8 Morning Rituals To Start Your Day Feeling Great

morning rituals

Is it time to give your morning routine a makeover? These 8 morning rituals may give you a few ideas on how you can start your day a little differently. 

The things you do, and the thoughts you think first thing in the morning, can either make or break the rest of your day.

I have found that if I have some sort of ritual or routine that I do every day, it helps me avoid the yucky funk of overwhelm and blah that I tend to get into first thing in the morning.

According to Ayurvedic philosophy, when you focus on morning rituals that work to align the body with nature’s rhythms, you balance the mind and body, create self-discipline and improve self-esteem.

Who couldn’t use that? I am going to share with you 8 morning rituals (habits) that I have implemented into my day that REALLY make a difference in the way I feel physically, mentally, and emotionally.

Don’t feel like you have to start them all at once. Adopt one or two things that ring true to you, and try it for a few weeks. Then implement something else when you are ready. Don’t be surprised if you begin to see mornings and life in a new light!

morning rituals

8 Morning Rituals

1- Get Up Early

I know for some of you, this may not seem too appealing, but read on. If you can roll out of bed before the sun comes up (at least 20 minutes before sunrise), you will experience the amazing energy that is in the atmosphere at twilight.

I love the lighting just before the sun comes up, the birds chirping, and the stillness in the air.

When you wake up early and give yourself some extra time in the morning, you are going to be much more grounded and ready for an awesome day.

If you get up rushed, feeling behind because you pushed the snooze button one too many times, or if you lay there in bed dreading what is ahead of you, you are setting yourself up to experience that same energy the rest of your day.

I find that after I wake up, it is best to just throw the covers off and pop out of bed. If I just lay there, my mind starts racing, and then it’s easy to start spiraling down into the pit, the pit of OVERWHELM. Does anyone else have that problem?

There will be some days that you will want to just stay in bed for another hour, but from my experience, that just makes it worse. You are better off just getting up and get moving.

morning rituals EFT

2- Tap Out The Bad/Tap In The Good

If you find yourself on the negative side of things in the morning, or if you can’t get motivated to even get out of bed, the best way to change this around is to take a few minutes to TAP IT OUT.

For those of you not familiar with meridian tapping or EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) this is a quick and easy method of releasing negative energy from your system. Read more about how to do it here.

By using this technique you can quickly locate what it is you are feeling, tap it OUT and then tap IN some good yummy positive affirmations that will leave you feeling motivated and ready for your day. If you don’t take care of those crusty emotions first thing, you will find yourself attracting more experiences to feel crusty about throughout the rest of your day.

A good way to replace negative thoughts is to think about what you are grateful for. Why not start your day thinking of a few things that are good in your life instead of focusing on the bad?

Remember, what you put your attention on grows, GOOD or BAD. When you feel gratitude towards someone or something you will attract more of that.

There are several ways to have an attitude of gratitude;

  • prayer
  • meditation
  • writing in a gratitude journal
  • or it can be as simple as making statements in your head or speaking them out loud while tapping.

Start your day thinking about something or someone you are grateful for and tap it IN. See what happens, you might be surprised!

morning rituals lemon water

3- Drink A Glass Of Lemon Water

Your body is the most dehydrated in the morning and when you are dehydrated, your blood is thicker, so your organs have to work harder.

It is so important to get water into your system, with or without lemons.

Drinking warm lemon water first thing in the morning is one of the easiest things you can do to improve your health.

  1. It doesn’t take long to prepare
  2. it’s inexpensive and there is nothing better than to wake up to the fresh invigorating smell of lemon.

 

Here are some of the many benefits of drinking a glass of lemon water daily:
● Helps keep the body at a normal pH level.
● Prevents bacteria buildup in the body.
● Relieves symptoms of indigestion, heartburn, bloating, and constipation.
● Digestive aid and liver tonic.
● Clears mucus and phlegm.
● Helps maintain healthy body weight.
● Help dissolve kidney and gallstones.
● Gives your skin a healthy glow.

