Who is the morning you? Groggy? Hungry for caffeine? Ready to feed yourself, felines, canines or some other creature? In your ideal world, who would you be in the morning? Would you be energized? Grateful for being alive and above dirt? Remember childhood when you were ready to meet the world with a bowl of Lucky Charms and Saturday morning cartoons?
Your morning rituals can determine a lot of how your day goes. A friend of mine scoffed at me when I told her that the 15 minute yoga DVD she was doing in the morning would help her with stress during the day. As a busy public high school teacher in Washington, DC, her response was, “Whatever, I’ll try it.” A few weeks later after an anthrax scare at her school, she called me and said, “You know! I think that yoga is working. I stayed totally calm today and just directed the kids out of the building.”
Or take my friend’s grandmother. As a special treat sometimes she puts circus peanuts in her coffee. You know those glorious orange marshmallow concoctions that melt in your mouth? I can just see her, peaceful and patient as the circus peanuts dissolve in her java. I also imagine a playfulness and child dancing in her heart as she remembers loving circus peanuts as a young girl in North Carolina.
What might you do with an extra ten minutes in the morning? Yoga is not for everyone. I know that some friends have told me that they get bored. Though I would dare say that 10 minutes of breathing in the morning is for everyone. Perhaps an index card next to your bed to write one thing for which you are thankful and an, “I declare this a day of productivity” or laughter or courage. I have been meditating every morning for peace and joy in the hearts of my family and in the heart of my son’s first grade teacher so that this transition to a new grade can flow easily. One of my favorite morning rituals for months was that I would watch (parts of) movies before work since I don’t get that entertainment time much anymore—or at least I don’t pick the movies. I started a James Bond marathon at 6:30am and couldn’t have been happier. It was my secret time.
Think about one thing you might do in the morning if you get up 10 minutes earlier. Try it for a few days. Even if it’s not every day. Just try something. Keep it a secret. Or tell your friends. Do something to be a creator of your day. You will see a new shape to the following 24 hours. Trust me.