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Wednesday, August 22, 2018

my morning rituals

I am without a doubt a total morning person. I have always been this way. Don’t get me wrong, I can certainly hang all night but you better believe I’ll still be up early the next day. However, there was once a time in my life where waking up in the morning felt like complete drudgery. I had no zip, no energy, no nothing. I felt tired even after sleeping all night. Well, come to find out…I wasn’t tired, I was uninspired

I have always admired Tony Robbins and I remember watching a YouTube video of him during this time speaking about his morning rituals. Long story short, that’s what got the ball rolling for me and here I am about 5 years later, still practicing my morning rituals to this day. Here are my morning rituals & how they've changed my life... 

5 O'Clock Alarm 
Monday through Friday my alarm happily goes off at 5 am. I set my alarm to an upbeat, energetic song. It sets my mood as soon as I hear it. I wake up at 5 am because it gives me one guaranteed quiet, uninterrupted hour to myself to get my mind and body focused, energized and ready to take on the day. There is little to no distractions this early in the morning, therefore, no excuses not to follow through with my rituals. 

Make Your Bed
I honestly can’t remember the last time I didn’t make my bed. I even make my bed when I stay in hotels. This was a rule growing up in our house that I carried on with me throughout life, but I also read the book “Make Your Bed” by former Navy Seal Admiral William H. McRaven. He states that by making your bed first thing in the morning, you are starting your day with a task completed, which gets the ball rolling for the rest of the day. And if your day goes to shit, well at least you’re going home to a made bed. 

1 Liter of Water 
I drink about 1 liter of water every single morning. I do this before drinking or eating anything else. Some of my ex-boyfriends can testify to this as I’m pretty sure they thought I was a weirdo, but I honestly believe the power of drinking water first thing in the morning is soooooo incredible. I’m certainly not a doctor, so I won’t go into all the health benefits but a good chug of H2O in the morning does the body well.

Gratitude & God 
If you read my “Turning 25” blog, you know how important gratitude is to me. I thank God every morning for waking me up and giving me the gift of life. It’s a simple and quick thank you, but it automatically shifts my mindset into a state of gratefulness. Following that, I come out into my kitchen and read today’s morning devotion from either “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young or “Starting Your Day Right” by Joyce Meyer. 

YouTube & Journaling 
I started this ritual about 4 years ago, but wasn’t consistent with it until the past two. This might be the habit that changed my life the most—also the morning ritual that I enjoy the most. While emptying my dishwasher and getting coffee going, I turn on a YouTube video. Sometimes it’s Tony Robbins, sometimes it’s Joel Osteen, sometimes it’s a motivational/empowering mix of entrepreneurs, sometimes it’s about having a good attitude, etc…the list goes on. Every day is different. Once I have my coffee ready to go, I sit down and take notes. I then pick a few other videos to watch/listen to and continue writing. I have years worth of journals with little notes, quotes & helpful tips. You name it, I’ve probably watched a video about it. I love everything from business and success, to religion and spirituality, to health and fitness, dating and relationships…the list goes on. This might be a BOLD statement, but I honestly feel that I have learned more from YouTube than I ever did in a classroom. 

Review My Goals
I have a very specific list of short and long term goals in a “note” on my phone. I pull them up and look at them every morning. I have my goal and next to it the reason why I want to accomplish it. Rereading this everyday keeps me focused and gives me purpose. 

Exercise 
Last, but certainly not least…exercise. I rarely start my day without a workout. Of course I exercise for the aesthetics…but I truly workout for my mental health. I am such a happier, more positive person when I get my body and endorphins moving first thing in the morning. It truly keeps my thoughts upbeat, light and optimistic all day long. 

This might seem like a lot to do first thing in the morning, but I get this all done in 1 hour. It’s my “selfish” hour. Growing up, my dad always said to my sister and I,“Be selfish—take care of thyself.” I always thought that was a rather, well…selfish…statement. Now that I’m older, I get it. If I don’t take care of me, I can’t take care of anyone else. You can’t pour from an empty cup. That’s why I whole heartedly mean it when I say that my morning rituals changed my life. 

Following my last blog post, I’ve had a few people reach out to me asking how I got to the point I’m at now. It has been a multitude of different things (that’s for sure) and years of work, but my morning rituals is definitely at the top of the list. Starting your day right is a complete game changer. I believe rituals are one of the most effective and self-empowering ways to change your morning, change your day, and change your life. 

Try creating some of your own rituals & see how it changes your day. 

Keep on keepin’ on—

XX, Laura 

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