of toast in one hand and a thermos of coffee in the other as you scramble to your car and up the motorway.
Give yourself the time to enjoy a leisurely morning. Otherwise you’ll feel like you’re stressed and on the back foot for the rest of the day. You deserve better than that.
There are many, many reasons why yoga is beneficial for the mind and body.So treat your body to some of these great morning yoga stretches. It allows us to focus our minds and limber up our bodies. It helps us to alleviate any stress left over from the day prior. It improves focus, memory and concentration, ensuring that we’re at our mental peak and ready to face the day’s challenges. It also helps to make our bodies stronger and more supple, allowing us to stretch out the creakiness that we may feel in the morning and feel more unified in mind and body.
A good day starts with a good breakfast, so make sure you start every day with one. Unless you’re practicing intermittent fasting, you should always make sure that you allow yourself (and the rest of the family) a tasty and nutritious breakfast in the morning.
There’s been much debate as to whether or not breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But it certainly has the potential to improve the way in which your day starts. And that should be reason enough to enjoy a healthy breakfast every morning.
Reading at night is great for helping to lull us to sleep and giving even the most stressful days an enjoyable end. Nonetheless, reading is also a great activity to enjoy in the morning. It allows you to begin the day with some “you time” and is a pleasant and enjoyable way to start waking up your mind. So try making time to read in the mornings. If you really struggle to find the time, try making breakfast the night before (e.g. overnight oats) or simply set your alarm half an hour earlier.
You may already have heard of affirmations, but dismissed them as silly. Indeed, there’s no getting around it. You will feel silly when you start to do them at first. Nonetheless, affirmations do work! Over time, affirmations can significantly improve your outlook, help you to challenge negative thoughts and improve your self-image.
You can’t guarantee that every day will be a good day. But you can guarantee that you’ll try your best to get every day off to a good start!