“How you wake up each day dramatically affects your level of success in every single area of your life.” – Hal Elrod, Author
I listened to an interesting podcast on a 5-minute morning routine that anyone can implement and follow. The routine framework is based on Dr. Rangan Chatterjee’s book: Happy Mind, Happy Life: The New Science of Mental Well-Being.
Do you have a morning routine that is consistent and positive to kick off your day? Even if you do, read on for tips on how to make the most out of your morning coffee (or walk)…
Here are the highlights:
- If you struggle with being consistent in the mornings, the goal isn’t about the routine but taking time for yourself to start the day GROUNDED. And believe it or not, 5 minutes is all you need to transition into the day.
- We all know that changing behavior is hard so an easy way to implement a habit that will stick is via habit-stacking. According to Dr. BJ Fogg, author of Tiny Habits, stacking a new behavior on top of old ones will provide the impetus to do them. For example – use the time for brewing your morning cup-a-joe or taking the dog for a walk to do your 5-minute self-care ritual.
Here are the 3 Ms of the morning routine to include:
M1: Mindfulness – 1-2 minutes:
- Practice being in the present moment. The past or future are only ideas in your head. Enjoy the power of NOW.
- Mindful breathing for 1-2 minutes is sufficient. Close your eyes. Notice your breath coming in and going out. Let thoughts and sounds come and go. Come back to the breath. Try some deep breaths – hold it and then exhale out. If you need guidance, try this video to follow along.
- Even a minute of ‘falling still’ makes a difference in our lives. Another falling still practice to try is to get sunshine on your face for 1-2 minutes to center the circadian rhythm for the rest of the day.
M2: Movement – 1-2 minutes:
- Do some squats while coffee is brewing. Or push ups if you are motivated.
- The key is to wake up the body and get not only your blood flowing but also your lymphatic system. Unlike blood, our body does not have a pump for the lymphatic system so the primary way to move it is through exercise. Try squats, jumping jacks, push-ups or even dancing.
- Here’s an exercise you can try. Grab a chair and practice getting up and sitting down without using your hands. Then try getting up with no hand movement and balancing on one foot.
- Once you’ve mastered that, then try sitting down on the floor and getting up without using your hands to assist. This type of balance is key to longevity. This video shows how:
M3: Mindset – 1-2 minute:
- For a positive mindset, try practicing gratitude. You can do this with journaling.
- Or if you are not a fan of writing in journals, you can send a text or a short note and give gratitude to others. How about a nice memory of your time with a loved one and reminding them how much fun that was? Or thanking someone for a job well done – no matter how small.
- You can also read scripture, books, or whatever gets you into the positive mindset.
If you are worried that doing squats while walking the dog is going to look weird, remember what Dave Ramsey of The Ramsey Shows says: “If being broke is normal, I want to be weird for the rest of my life”. Weird is how you get to health – most of us are sedentary and overweight. Our population is sick and unhealthy – so we need to be weird. Gosh – how many times have I heard that? People think I’m nuts and beyond weird for all the things I’m doing to stay healthy and young. But my goal is to live well so that I can focus on the priorities in my life – family, leadership in business, friends and community.
Try these techniques – you will notice how much impact 5 minutes can make to your day. Remember that you have to come first so you can help others. Don’t jump into social media or into the priorities of others UNTIL you’ve taken time for your 5 minutes to ground yourself.