#4 The Purpose of a Morning Practice
In returning to my morning practice after the holidays, I have been reminded of what a difference it makes to my day. It does more than set the tone for the day, it gives me what I need to be at my best. Bolstered by this ritual I am able to navigate whatever the day throws at me, with more equanimity and grace than would otherwise occur.
Since the new year I have been participating in the Insight Timer Mindful Morning Challenge where meditation teachers share their own morning practices before leading a meditation. During one of the meditations this week, a teacher asked "why is your morning practice important to you?". That got me thinking. Why indeed do I follow this morning ritual I've created for myself? What am I trying to bring forth? What am I hoping to feel? It was a great reminder to sense check this ritual habit. And do you know what, the fresh perspective has helped me to recommit to the practice and become more grateful for the value that it brings into my day.
So, what is the purpose of your morning practice? Ideally, it should provide you with what you need to bring your best self into the day.
Whether you are seeking energy, connection, nourishment, inspiration, positivity, clarity, quiet, gratitude, self-love, self-care, confidence or motivation, do your morning activities help cultivate this in you?
To help you look at your morning activities through the lens of purposes, here is a look at mine*:
Exercise = energy, motivation
Breakfast with my family = nourishment through healthy fuel and connection
Shower = transition, confidence
Make the bed = tidy environment provides clarity, sense of pride
Make tea and light a candle = self-love, self-care, a little bit of luxury
Meditate = quiet, check in with myself
Create an affirmation = positivity, intentionality
Write in my Journal = creativity
*I confess, that my morning routine is somewhat elaborate, born out of the privilege of being an early riser, with a self-sufficient pre-teen daughter and a short commute from my kitchen to the office. Yours can, and should, be as simple as it needs to be for you to fulfil your purpose and bring your best self to the world.
Lingering Thought: What do you need most to be your best self in the day ahead? What is the one thing that you can include in your morning routine that will give you what you need?