6 Practices to Transform Your Morning
Waking, Cleansing, Stretching, Meditation and Gratitude
Make Up this Daily Ritual!
1. Wake up Completely
Rest in bed for 2 minutes after waking and practice breathing awareness into the body. Start with the feet, the hands, both or do a body scan with awareness. Do it with an open heart and loving kindness towards yourself. Wake up and be fully embodied before you lift out of bed and begin your day.
2. Cleanse with Lemon and Warm Water
Enjoy a glass of warm water with fresh lemon juice. Not only give yourself a little immunity boost in the AM this beneficial beverage supports happier skin, maintaining a healthy weight, a natural flush and improved digestion.
3. Choose Your Space
Identify a quiet corner in space/room your home. Perhaps with a window to allow for sunlight, streetlight, or moonlight - all the better. Be creative - and in this special space, arrange a comfortable place to sit, perhaps with cushions or a chair and light a small candle/incense. Allow for enough space to move or place a yoga mat.
4. Come into Alignment with a Mindful Yoga Routine or Simple Stretching
Do a couple of minutes of stretching. Begin at the top of your body and mindfully move each joint in gentle circles: neck, shoulders, elbows, wrists, fingers waist etc all the way down to the toes. Then stand tall with spine straight, arms at your side and chest lifted. Taking in a few deep cleansing breaths.
Or you may start out with head-to-toe wiggling, the kind you did when you were a little kid and were too excited about something to stand still. If you can’t wiggle all of you, move the parts of you that you can. Follow this with a couple of “holding up the sky" stretches. Reach as high as you can with both arms, keeping your hands flat as though you are balancing a tray. Hold the stretch for a count of 10, then let your arms and head hang down toward the floor. Finish up with some simple bear swings letting your arms swing.
Engage in a simple morning yoga routine. Adventure into a little YIN YOGA practice. Lying on your back knees to chest, figure 4 hip stretch, gentle spinal twist with legs in table top, on all fours cat/cow, into downward dog walking, extended child’s pose, slowing standing up dangling arms with bent knees, squat into chair pose, seated easy pose, extend legs and forward fold, lying on back happy baby, corpse pose/shavasana.
5. Sit in Awareness
With your eyes slightly open, sit on the chair or a cushion with your back straight and resting hands on your lap. Take a few deep abdominal breaths and wish the world well - allow images of people, places, an d things to randomly flit across your thoughts, and with each image simply feel or silently say, “Loving Kindness”. You’ll find that there is a slight pause after the initial rush of images. When that happens all you have to do is to breathe quietly and deeply, listening softly to your breath. If you find your mind wandering or worrying about something just come back to feeling your breath. Bring awareness to how good it feels to connect with the world around you this morning. Notice your heart energy perhaps place one hand there and feel the heart beat - connect. Sit like this for a few minutes, or longer if you feel like it.
6. Align With Gratitude
To move into the rest of the day, take a moment to identify at least three things you are grateful for. Obvious choices: your body, the chair, friends, a mind that can think, music. Then, when you are ready, take a deep cleansing breath and head into the day.
We promise that if you do these practices every day it will re-align your life. Why? Because it has a way of energetically aligning you with the day by loosening up the knots in the physical, emotional and mental bodies, giving grace the space it needs to find its way into our hearts. And with grace, anything can happen - even miracles.