Many people find their lives enhanced by performing a morning and/or evening ritual. A ritual is a certain succession of actions that help reinforce beliefs and attitudes. What kind of attitude would you foster if every morning you wok up, turned off the alarm and grumbled when you had to get up? Surprisingly, or maybe not so surprisingly, this is what most people do. They would rather dream the day away in bed than meet it head long in order to reach and touch their dreams. How much better would their day go if they woke up with a smile ready to take on whatever came? Rituals do not have to take much time. Waking up 15 to 20 minutes early is all you really need unless you want to incorporate physical exercise, a shower and getting ready.
I personally started doing my new morning routine several months ago and I have noticed a huge difference in not only my productivity, but my overall energy levels and happiness as well! To go along with that, my attitude has been great! Check out the following suggestions on how to foster a positive attitude with a morning ritual:
As soon as consciousness seeps in; smile. Stretch those lips in an upward position to start your day off right.
Breathe deep. This will get your blood circulating and start pumping blood through those muscles that have been relaxed and dormant all night long. Lie on your back and place your hands on your stomach under you ribs. Breathe in slowly and deliberately, preferably through your nose. As you breathe in, your stomach should puff out a bit. Your shoulders should not rise. Hold the breathe and breath out through your lips like you are blowing out a candle. Do this as slow as you can. While you breathe out, your stomach near your ribs should suck in again. Take about 5 good breaths thinking only about breathing in and out.
Once breathing is achieved, think of three or four things you are most grateful for. It can be your family, your job, your pet or anything else. This should only take a few moments.
Breathe in and out quickly about 10 times. This should clear your head and get you ready to start moving.
Stretch your muscles starting at your neck and move down to your shoulders, your arms, your hands, your back and chest, your hips, your stomach, your thighs, your legs and your feet. If you need to sit up to do this, do so. Once you get good at doing this you will want to think of a single goal or several that you wish to achieve while you stretch. Don’t dwell on them though, but get out of bed and take care of your needs.
Go to the kitchen and drink a full glass of water. You can then exercise if you wish or start the shower. The water will get your digestive system ready to meet the day.
While in the shower start your litany of positive affirmations. These are phrases that accomplish a goal or just make you feel good. Repeating positive affirmations is a method of self-hypnosis. If you keep saying it, you are affirming it and you will believe it. The following are some good general positive affirmations to start your day:
I will have a great day today
I will learn something new today
I will help someone in need
I will be strong in the face of adversity
I will be kind to others
I deserve to be happy
I will do all in my power to stay healthy
I will do my work to the best of my abilities
I will do something to improve my life today
I will make progress toward my goals and dreams
I will take what comes today and deal with it the best that I can
I will make good decisions today
I will eat healthy today and not be tempted
I will be successful today
I will be confident
You can also affirm your goals during the affirmation stage of the morning ritual. I would affirm being a successful writer that could live off the money I make from writing. A business person might affirm becoming president of their company in five years. A teacher may affirm that he or she would reach the students in class so that they learn and are successful.
Take a few more breathes and go out there to meet the day with a smile on your face and bounce in your step.
Bonus Ideas For Morning Ritual
◦ Don’t check your email within 30 minutes of waking up in the morning! If you ignore your email and do your morning ritual first, statistics show that you are over 30% more likely to be more productive during that day.
◦ Read for fifteen minutes from a self-development or similarly uplifting source of information.
◦ Listen to favorite music while stretching or doing yoga for 20 minutes or so.
◦ Review all of your goals and then visualize yourself doing and accomplishing them with emotion!
◦ Making a strategic plan that has you doing the most important things first in the day and then finishing everything else after that.
◦ Having a nutritious meal early in the day. One of my favorites is organic baby spinach and a banana mixed in my Nutribullet blender to make a delicious and energizing smoothie.
Your evening ritual, should you choose to do it, should focus on calming the body and mind in order to ready it for sleep while still fostering a positive attitude.
Here are a few steps you can follow to perform an evening ritual:
Do some deep breathing. Deep breathing does waken the body, but it also induces relaxation. Lie in the bed and slowly breathe in and out, as you did in the morning. Do this five to six times concentrating only on the breaths you are taking. Quiet the mind of everything else.
Set your alarm and think about your day. Evaluate progress toward goals and think of three things you did during that day that fulfilled your morning affirmations.
If you pray, say your evening prayers. If you do not pray, reinforce some of your favorite affirmations.
Have a good night’s sleep.
If you have problems thinking up your own affirmations, view this YouTube video by Jason Stephenson, Law of Attraction Positive Affirmations for Success and Abundance, Live a Prosperous Life.