THE MORNING MOOD: THE SECRET TO A SUCCESSFUL DAY

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This proverb says: “What nine months of care accomplishes for an embryo, forty early mornings alone will do for your progressively expanding completeness.” ~Rumi

Manicures, baths, and relaxing evenings spent watching movies on the sofa are all examples of activities that may be classified as self-care. I think we can all agree on this point. But I am of the opinion that the time has come—in fact, the time has passed—to go deeper and reclaim the meaning of self-care in its most essential form. It is also time to recognize the importance of practicing self-care and to elevate this activity from its current position at the bottom of our list of things to accomplish to its rightful place at the very top.

For me, taking care of myself has turned into both my fuel and my fire. When I make sure to schedule time on my calendar on a consistent basis for activities such as play, time with my sister, and self-reflection, I am able to maintain a connection with both myself and the things to which I genuinely want to give my approval or refusal.

Taking care of myself entails decluttering my thoughts by writing in a notebook every day and working out regularly at the gym. It’s about having the conversation with my spouse in which I explain why I won’t be able to prepare supper for us tonight: “My darling, I need to go spend some time by myself and take a bath after a hard day.” And doing so without feeling any remorse.

And the remarkable thing is that the more time I carve out for myself, the more I have to give to the people I care about the most and the more tolerance I have for them. Do you see how it might work? The more I invest in myself, the more I am able to contribute to the lives of others around me from a position of plenty.

We would never even consider driving across the nation without making pit stops for food, beverages, and gas, much alone attempting to complete the trip with an empty tank. Despite this, we seem to be under the impression that we can keep going despite our own weariness without suffering any repercussions.

When I look back on my own journey from physically, emotionally, and spiritually falling apart to reclaiming myself on all levels, I see that it all started with a decision to stop caring so much about what other people thought and to make my own wellness, happiness, and voice priorities again. When I look back on my own journey, I see that it all began with a choice to stop caring so much about what other people thought.

I started to see that when I gave myself permission to stand up for myself in the time, even if my voice was trembling, I was able to leave the discussion with a feeling of completeness, free of any residual emotions that were not respected. This was true even while my voice was quivering.

I ended up shouting at the customer service manager at Best Buy because I had so much pent-up grief and anger from stuffing things down and being polite when I didn’t speak my mind and held in my thoughts and needs. This happened because I didn’t speak my mind and held in my opinions and needs.

When I was truthful with myself about the requirements of my own self-care, I was able to be more genuine with the people in my immediate environment.

When it all began, it was more than ten years ago. Just then, I arrived to the preschool where I would be enrolling my kid. It dawned on me as I sat in my vehicle in front of the coffee shop where I had planned to spend a few hours working that I was unable to get out of the car, despite my best efforts.

I could feel the beginnings of tears forming in my eyes, but they weren’t quite ready to fall just yet. After all, there wasn’t really a reason for me to break down and weep, was there? We had a reliable source of money provided by my husband’s employment, my kid was in good health, my husband loved me, and I was free to start a company of my own.

Our house was cozy and well-furnished all around. We could always count on our family and friends for support. It is a fact that both my sister and my mother were located several thousand kilometers apart. In addition, my closest pals were located on the other shore. But happily, I had made a few new friends to share the early parenthood experience with, and those friends were a true blessing for me. They helped me feel less alone during that time. I have no doubt that they felt the same way about me.

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Nevertheless, there I was, sitting in my vehicle, unable to enter the coffee shop because I was paralyzed by a cloud of perplexity. My mind was racing with the thought, “Who the heck am I now? Where did the version of myself that I was so familiar with go? And who in the devil am I going to end up being?”

At that moment, I heard a ringing on my phone. It was my sister doing it (i.e. divine intervention). She inquired about my well-being, and that was all I had to know at that moment. The dams cracked, releasing a torrent of tears, and the floodgates were opened wide.

“What the heck is wrong??? Are you okay???” she inquired.

“Well, no, yes… well, everyone is OK, and so am I; it’s only that…

I have no idea what the devil I’m experiencing right now… I’m just… sad.” Allowing myself to weep and articulating what I was thinking out both provided some kind of release. It was as if someone had abruptly unscrewed a valve that had been screwed on too firmly.

