Ever had the experience of waking up and wishing you could do anything but what you had planned? Wishing you could stay in bed for the rest of the day and hide away from the novel length to do list waiting for you out in the sunlight?
I’ve been there.
It’s not fun at all to wake up too many days in a row wishing that your day included anything but the things you really had to do.
It took me a long time to realize that mornings weren’t dedicated to the hustle. I could decide how I spent my time, and my time didn’t have to involve all the things I hated. I want to share some of my favorite self-care morning rituals, in hopes that it will help you reclaim your mornings!
& yes, some of the links in this post may be affiliate links, which means I'd get commission if you purchase the item. But don't worry! I'm only suggesting these because I personally love them, and I genuinely think they'll be truly helpful to you.
1. Visualizing My Best Life
I love visualizing before I go to sleep. Some days I spend 5 minutes visualizing (especially if it’s difficult for me to shift into a positive emotional state for whatever reason… sometimes I spend 20 minutes visualizing if I’m really into it).
I do the same thing in the morning. It’s like having the best dream of your life and being frustrated that you woke up right before it got super amazing… except you don’t have to wake up. Visualizing allows you to control the trajectory of your imagination.
Spending 5-20 minutes jumping into my dream board in my mind lets me start my day feeling happy and excited for the amazing things to come.
Before my feet hit the ground I’ve spent a significant amount of time committing to my happiness and trusting in myself. After that, starting the rest of my day feels exciting.
2. Drinking Hot Water with Lemon or Black Coffee
I used to wake up and immediately jump into the work I had to do for the day. Feeling like there was never enough time. Feeling like the only important thing in my day was whatever work I needed to do to bring in money.
Eventually I got tired of this process. I felt like I was living to work and only to work. Nothing else mattered. Until I began waking up with the intention of putting myself first. Even if that meant waking up an hour earlier. I’d make time to visualize, and to make my hot water, and actually enjoy it!
I stopped drinking my water or coffee in the shower - multitasking like it was my last day on earth. I began being deliberate about my time and it made all the difference in my level of peace.
My best friend used to tell me to drink hot water with lemon first thing in the morning. She told me this for years. And for years I said “Okay. I’ll try it.” But instead I kept to my usual schedule of rushing and drowning myself in caffeine.
Until I encountered some digestive issues (at the hand of stress). I caved and decided to take time to wake up slowly. I made time for hot water and lemon. I made time to enjoy it and drink it with nothing else on my mind. I was surprised at how refreshing it was. How awake I felt after drinking it. How much better my stomach felt throughout the day.
I’ll still have coffee sometimes… (occasionally I’ll have both), but my biggest deciding factor is what makes me feel alive and happy.
3. Practicing Yoga
Practicing in the morning isn’t as easy for me as it is at night. Most of the time I still have to drag myself to the mat. And sometimes I don’t even get in my morning session. I try to tell myself to get in at least 10 minutes. Just do enough to stretch out your body and connect to my breath before I rush off into the day.
When I do I swear I feel the difference immediately. Why is it so difficult for us to do the things that we know make us feel better? I don’t know that I have the answer to this question. I just know that if I could keep my focus on feeling good - my decision making process would be so much easier!
Anyway, because I have a lot of resistance to practicing in the morning, I find that videos help me stay focused and committed to the practice. I’ve been playing this video for mornings when I just don’t feel like getting started. It’s only five minutes long and knowing that helps me get myself ready.
For mornings when I’m feeling less resistant, when I want to spend a little longer on the mat, I’ll play this video.
4. Listening to Tony Robbins or Abraham Hicks
If I’ve got something particularly negative I’m working through, or if I wake up on the wrong side of the bed, I like to get myself in gear with some Tony Robbins. You can scroll through the endless videos on youtube, but I don’t like to take the time to search and search for the right clip.
When I got really tired of spending ten minutes getting sucked into browsing youtube I ended up getting Tony Robbins’ Ultimate Edge Digital Coaching Program. I wish I would have gotten it sooner! I listen to his coaching and within minutes my entire perspective has shifted into something more positive. If you’re looking for something consistent and actionable to help you start your mornings with energy and perspective, I’d really recommend checking out the program.
The other thing I’ve been listening to / reading for the past couple of years is Abraham Hicks. If you’re interested in the law of attraction, and you want to immerse yourself in the laws of the universe, this book collection is an amazing resource to add to your morning routine. I love reading a couple of pages right after yoga to sync my thoughts with the lightness of my body and soul.
You can also watch the endless collections of Abraham Hicks videos on Youtube. I will warn you, if you’re hesitant to get into things that might seem a little “woo-woo” (I actually really don’t enjoy using that term…) but if that’s how you feel about things like the law of attraction, then Abraham Hicks might not be your cup of tea. But I’ll try not to spoil it for you. You can decide for yourself if the message resonates.
If you’re looking to really understand more about how your thoughts and emotions influence your experience, then Abraham Hicks would be a great place to learn and explore.
5. Sitting in Silence
Sometimes I feel like connecting a little more with my inner-knowing. No other speakers, no videos, no music… just me. Just me observing the world and enjoying the air around me. Watching the trees outside of my window. Listening to the birds sing in the morning. Focusing on my breath and giving thanks to everything for this gorgeous cycle of life happening at all times.
Sitting in silence can be a completely healing practice. If it’s just a morning when you need to get in touch with yourself - silence can be the answer. Sit with your hot water or tea… and focus on your breath. Focus on the nature around you. Focus on feeling and connecting with the energy of the universe. It will tell you everything you need to know.
6. Creating a Feelings Focused Music Playlist
My music routine in the morning is a little different than my nightly routine. I’m much more open to different genres in the morning. At night I want to get into a relaxed state of being. But in the morning, depending on how I’m feeling I might want a relaxed energy or an excited energy or a pumped up energy or a determined energy… I pick my music based on how well it aligns with what emotional state I want to be in.
My recommendation for your morning playlist is to focus on how you want to feel not what artist you want to listen to. I had to stop playing Beyonce’s album at a certain point because I realized it made me angry when I listened to it. There’s only so many times I can listen to a sassy, angry woman’s story about betrayal and finding her way back to love before I start to feel betrayed too… even though absolutely nothing happened to me!
When I don’t want to feel aggressive and sassy… I don’t listen to Beyonce’s Lemonade. I’ll throw on some Jack Johnson or Ed Sheehan. When I want to be in a romantic mood I'll put on Sade.
Once I’ve dedicated time to making myself feel good I can get into the rest of my day. My main focus during my morning self-care routine is to remind myself that I’m more than the work I have to do that day. That my time is worth more than money. That my wellbeing is more important than the habits I’ve created over the years.
I hope that you can crete a morning self-care routine that reminds you that you are valuable. That you deserve respect and happiness. And that you don’t have to wait for anyone else to give you that love and respect. You can give it to yourself in a way that works for you!
What’s the best part of your morning self-care routine? I’d love to hear about what you enjoy, or if anything on my list is something you want to add to your mornings.