Waking up on the right side

It is sometimes hard to establish a morning routine, not least of all when we feel that we have more to accomplish than time to achieve said accomplishments. Instead of peacefully emerging into the day with practices that center our thoughts, focus our efforts and create a foundation for productivity we race headlong into the first thing on a (usually long) list of ‘must dos’.

Responsibilities though freely accepted, that have come to weigh heavily on our (shoulders and) minds. ‘Yes’s’ that should have been ‘No’s’ or at the very least ‘let me think about it’.

Periodically I find myself straying from my self-imposed, cathartic morning routine. Not quite feeling myself, seeking motivation I go to bed with a mental note to start the next day with a reboot of the practices that always bring me back to myself and a calmer state of being.

Morning Pages

While Julie Cameron in ‘The Artists Way’ suggested three pages is a must I’m not so prescriptive. I find that defining how much I must write hinders rather than helps. Some mornings I can right what feels like a novella. Other times a sentence or two. A statement of intent or purposeful missive solidifies my intent, ignites my purpose and, either announces the days focus or frees it from distraction.

Longhand. A keyboard doesn’t seem to allow the same stream of consciousness flow that a pen in hand does.

Lemon & Ginger

Fresh ginger root, peeled & sliced + juice of ½ a lemon + boiling water.

Let it infuse in a mug for 2-3 minutes, cradle the mug in your hands, inhale deeply – it does have aromatherapy properties, gently blow and sip slowly.

Much has been written of its pH balancing and antioxidant effects.

Gingers active ingredient ‘zingiber’ is able to eliminate bacterial pathogens that can compromise the digestive function. Hence why it’s widely used to sooth nausea. Introduce lemon with its ability to reduce indigestion and you can affect positive nutrient absorption.

More…both have been recognized as increasing cognitive function through reducing stress and improving concentration. Their antioxidant effects combine to provide the benefit of reducing oxidative stress having the potential to lower the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.

Sun Salutations

Surya Namaskar.

The number most often cited as ideal is 12 but like morning pages I don’t start with a number in mind. Instead I consciously push through the desire to stop at boredom or discomfort and focus on achieving flow.

Like namaste the Sanskrit word namaskar stems from namas, which means “to bow to” or “to adore.”

Surya = the Sun.

The sequence of asanas that are Surya Namaskar utilize each of the body’s major muscle groups, stretching and strengthening them through flexion and extension. Each movement is initiated by the breath; an inhale or exhale which creates a fluid movement through the postures allowing prana to flow. The sequence is said to awaken the energy of our Inner Sun.

No matter how your day might unfold make sure you choose how it starts.