During the course of our chat, I became aware of a facet of myself that I had been concealing for some time. This was the aspect of me that had been gradually relinquishing control over who I was as a person. The elements of me that were used to more freedom, greater expression, and less constraints in expressing my truth started to emerge when I became a wife, a mother, a resident of a new state, and a homeowner. This was especially the case when it came to speaking my truth. And this aspect of myself was furious, angry, depressed, and prepared to flee the scene.

But I was aware that there was no way I could ever go back to the person I was before I got married and had a child. I didn’t know how I was going to transition into all of these new responsibilities while still preserving a sense of who I was, so I couldn’t run forward because the ground in front of me had become unclear. And I couldn’t run ahead either because the ground behind me had become uncertain. All of my concentration was now concentrated on ensuring the survival of another human being and on fulfilling my role as the wife of the guy who had become the only member of my family in this new location.

I should have been fleeing, but instead I simply exploded, and since it occurred gradually and over time, I wasn’t even aware of it.

My mind and my to-do list had taken precedence over my body over the course of the last several years as I worked tirelessly to establish a successful company, bring up a child, and construct a new house. And now, at at this very now, after years of discomfort in my stomach and complete and utter tiredness, my body was prepared to once again be respected.

When we got back in the vehicle, my sister asked me the one question that would change the course of my life forever: “Do you feel like going to a yoga class?” That one question would forever alter the path that my life would take. She said that she recalled a period in our life when I was shouting from the rafters about how much I enjoyed practicing yoga. And I’ll be the first to confess that it had been years since I’d last stood at the top of my mat with my hands placed in front of my chest.

After I had finished sobbing, I reassured her that I would make it to my lesson on time.

The very next morning, I found myself in a stunning studio decorated in gold and azure blue, which would serve as my stable base for the subsequent two years.

Throughout the subsequent half year, I sobbed at some point throughout the majority of the yoga classes that I attended. And I gradually became aware that my body was returning to the present moment again. On that mat, I could feel the aspects of myself that I had been trying to conceal beginning to resurface and communicate with me. Each posture was gradually bringing me back to myself and reshaping me into the new version of myself that I was on the verge of becoming.

Ariane, my guru of a yoga instructor, presented me with the opportunity to participate in an intense yoga teacher training course after I had been practicing yoga for about six months. In spite of the fact that I had no interest in becoming a yoga instructor, my heart and body gave me an immediate yes.

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We got together every other Wednesday night and every other Saturday afternoon. This was the first time that I had ever committed to spending extended periods of time away from my kid. Even though I had heaped a lot of guilt on myself, I knew I had to go through with it. I was sure that it would be exactly what I need in order for me to genuinely be there when I was at home and to give my family the attention and care that they deserved.

The yoga teacher program required participants to make a daily practice commitment as one of the requirements of the course. To be more explicit, daily in the morning. My early sleep time was not something I was ready to give up since I was a mother of a small child who had not yet committed to a regular sleep routine.

But I put my faith in Ariane to be my instructor and leader. She showed me how to connect with my physical self and my emotions on a deeper level than I had ever given any thought to doing so before. She taught me how to notice my emotional triggers and how to release my tension via movement, writing, and meditations so that I would not retain it in my body for years to come. I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to work with her (as I had been doing all of my life). After much resistance, I came to the conclusion that I should at least give yoga in the morning a go.

I reasoned to myself, “I could forego those five minutes of sleep and begin there.” And that is precisely how everything first got started. During the first five minutes, the magic began to unfold.

During the first few days of my new morning commitment, which was to get up a bit earlier in order to meditate, exercise my body, and breathe, I became aware of a change inside myself. This change allowed me to see things more clearly.

I was able to detect that my level of tolerance with my kid was increasing. I was surprised to find that things that, in the past, would have driven me crazy were now making me laugh. My kid started to pick up on the fact that I was more at ease amid the shifts in our lives. Even when I was between three and four years old, dad informed me that I seemed to be happy. That was all the encouragement and inspiration I needed.

The next thing I did was make a commitment to doing this morning routine for 10 to fifteen minutes. And on the days when my kid got up earlier than usual, I made it a habit to leave a little basket of toys and books for him to play with while I completed what I needed to do. There were certainly certain mornings when all he wanted was for me to hold him or snuggle with him. And it didn’t bother me in the least.

