“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” Aristotle
I received an email the other day from someone who I had lost contact with over recent years. It was a lovely surprise so I quickly sent off an email to say hi and thank them for reconnecting – cos I have been really bad at this staying connected thing with all the everyday things in life that make you busy. The email I received back was very open and transparent with some challenges that they were feeling with a busy and happy external life but inside they were feeling off centre, and that they had lost that connection to themselves and missed being who they really were.
It brought back memories for me of when I had felt like this and how I discovered a way to get back on track.
This quote is something that I thought was death to someone like me who gets bored easily and needs variety. But once I started building in a daily routine, a habit, of little things to set me up for success everyday I discovered that I was much more grounded, able to deal with those unexpected things, less stressed, more creative, able to focus on my goals and intentions and was motivated to do it. It all starts off with that moment you wake before you leap out of bed to get on the usual functional things.
My morning ritual is like the springboard for my day. Its helps me feel more energised and ready to take action. My first thought is something that is positive that will put me in the right frame of mind for the day. I use a mantra. It can be anything from “Today is going to be the best day ever”, “I am great at what I do”, or even something more spiritual like “I am filled with love and light”. My next step is the shower and whilst in the shower I visualise being showered by light and this creating a sphere around me that will touch all those that I meet for the day in a positive way. During the day I breathe. Haha well of course I hear you say. What i mean is that I really focus on breathing. It is really filling my lungs deeply and fully as I have a tendency to breathe lightly into my chest. I find that this relieves tension and resets me ready for the next task.
Committing to a few positive morning rituals each and every day can absolutely change your life in every way imaginable. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Start your day with a mantra
- Do something physical (10 minutes yoga, pushups/situps, skipping) to get the blood pumping and the oxygen moving through your body
- Visualise the success of the day. You need to have clarity of what you are doing that day so prepare yourself the day before with what has to be done
- Write – set yourself up for creativity. Writing will help you dump everything in your brain, become a better communicator, improves your ability to recall info. Writing in a diary/journal format you will also gain a greater sense of self understanding. It can be anything writing 2 to 3 pages every morning, anything and everything, or just jotting down some ideas/thughts, big or small they are all worth capturing. Just write each day
- Regular breaks during the day to do something physical – 1 to 2 minute physical activity to reset your brain. It will increase the oxygen and blood flow which will increase your brain function. Gets you to focus on something completely different than the task at hand
- Breathe! When feeling a bit overwhelmed or anxious do the following breathing technique or schedule it in every hour. Breathe in for 4, hold for 4, breathe out for 8. Do this 3 or 4 times, really feeling the breath expand your chest, ribs and belly. Feeling your shoulders drop and your neck tension release.
Whilst I don’t do all of these every single day, hey I am a work in progress here, I do my morning routine every single day. Its the exercise one that slides most often, but one day at a time I am consistently improving on it and building it into my daily practice.
So lets have some sharing everyone, what is your daily practice and how has it helped you?
What daily practice do you want to build and what support will you need to do it?