Up at 5 AM- Key part of my wellness journey!
I have always considered myself a morning person, however last year I began to shift my focus from just waking up early to establishing a series of practices before 7 AM that nourished my mind and body.
As a single mom of two tweens, my mornings tended to be rushed and with very little attention to self-care, except for a quick shower and cup of coffee.
Once I began to purposefully wake up at 5 AM with a set of intentional practices that I repeated every day, with certain variations, I began to feel centered and nurtured by my morning rituals.
These daily intentions give me a sense of stability and control of my day. If the day becomes challenging, I know I have already done several things to care for both my mind and body.
I will be sharing with you the 5 things I do before 7 AM each morning that have significantly impacted my mental and physical wellbeing. As mentioned above, a little over a year ago, I began waking up at 5 A.M., regardless of what time my first official task of the day was scheduled. At the time, my children were waking up at around 6:30-7, which is why I dedicated the hours of 5 AM to 7 AM for my daily personal start. The decision and ultimately this change to an early morning start has significantly impacted my overall wellbeing by improving many aspects of my life and I am sharing the 5 things I do daily before 7 am in hopes you may find them helpful as well.
1. Make my bed/ Tidy up
Upon awakening I take deep breaths, turn on all my lights (sending a signal to my brain that it’s morning) and immediately get out of bed to tidy my space. I do so primarily out of habit (type A personality) but also because if nothing else got accomplished, my bed was made and my space feels clean and peaceful.
After brushing my teeth and washing my face, I drink my water with lemon (using a straw, it helps trust me). Seems simple but I had never thought to do this and it gives me a boost of subtle energy from the start.
3. Stretch / Exercise
There is no other time of the day when exercise is as focused and productive for me than in the early hours. I have no distractions, no excuses. Nobody needs me more than me. My wellness journey is ongoing and this practice has supported all of my personal goals with the desired results.
4. Journal/ Read
Between 6:30 and 7AM, I have completed my stretching, workout or meditation. I dedicate a few moments to journaling and reading a chapter of a current book. By this time, in the summer, the sun is rising so I take the opportunity to sit outside for 10 minutes or so of indirect sunlight.
My journaling in the morning is focused on my gratitude practice. It clears my mind and allows my heart to feel abundant (I will be sharing more on the benefits of journaling).
5. Map out the day/ Identify Top 3
I take a few minutes every morning to review my ‘Map of the day.’ It is a single-page system that has been working for me for some time now. It provides me with ‘at a glance’ view of exactly what is happening that day for myself and my children. I also identify the top three key items that require my attention for the day. I try to at least tackle the first item early on in the morning and move from there. For more productivity ideas you can check out my post on ‘5 simple habits to ease into Mondays’.
Once I am done with my morning routine, I jump in the shower and get myself ready for the day. I have started challenging myself to cold showers in the morning. Studies have shown the benefits of early morning cold exposure on many fronts. As a Florida girl, I have to admit this is not an easy one but I’m getting there. At around this time of the morning, my children and my puppy start their morning routines as well and our home begins to get busy with conversation and the sounds of the family.
I have pushed my first cup of coffee for later in the morning, as recommended by Professor Andrew Huberman of the Huberman Lab Podcast. I am finding it allows for greater focus during those first couple of hours of work.
Please know that this is a fluid process and everything does not happen perfectly every day. My aim is to do my personal best and establish a routine that evolves and benefits me and my family.
I would love to hear your feedback on your morning routine and about your wellness journey. Feel free to comment below or a DM on my IG @onelittlenote. You can also contact me here.
To learn more about me, visit the ‘About’ page linked here.
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