Morning Routines and Finally Trying Meditation
I subscribe to the Enterprise Nation YouTube channel and they send me really personalised email updates of videos I might like; gosh they know me well! There's a lot of Chase Jarvis, which I love because he founded the online learning platform that I've learnt so much from over the last couple of years called CreativeLive, and he has a lot of insight into being a working creative (he is a well established commercial photographer) and making your own success. Anyway, one day earlier this year the video at the top of my email was 10 Healthy Morning Habits by Zoë Wild, otherwise known as Professional Wild Child. After listening to tons of interviews with various business people on the Tim Ferris Podcast, I knew there was a link between having a morning routine and becoming more productive and ultimately successful (they don't all have the same routine, they just all have one of some sort), so I was very up for giving this a go. Also, I used to be terrible in the mornings and I wanted to make the decision to just not be terrible anymore! This has really worked for me and what I love about it is that you can try different things and pick and choose which elements work for you, or start introducing them one-by-one. My personal favourite tips from the video, which I implemented straight away and have stuck to so far, are:
- Get your phone away from where you sleep. Don't just put it the other side of your bedroom, give it a room of its own!
- Don't check your phone or email for at least an hour after waking up (these first two are so powerful, I wish I'd started doing them sooner!)
- Drink a full glass of water as soon as you wake up (I always thought tea would count for this but I don't think it does!)
- Make a healthy breakfast (since giving up sugar, I nearly always have cinnamon porridge over green smoothies like the one in the video, although that does look great!)
- Put a positive message or affirmation near where you get ready (my mirror now tells me to believe in myself and make it happen!)
I haven't yet taken Zoë's advice about moving my body or going outside to breathe some fresh air (maybe I'll ease myself in by sticking my head out the window...), but I know this would really help to wake me up and instil some more healthy habits in my life in general. She also writes down what she's grateful for and visualises the things she wants to achieve, which can only be a positive way to start the day so I should really work these into my routine too! I am realising that taking time to think about what I have right now is a brilliant way to be more present. I used to take so much for granted and focus only on the negatives or the things that I'm lacking, but I am trying to be more conscious of the positives now. Especially in moments of stress or self-doubt, remembering the good stuff can be amazingly grounding!
The other thing from the video that I've been wanting to try for a while is meditation. Yesterday I photographed a wellbeing in the workplace event held by Discover Your Bounce, and at the end I got talking to a lovely woman who had been meditating for about a year and found it really beneficial. I mentioned that I'd recently adopted a new morning routine and was now getting up at 7am and having an hour to myself to just relax and get ready for the day, so I wanted to use some of that time to meditate too. The lady told me that she gets up at 7am too and meditates straight away, and she encouraged me to start tomorrow so we'd be in it together! It's amazing how the thought of being held accountable to a stranger can really make you take action, apparently it's all I needed to just start! A very quick and bleary-eyed search of YouTube led me to this ten-minute guided meditation designed to “kick start your day!” I enjoyed it and it was a nice way to wake up, but my mind definitely wandered more than it was supposed to! I can tell it's going to take a lot of practice to really focus my mind, but I'm excited to work on it and hopefully become a total zen queen!