I came to the realization that this was in fact an ongoing process, and that he wouldn’t remain four years old for the rest of his life. Getting rigorous about something that was supposed to help me discover greater pleasure and tranquility was not going to do anything useful.

My morning yoga practice evolved into the Magic Morning Mindset over the course of the next decade. This was due to the fact that I discovered that the more I practiced, the more I saw that synchronicity, laughter, abundance, and many other things started to come with ease and grace.

In my opinion, this is true for every single person. The morning is the best time to start taking better care of yourself mentally, physically, and spiritually since that is when you have the most energy.

There is always a benefit that extends beyond the morning hours associated with your morning mindset exercise, regardless of whether it is brief or extensive, involves yoga or dancing, includes writing for an hour or for just five minutes.

The way you begin each day seems to be indicative of how the rest of it will go. Beginning your day with the Magic Morning Mindset can help you feel more at ease, increase your pleasure, increase your sense of connection to yourself, and improve your ability to communicate what you need. You may reassure yourself that your requirements are important by making self-care a high priority and placing it at the top of your list of things to accomplish.

How Do I Achieve That Magical Morning Mindset?

M – Movement

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A – Alignment

G – Gratitude

I – Intuition (or Intention)

C – Connection

Where Do You Even Begin?

1. Before doing anything else, decide that you want to develop a Magic Morning Mindset that consists of three steps.

2. If you have trouble getting out of bed in the morning, make it a point to go to bed at a more reasonable hour (even fifteen to twenty minutes will make a difference)

3. Determine the activities that will benefit your mind, body, and spirit the most (you can find some ideas below).

4. Put yourself in a position to succeed by doing things the night before, such as laying out your yoga mat or getting your diary and a few pencils ready. (Over the course of my lifetime, I’ve gone through an unimaginable quantity of pens.)

5. Maintain a nice demeanor by beginning with only five minutes.

6. After you have completed the Magic Morning Mindset exercise, pay attention to how you feel for the rest of the day.

Here Are Some Suggestions To Get You Started.

Mind

Put your aspirations on paper.

Just start writing without correcting it, even if it seems incredibly strange and you end up penning sentences that don’t make any sense. Just start writing.

Create anywhere from ten to fifteen “I AM” statements, such as “I am devoted,” “I am loved,” “I am glad,” and “I am light.”

Write down any random ideas or thoughts that keep running through your head until you feel a little more at ease.

Keep a journal in which you record your thoughts, feelings, and experiences as they arise when you engage in these activities. This will allow you to reflect on your progress along the way.

Body

Play your favorite music as you get down and dance.

Perform three to five sun salutations as part of your yoga practice.

You should stretch and exercise in whatever manner that makes your body feel good.

You should do some jumping jacks and push-ups until you feel a warm glow throughout your body.

Keep a journal in which you record your thoughts, feelings, and experiences as they arise when you engage in these activities. This will allow you to reflect on your progress along the way.

Spirit

Take between three and five minutes to sit in silence and focus on your breathing.

Pick a kind of meditation that’s guided.

Meditate in whichever method appeals to you the most (there are countless resources).

Try sitting quietly for even just a minute at first, and notice how it affects you.

Keep a journal in which you record your thoughts, feelings, and experiences as they arise when you engage in these activities. This will allow you to reflect on your progress along the way.

You could first feel pleased about beginning your morning with some magic, but then you might discover that you have less time on some days than other days. This is a natural reaction to anything new that enters your life. During the last ten years that I have been putting my Magic Morning Mindset into practice, I’ve enjoyed lengthy periods of time in which I’ve felt energised and have been able to get up early enough to indulge in a sumptuous sixty to ninety minute morning practice. On other days, though, I’ve only been able to cram in somewhere between five and 10 minutes.

When I make the conscious decision to devote extra time to my morning routine, I am able to detect a distinct change in the rest of my day. But when I know I need to condense it, I don’t get upset with myself over it. The key to success is to have an open mind, maintain flexibility, and tackle things one day at a time.

You are affirming your commitment to your wellbeing and happiness, as well as your ability to maintain a connection with yourself, so long as you begin each morning by doing something significant for yourself.

Make this routine a part of your life and pay attention to the ways in which your day and your life change as a result of giving more importance to your own requirements and moving yourself closer to the top of your to-do list.

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