Get more facts and details here.

morning rituals meditation

4- Meditate

Meditation is something I have struggled with a bit, but the more I do it, the easier it is getting.

There are so many different styles of meditation out there. I recommend trying several different methods and finding what works for you. You can spend anywhere from 5 – 90 minutes meditating. Some even do it longer than that.

I recommend starting with a short guided meditation. One of my first experiences with a long meditation was not good. Before I was finished, I thought I was going to have an anxiety attack. (It was a 90-minute meditation). It takes some time to work up to being in a place of total stillness. I love it now! 

I believe you can also get into a meditative state without having to sit in the lotus position. (Common way to sit while meditating).

Walking, painting, or just taking a few moments to sit and quiet the mind are great ways I believe you can meditate.

Whatever meditation format you use, I do recommend it be part of your morning rituals.

Taking time to be still, physically and mentally is a VERY HEALTHY THING and so needed in our world today.


Go easy, start with a short meditation, be open-minded and give it a whirl.

morning rituals rebounding

5- Rebounding

This is something I swear by, and it’s part of my morning rituals.

Who would have thought that bouncing on a little trampoline could do anything for you?

Well, I am here to tell you, by experience, that it can!

Rebounding provides benefits to nearly every body system, from increased flexibility and skin tone to decreased stress.

Its up-and-down movement improves circulation and lymphatic flow and gently massages the internal organs for whole-body health.

I keep my rebounder in my closet where it is easily accessed or under my bed.

Most days I will turn on my Pandora playlist and listen to 2-3 songs while I jump and then I am off for a little yoga or other things.

Some days I will jump longer and some days I will just pop on there for only a few minutes to shake things up. You can find out more about it here in a previous post.

morning rituals skin brushing

6- Dry Skin Brushing

Here is another gem that I highly recommend!

Again, it is one of those things that does not cost a lot of money, is simple to do, does not take a lot of time, and is chuck full of benefits. Here are a few of the many benefits.

● Stimulates blood and lymph flow
● Helps eliminate toxins from the body
● Removes dead skin cells
● Encourages cells to regenerate
● Helps combat cellulite
● Results in smooth glowing skin
● Anti-aging through cell regeneration
● Strengthened immune system
● Stimulated nervous system, toned muscles, and tightened skin
● Stimulates both the sweat and sebaceous glands (contributing to the restoration of moist and supple skin)

Skin brushing has been one of my morning rituals for quite some time. I can tell a big difference in my skin and in the way that I feel.

To get the scoop on how to do it, I have a few previous posts that you can check out here.

morning rituals cold showers

7- Ending Your Shower Cold

Yep, you heard it right, and you may be asking why in the world would I torture myself with cold water first thing in the morning.

Here are four good reasons why you may want to add this to your morning rituals.

1-Better Circulation

Warm water makes the blood rush to your skin, and cool water makes the blood rush to your organs and glands.

This switching between hot and cold triggers better circulation throughout your whole body.

COLD water stimulates blood flow to the CORE of the body, thus bringing FRESH blood to the organs and glands and ALL parts of the Body!

This means, OXYGEN & NUTRIENTS IN and TOXINS & PATHOGENS OUT!

2-Better Looking Skin

When you shower with warm water, it opens up your pores. After washing it is a good idea to close the pores with cold water.

This will prevent the pores from being clogged with dirt and oil, preventing skin acne and other irritating skin conditions.

Another benefit is that cold water makes your blood vessels constrict which reduces swelling and the appearance of dark circles under your eyes.

3- Healthier Hair

Cold water makes your hair look healthier and shinier. The cold water closes the cuticle which makes the hair stronger and prevents dirt from easily accumulating on your scalp.

4- Mental Benefits

Cold water energizes you and invigorates your entire being with the essence of life.

Give it a try, you will definitely feel more alive! It can also lift you up if you are feeling a little down or unmotivated.

