“Let your mind start a journey thru a new world. Let your soul take you where you long to be. Close your eyes let your spirit start to soar, and you’ll live as you’ve never lived before.” -Erich Fromm
Welcome to the first of many weekly issues of The Journey, the newsletter I share with you to pass on thoughts, tips, insights about health, wellness, beauty and life. Of course, this is a personal journey as well, for some of what I share are practices and rituals that I aspire to, yet haven’t quite mastered. I have years of medical learning, and I hope to serve you by making this knowledge accessible. I welcome your feedback and questions–even the ones you are afraid to ask in person!
Most productivity and personal development experts will agree that the early bird gets the worm Tony Robbins talks about the Hour of Power as a great way to get your day going. I’ve experienced the same and try to start my day in a way that sets me up for success. I also believe that different people work best at different times, and there are morning larks and night owls described as inherited traits in the sleep literature. But no matter when you’re productive hours are, it’s important you set up your day for greater well-being with some healthy morning rituals. Here are my tips for a great start in the morning:
- Say no to the snooze button. Jump out of bed as if someone threw a bucket of cold water on you. Half of your day’s success is actually showing up and being excited. Even if you still feel foggy, get out of bed the minute your alarm rings.
Drink a pint of cold water first thing in the morning. If you don’t like water on its own, squeeze some fresh lime into it. After being without fluids for several hours, your body is dehydrated – you need fluids and the cold water will also stimulate your metabolism.
- Bright light will help you energize. Exposure to light, especially sunlight is invigorating. It signals the brain that it’s time to get going, and turns off the production of melatonin, a sleep-regulating hormone.
- Enjoy the silence for a few minutes. Be mindful of your blessings. Think about the day ahead, and if you don’t do the previous night, write out your to-do list of the most exciting and important things.
- Stretch and move. Research shows that a morning workout triggers positive endorphins and lowers stress hormones for most of the day. Every other day, make it an interval session of fast bursts of activity to turn on fat-burning hormones for the net 36 hours.
- Brush your tongue as well as your teeth. Lose the morning breath and start off on a minty note.
- Aromatherapy in your shower. Scents like mint, citrus, and eucalyptus are a great pick-me-up.
- Drink green tea. Instead of coffee, have a cup of green tea. Boosts your energy, provides antioxidants and has been promoted as a great natural healthy option.
- Eat breakfast within 30-60 minutes of waking to get your metabolism going. All research points to breakfast being the most important meal of your day. Make sure you include protein, healthy fats and some complex carbs to help with appetite control for the rest of the day and prevent the mid-morning slump.
- Journal. I find that writing things out helps me be creative and problem solve, especially in retrospect!
- Take care of yourself, before the rest of your world wakes up! Once kids, spouses and pets are awake, it’s harder to give yourself time to get a great start. Setting the alarm for your own personal power hour makes sense!
What do you do in the morning as part of your “rituals”?
Quick Tip: Mind
Mindfulness is a state of active, open attention on the present. When you’re mindful, you observe your thoughts and feelings without judging them–good or bad. Instead of letting your life pass you by, mindfulness means living in the moment and awakening to experience. Mindful people are happier, more confident and successful. One of the best ways to be mindful is to use your senses to savor an experience–appreciate the colors, textures, smells and flavors of food.
LOOK WHO’S TALKING
“Dear Dr. Susan,
Greetings from Beautiful British Columbia.
Thank you very much for the swift response. I read the report and loved it. You are doing such a great work. On behalf of women everywhere, thank you very much. Take care of yourself and your family.” ~Anna Dos Santos, The Whole Brain Company
p.s. I’d love to hear your comments and questions! What do you want to know, but are afraid to ask?
Enjoy a Positively Beautiful Life!
Susan Mathison, M.D.