Fighting Stress with Healthy Morning Routines
Stress sucks! That’s something we all know. It can cause acne, hair loss, weight gain, weight loss and a host of other health problems. Put simply, it can make you feel crazy and overwhelmed at EVERYTHING! But, there is a way to combat stress.
Routines and organization is the best way to deal with stress throughout the day. And what better time to start with a routine, then first thing in the morning! Setting the tone for the day starts the minute you open your eyes. If you aren’t careful, stress can rear it’s ugly little face into your sights before you can do anything about it.
So just how do you combat stress first thing in the morning? Well. I’ll tell you!
Here are my top tips to get you started in creating your own morning routine to help alleviate stress.
Stop Hitting Snooze
If you’re one of those people that keep hitting the snooze button in an attempt to get more sleep, you’re probably not going to like what you’re about to read. When you press that snooze button over and over again, you are causing yourself to have less time to prepare for the day. That alone can cause some stress. If you’re like me and need five or six alarms timed to go off 15 minutes apart, try setting them a little earlier than when you actually need to wake up. This will allow you to be able to hit that snooze button (once or twice – not 10!) and still get up on time. Having to rush in the morning is a breeding ground for high stress levels throughout the day. That snooze button is just not worth it.
Don’t Constantly Check Your Phone
Constantly checking your phone, whether its social media or emails, can cause those stress levels to heighten. Checking your phone right after waking up overloads your brain causing stress by trying to wake up faster. Try not checking your phone until you’re on your way out or about to leave. It will allow your mind the time it needs to wake up on its own and do it calmly.
We often forget, but good quality breathing is so important. Learning to calm yourself through breathing exercises will help fight away the stress that hits in the form of panic attacks and anxiety attacks or plain old stress. Take in deep breaths while counting to five and then exhale counting to five. Doing this helps to gain control of the situation which alleviates the feeling of being overwhelmed and stressed by everything going on around you. Doing this in the morning before you even get out of bed is a great way to prepare your mind for all the tasks you need to tackle.
Repeat An Affirmation
Saying kind things to yourself about yourself will definitely make you happy and keep those pesky stress levels at bay. And it can be anything that makes you feel positive like “I am grateful for my life”, “I begin my life today”, “I am kind”, or “I am beautiful”. It really just depends on you and what you need/want to hear. The moment you start to feel like you’re being flooded with too much and become overwhelmed, take a breath and repeat your affirmation. This will help calm you and also help keep you positive and motivated to get through the day.
Eat A Good Breakfast
We’ve all been told that Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But there is science and plenty of studies that can prove it. In fact, A British study taken in 2012 found that “people who ate breakfast reported feeling 89% less anxious in challenging situations later that day, and were able to deal with dilemmas 7% faster than on days they skipped their A.M. meal” ("12 Morning Tricks To Set Yourself Up For A Much Less Stressful Day"). So, make sure you not only eat breakfast, but that you eat a HEALTHY breakfast. Doing this will increase your brain function and reaction and allow you to focus more on the tasks you need to tackle each day.
Make A List for Productivity
Early on in the morning, try to focus on all your high-concentration tasks. This includes things like writing reports, seeing patients, managing finances or anything else that might require more focus and/or creativity. The best way to put those things in order of how much concentration they require is to make a list. After you complete one of the tasks, cross it off. Doing this will alleviate the feeling of being overwhelmed and flooded with tasks throughout your day.
So, there you have it.
If you are fighting stress each day or even every once in a while, you can decrease the amount of stress you feel just by sticking to a good healthy and quality morning routine.
What does your morning routine look like? Need to develop a morning routine?
Designing my mornings was all because of the book Miracle Mornings by Hal Elrod. This life changing book made me see how I was creating a stress filled day by starting it in a rush. Reading it and adopting the principles that worked for me shifted my business and my health back in 2014......right when I needed it! Suffering from daily migraines, neck pain and going to numerous doctors who didn't see my pain.......basically telling me it was not there or I didn't feel it. Well HELLO more stress.
Hal Elrod is an inspiring guy.
At 20 years old he was hit head on by a drunk driver. At 70 mph. (Ouch.)
He was found dead. (Yikes.) After 6 minutes of that (near-)death experience, he spent several days in a coma and awoke to discover he had suffered brain damage and was told that he may never walk again. He defied the odds and proved we’re all capable of overcoming obstacles while creating the life of our dreams. (Amazing.)
Years later, he found himself in a funk and discovered The Morning Miracle. And, here we are!
“I believe it is crucial for us to embrace the perspective that anything another person has overcome or accomplished is simply evidence that anything—and I mean anything—we need to overcome or want to accomplish is possible for us, no matter what our past or current circumstance. It begins with accepting total responsibility for every aspect of your life and refusing to blame anyone else. The degree to which you accept responsibility for everything in your life is precisely the degree of personal power you have to change or create anything in your life.” ~Hal Elrod
Most recently he beat cancer and I find him totally amazing and inspiring! What he did do to beat cancer? Read the story HERE
The Steps of Routine of the Miracle Morning
I’ve been using the Simply Being to do guided meditations during the Silence period. This is helping me with my breathing and focus. I love it!
I created a couple different affirmations for my own journey.. and in books I’ve read that I wanted to use. So, I created a new note in my iPhone titled ‘Affirmation’ and when it’s time, I open the note and read aloud my affirmations. They then become habit.......post it notes on the bathroom mirror for daily reminders later in the day!
Although the guided meditations I listen to on App are sometimes visualizations, I still always do further visualizations at this time. Visualizing how I want my day to go, relationships, conversations and business.
I wait and do my exercise at the very end since I do this every each morning. This differs from what The Miracle Morning outlines, since The Miracle Morning is designed to be finished in 60 minutes or so. However, my fitness routine was set before I started The Miracle Morning so the additional time I spend there is just by choice.
I’ve been reading The Art of Non-Conformity by Chris Guillebeau and, wow, what a perfect book to be reading while starting The Miracle Morning! As the title indicates, this book is all about creating a lifestyle that goes against the status quo and it certainly gives me that additional pep in my step to jump out of bed each morning to complete The Miracle Morning. The time passes so quickly while reading.
I think my biggest takeaway is that setting aside designated reading time each day (with zero distractions) is vital for me and my personal reading goals. I also make time after lunch to read a book for the help of my business or a client.....Right now it's You Can Heal your Body by Louise Hay!
Much Love Suzanne
PS. Have questions about developing your morning routine or creating ritual in your life, I would love to answer......ask below in the comments!