I love it because it gives you that same invigorating feeling of jumping in a cold running river or jumping off the boat to go water skiing. (a little shock, but a good refreshing shock).

DON’T TORTURE YOURSELF.  Start with a level of cold you can deal with, and slowly make it colder after each shower.

Make it a habit to end your shower COLD or at least COOL!

Let the cold water run over your scalp, face, the front of your body, then down your back, or you can just turn down the hot water and stand back and put your hands in and splash your face and the front of your body.

Give it a try!  You will be hooked!

morning rituals berry smoothie

8- Eat A Healthy Breakfast

I know everyone has different body systems and different nutritional requirements, but most everyone can benefit from a good healthy breakfast.

There are many philosophies and beliefs out there about food and nutrition and it can get really confusing about what you “should” be eating. Am I right?

What is important is that you find foods that support your system, foods that sustain you, make you feel energized and clear, and eat them for breakfast.

morning rituals berry smoothieHere is a breakfast berry smoothie that I have for breakfast frequently because it sustains me.

I feel like it has a lot of nutritional value, and it works for me.

morning rituals muesli breakfast bowlAnother one of my breakfast favorites is this muesli recipe.

Think outside the box. What you have to eat first thing in the morning does not have to be traditional “breakfast” food. Sometimes I have some bone broth, soup, or leftovers from dinner the night before.

Whatever you do, give your body some good fuel to start your day.

So now you have heard what my favorite morning rituals are, now it’s your turn to contemplate and decide what works for you.

Jan Howell

Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

Read More

Move Your Body

move your body

Improving your health one healthy habit at a time!

move your body

Move Your Body

Just as running water does not freeze,
moving muscles and joints will not either!

The topic of the exercise was included in a booklet I wrote titled “Alternative Remedies for the Body, Mind & Spirit.”  The Webster’s Dictionary defines ‘remedy’ as a medicine, application, or treatment that relieves or cures a disease.  I listed it as a remedy because I feel it is just that, a remedy.

 
Years ago, after being diagnosed with a particular health condition and finding that running and aerobics were too harsh on my body system, I had to find another way to move my body. After trying my first yoga class, I was hooked and have been doing it ever since. It has helped me immensely on my path back to health and vitality.
 
Unlike the blood circulatory system, which is pumped by the heart, the lymphatic system relies on the contraction of muscles to drain the lymphatic wastes back into the bloodstream via lymph nodes. Exercise will help you stay well by helping your lymphatic system out. It doesn’t matter what form of exercise you do; all that matters is that you MOVE YOUR BODY! Doing something DAILY if you can. The body needs three types of exercise: Cardiovascular, Strength Training (Muscular Strength & Endurance), and Flexibility Training.
Cardiovascular Exercise, involves continuous, rhythmic movements of large-muscle groups, such as rebounding (cellersizer which I swear by), walking, jogging, biking, aerobics, dancing and hiking. Ideally, this needs to be done 3-5 days a week.
 
Strength Training, sometimes called weight training or resistance training decreases the risk of osteoporosis and maintains muscle mass and function.  Alternate these exercises with your cardio workouts and make sure to get all muscle groups to keep your body balanced. 
 

Flexibility Training, will help with the  ability to move the joints through their full range of motion. Pain free, flexible joints are important to good health and lifestyle.  Inactivity causes us to become stiff and inflexible. It is amazing how fast you can lose range of motion. Stiffness leads to improper posture that can lead to muscle imbalance, which causes a lot of other problems. An example of a great flexibility program is yoga.  I LOVE yoga!  Flexibility exercises can be done daily and should be done at least 2-3 days per week.  If you stretch just once a week, you will never progress, but always be just catching up. I could go on and on about this, but I will spare you until a later date.

