Mindfulness is on the rise these days and for good reason. Being mindful throughout your day can set the tone for your entire week. More often than not, most people’s fears and stresses are about things that have already happened or may be happening in the future. We tend to panic so much about things that are not actually happening in our present moment. Doign this takes away from our present joy. Mindfulness means being fully aware of the now, living entirely in the moment, and being fully aware of everything around you. So how do you hone in on all of this awesomeness? I’ve compiled 8 of the best ways to start your mindful day before your feet even hit the ground.
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Start your day with gratitude
The best way to declutter your mind of all its worries and stressors is to remind yourself of each and every individual thing you have to be thankful for. Feel free to be as obnoxious and specific with this as you possibly can.
Take the time to appreciate anything that took place the previous day that you really enjoyed. Don’t think big. Instead focus on tiny little gratitudes that only you get to enjoy.
Small gratitude ideas
- Your son’s laugh when you watched his favorite movie
- Getting to read to your kids in bed last night
- A kiss from your spouse first thing in the morning
- The sound of your dog snoring
- Only peeing once in the middle of the night
Just starting your day by saying out loud the things you are thankful for instantly sets the tone for the rest of the day. You could even take it one step further and write down 5-10 things you are grateful for each day.
Start with journaling
Keeping a journal right next to your bed is a genius way to start waking up without actually jumping out of bed. Chances are you might be in the habit right now of reaching for your phone and scrolling social media. Instead, try reaching for a tool that can help you be productive and start your day of mindful.
There are amazing, beautiful planner available like the ones at Silk + Sonder that have mindfulness practices and gratitude prompts built right in! If you love the idea of waking up, setting an intention for the day, click here to see the available planner options.
The benefits of writing it down
In an article shared by Forbes, it staes that by simply writing down your goals you are 1.2 or 1.4 times more likely to see success with those goals.
Whether it’s goals, gratitude or inention setters, there is so much benefit in writing it down.
Writing things down consistently sort of re-wires our brains. Taking a moment each morning to write down your gratitude can drastically improve your outlook on life and even aid in depression. Browse the Silk + Sounder journals.
Wake up from head to toe
A great way to begin mindfulness is by really being fully aware of your body. To do this, you can start by taking time to feel each part of your body.
With your eyes closed, take the time to wiggle your toes. Put your focus only on them.
Can you JUST move your toes without incorporating any other part of your foot?
Slowly, start rolling your ankles to move your feet. Notice how your feet feel on the sheets.
After your ankles, flex your calf muscles then your thighs.
Work your way up your entire body paying attention to each individual piece of you.
When you have taken the time to be fully aware of each part of your body, let it work together to stretch and squirm and start waking up.
- As you start flexing your muscles, flex them as long and as hard as you can for 10 seconds and then just let go.
- Don’t rush this. Go as slowly as you want.
- When tightening your muscles for 10 seconds, try holding your breath too.
- When breathing breath in your nose and let a BIG exhale out your mouth
Chime into the day
This is a mindfulness trick I used to use with kids in my fitness and yoga classes.
Using the sound of a chime, bell or gong can really help clear your mind and direct your focus. Apple has a great app called Gong! This app simply plays the sound of a gong.
Close your eyes, pay attention and quiet your mind, paying attention to the sound of the gong. The sound slowly fades out and when the sound is completely gone take a moment to stretch. Tap the gong again and repeat the same process.
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Create a “mixtape”
You know that feeling you get when you favorite song starts to play? It just boosts you right up, right?
Well, have your favorite song or playlist ready and raring to go at the start of each day. Maybe you have one song that will really motivate you for what you have going on this particular day.
Let yourself listen to the words, even if you’re dancing in your bed while you do it.
Music has been proven to reduce stress, calm anxieties and even bring back the memory of those suffering from diseases like Alzheimer’s. Don’t underestimate the power of what positive lyrics are capable of.
Wake up your senses
I don’t know about you, but I am a slow riser. Taking the time to slowly and enjoyably wake up each morning is one of the best ways to enter your day with mindfulness and joy.
Thankfully, there are so many awesome tools these days that can help you do exactly that.
If you have a coffee maker, set it on a timer so that when you wake up, you get to breathe in the smell of a fresh pot of coffee brewing just for you.
There is so much proof showing that waking up to sunlight helps you wake up better and subsequently sleep better at night! Now, it’s a bit frivelous, but you can actually purchase a Blinds Automation Kit that hooks up to your current blinds. This way you can slowly open your blinds as you slowly allow your body to walk up. Yes, please!
Choosing a soothing song as your alarm clock is another way to slowly wake up your senses. My person go-to is “Get Up” by Shinedown
Listen to your breath
Lastly, and probably most importantly is to remember to just pay attention to your breath.
You can lie in bed with your hand on your stomach just paying full attention to your breath going in and going out. This is also a great technique when it comes to falling asleep at night.
I get that some morning are more chaotic than others and you may find yourself with no time to listen to a gong or wiggle your toes. No matter what, just take big, long, full deep breaths. This will help wake up your brain, slow your heart rate and get you started on ther right foot.
I am a big fan of audiobooks. Particularly the self-help genre. Instead of waking up and scrolling Instagram in the morning, I switched to playing Everything is Figureoutable by Marie Forleo.
Tapping the play button while I lay in bed helps me tune into her words — which are uplifting and ecouraging.
Having this kind of motivation sets the tune for my entire day.
One other technique that has been shared by the great Tony Robbins, is just reminiscing in a very deep way.
Think of a time in your life when you were your happiest. One of your best moments.
Close your eyes.
Take a deep breath.
Put youreslf back in that place.
Feel what you felt.
See what you saw.
Smell what you smelled.
For just a minute, allow yourself to re-live that beautiful, happy moment in time.
Doing this helps you create more joy in your present and helps you get out of bed with a smile on your face.