The First 30 Minutes of Your Day to Cultivate Clarity & Energy
Waking up for many can be a slog. With so much artificial light, phone and TV distractions, being overworked, over scheduled and the wright of general stress, it's understandable that you may not want to shoot out of bed in the morning.
But the truth is, the first 30 minutes of your day are unbelievably important and impactful on your whole day. How energized you are, happy and even how easily (or not easily) you fall asleep at night.
Creating a morning routine to try and redirect your efforts can work for a few days but it might be too big to sustain right away. For my love of breaking things down into manageable bites, I just want to focus on the first 30 minutes of your morning and leave out breakfast, exercise, and a mindfulness practice.
Let's look at 5 habits that all take less than 5 minutes to accomplish in the morning.
1. Wake up early with no snooze. "Early" is relative but ideally right before or during sunrise. This varies during the seasons in relation to when you need to be up. Waking up with the sun aligns your circadian clock with natures clock. This (hands down) is where you get natural energy. It may not feel that way in the beginning so you need to incentivize yourself to get up. Never leave your alarm/phone in arms reach from the bed. Leave it the night before in a place where you have to physically get up to turn it off. In another room is ideal.
If you have trouble getting up because you are not in a good emotional/mental space in your life, I feel you and I've been there. Getting out of bed can be the toughest thing you do all day but you need to feel remind yourself that discipline is freedom and that the next couple steps in this 30 minute routine will help lower anxiety and boost your energy. Dig deep and get up.
2. Go to the bathroom. Next, make your way to the bathroom to pee and poop. If a poop doesn't happen right away don't sweat it and keep moving forward. Wash your hands and splash your face with cool water. This habit is pretty straight forward but simply relieving yourself and rinse with water helps you take on the characteristics of water to be fluid, cool and powerful moving into your day.
3. Clean your mouth. Brush your teeth (yes, before eating breakfast) and tongue scrape. Why? Over night while you sleep your body goes into detox mode, your liver goes into overdrive and starts to eliminate toxins through various channel, one being your mouth. That's why you might wake up with bad breath or a heavy/swollen tongue. Brushing and scraping help remove undigested food and toxins physically from the body before you swallow them back down drinking or eating.
4. Drink warm water. After you've cleaned your mouth and removed toxins, it's time to flush and hydrate the body with a big glass of warm water. And not just any water but either filtered, or pre-boiled with minerals. I personally love using a Berkey water filter in my tiny house to have charcoal filtered water always on hand. If you don't want to invest in a filter system, boiling your water and letting it cool is an awesome option too and adding a pinch of celtic or pink himalayan sea salt for added minerals.
Pour yourself a big glass of water (this isn't an exact science in terms of how many ounces, it's different for everyone, but enough to make you feel very full, between 20-30 ounces ;) and drink enough to stimulate a bowel movement. The water will help flush toxins down and rinse your colon. The goal is to poop. If you don't try going for a short walk, squatting or adding gentle natural laxatives like flaxseed, soaked chia seeds or aloe vera juice. You can also try drinking a small, warm glass of milk with a teaspoon of melted ghee and drink 30 minutes before bed. It will help ready your poop for the morning. It's amazing how well it works!
5. Go outside for natural light. It's time to get some sunshine! For at least 3-5 minutes step outside (better yet, go for a short walk) to get some natural light through your skin and eyes. This is a great time to not wear sunscreen, a hat or sunglasses. Allow your body to soak in the light (no matter how sunny or cloudy is it) to lower anxiety, make it easier to fall asleep, and receive a burst of energy that follows you the whole day.
If you want 5 more foundational habits to add to the rest of your day, grab this freebie wellness starter kit: 6 Vital Habits to Live by Everyday