Some days you may wake up and not feel like doing anything, let alone exercising.  Maybe you feel achy, or you just don’t feel right. Those are the days you need to do something.  Maybe it will be just a little stretching, or a short walk, but move your body in some way. The only time I can honestly say that I didn’t feel good after exercising was when I attended a vigorous yoga class at the onset of the flu.  It was a little too much for my system, when I should have been resting.  Other than that, I have ALWAYS felt great both physically and mentally after moving my body.
 
People of all ages and abilities, and sizes can exercise.  Some may feel that their health is too compromised to be able to do any kind of exercise.  They may be thinking “I’m too fat”, “I’m not flexible enough”, “my body is too achy”, “I don’t have enough energy,” or “I have bad knees.” and on and on.  I want you to know that we can all do something!  Exercises can be modified and diluted to fit your needs.  I teach a class at the senior center in my community where I show them how to use a chair to support themselves while doing exercises and yoga poses.  Despite their limitations, they do amazing things.  I have seen them improve dramatically both physically and mentally!
 
Whatever you do, do not compare yourself to anyone else.  Listen to your body. We all have different bodies, different lifestyles, and different experiences.  If you have limitations, it is easy to become frustrated.  Do not get discouraged, accept where you are at and enjoy what you CAN do. Each time you exercise you will feel different. One day you might have a lot of energy and on other days you may not. Adjust accordingly and do what feels good.
Mayo Clinic. com gives 7 basic benefits for exercise that I liked. It is simple and straight forward.
 
1. Exercise improves your mood.
2. Exercise combats chronic diseases.
3. Exercise helps you manage your weight.
4. Exercise strengthens your heart and lungs.
5. Exercise promotes better sleep.
6. Exercise can put the spark back into your sex life.
7. Exercise can be — gasp — fun!
 
Studies show exercise to not only help us physically but it helps us maintain mental fitness as well.  Exercise releases endorphins in the brain, which in turn cause us to have what is commonly know as a “natural high” or a “runners high”.

Here are some of the Psychological Benefits of Exercise stated in an article by K. Cossaboon

    • Physical activity is increasingly becoming part of the prescription for the treatment of depression and anxiety. Exercise alone is not a cure, but it does have a positive impact.

 

    • Research has found that regular physical activity appears as effective as psychotherapy for treating mild to moderate depression. Therapists also report that patients who exercise regularly simply feel better and are less likely to overeat or abuse alcohol and drugs.
    • Exercise can reduce anxiety – many studies have come to this conclusion. People who exercise report feeling less stressed or nervous. Even five minutes of aerobic exercise (exercise which requires oxygen, such as a step class, swimming, walking) can stimulate anti-anxiety effects.
    • Physical exercise helps to counteract the withdrawal, inactivity and feelings of hopelessness that characterize depression. Studies show that both aerobic and anaerobic exercise (exercise which does not require oxygen, such as weightlifting) have anti-depressive effects.
    • Moods such as tension, fatigue, anger and vigor are all positively affected by exercise.
    • Exercising can improve the way you perceive your physical condition, athletic abilities and body image. Enhanced self-esteem is another benefit.
    • Last, but not least, exercise brings you into contact with other people in a non-clinical, positive environment. For the length of your walk or workout or aqua-fit class, you engage with people who share your interest in that activity.

 

I have been teaching yoga for many years and could go on and on about the benefits of exercise, and about the positive changes I have seen in my students, both physically and mentally.
 
Choose a form of exercise you enjoy!

 

    • Walking
    • AEROBICS
    • TREAD MILL
    • ROLLER BLADE
    • TAI CHI
    • SWIMMING
    • JOGGING
    • WATER AEROBICS
    • CYCLING
    • HIKING
    • KICK BOXING
    • MINI TRAMP (REBOUNDING)
    • TENNIS
    • YOGA
    • DANCING
    • POWER WALKING
    • RACQUET BALL
    • Rebounding
      Start today, CHOOSE to do something for yourself, no one can exercise for you.  By exercising you will not only help yourself, but those you associate with and love will benefit, as you release stress, improve health

and enjoy your life more fully!

Jan Howell

Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

Read More