Hands up if you bounce out of bed every morning bright-eyed, bushy-tailed and happy to start your day?
If you’re anything like I used to be then you probably wake up just long enough to hit the snooze button on your phone (for the tenth time in a row), roll over and go back to sleep...at least for another 10 minutes, right?
The thought of leaving a warm, cozy bed for a job you don't love, traffic, appointments, chores, responsibilities, a hectic schedule or any other thing you have to do instead of what you'd rather be doing is enough to make anyone refuse to leave their bed.
As a self-proclaimed night owl and someone who used to hate mornings, over the past two years, I've slowly morphed into someone who loves to rise up with the birds excited for the promising day ahead.
You might be surprised to hear me say that the missing link and the key to becoming a better morning person has very little to do with your job, your schedule or what time you went to bed the night before and has everything to do with your mindset.
Keep reading to learn how you can cultivate a motivated morning mindset and start your day happy, too.
Let's dive in.
MOTIVATED MORNING MINDSET TIPS + ROUTINE
RISE AND BREATHE SLOWLY
Nothing makes me crankier than feeling rushed. When I don't have time to do things in a calm and peaceful manner I'm tense, irritable and it could take hours to get me out of that funk. Whether you wake to the sound of an alarm or not, try sitting up (gently) in bed before your feet hit the floor and give yourself a few peaceful minutes to transition from night to morning. Start by taking a few deep breaths then raise both arms above your head to stretch and gesture to the Universe that you're grateful to be alive and well. Take this opportunity to be still and decide what kind of day you want to have.
HAVE SOMETHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO
Isn't it sad to think about how much time we spend waiting to be happy? We wait for the weekend, our once-a-year vacation, a break or something exciting to happen. But what if there is nothing BIG on the horizon? How do you feel good about the life you're living right now?
The sad truth is that many of us live each day anticipating the BIG stuff and we end up missing the little things in between that bring us true happiness.
For me, one thing I look forward to each day is a fresh cup of coffee and a few hours of undistracted time to write before everyone wakes up. That's my motivation for getting up between 5 and 6 a.m. (almost) every day. When I'm feeling tired I focus on how good I feel when I've had that time for myself before starting our daily routine. It sets a really good tone for the day, too.
Try making a list of ordinary things that will inspire you and give you something to look forward to each day. Things like: morning meditation, journaling, walking to work instead of taking the bus, making a new recipe, going to the farmer's market, doing something creative or choosing to eat lunch in the park today instead of at your desk.
Stop delaying your happiness and find something to get excited about, now.
PLAN & PREP THE NIGHT BEFORE
Guess what? A motivated morning mindset doesn't just begin at the start of each day. That is why it's important to consider how your night time routine impacts how you feel when you wake up each morning. You might be able to go 1 or 2 nights on little to no sleep and still rise up feeling pretty positive, but how do you feel after 3 or 4 nights in a row? Give yourself a few minutes each night to get excited about tomorrow and deliberately create a vision in your mind of how you want your day to be.
If you go to bed in a good mood chances are you'll wake up feeling pretty good, too, right? Remember to find something to look forward to and generate a little enthusiasm for the upcoming day.
CLEAR YOUR MIND
Julia Cameron, author of The Artist's Way recommends writing 3 longhand pages each morning as a form of meditation to connect with ourselves more deeply and to provide a safe place to vent our emotions. Using this tool immediately upon rising helps us move forward with our day (productively and effectively), frees space to think creatively and quiets an overactive mind.
If your first reaction to morning pages feels daunting, start small. Reach for your journal and write (stream of consciousness style) for 3 - 5 minutes to clear your mind and help you feel more centred and focused.
SET AN INTENTION
Intentions are conscious, purposeful thoughts combined with action to deliberately produce a certain outcome. The key word being deliberate.
To set an effective intention, be clear about knowing what you want to create then focus on the thoughts and actions that will help you manifest your desire. I also recommend incorporating the use of healing crystals to increase your ability to manifest faster.
Sit back and take a moment to visualize your ideal day then think about the actions you can take to make that happen. Remember that intention is not about doing things out of habit, it's about making conscious choices for ourselves so that we can take an active approach to creating a happy, fulfilling life.
FOCUS ON THE POSITIVE
The reason I am so motivated to wake up between 5 and 6 a.m. each day is because I focus on the benefit of getting up before everyone else. I try not to think about how tired I am and how good my bed feels in the moment. But trust me, even when you love what you do you feel that way sometimes, too. However, my attention focuses on the positive outcome which is how I'll feel after some undistracted writing time; something that only happens in the early morning hours when everything is still.
Also, it's a good idea to start the day with something positive like a quote, prayer, inspiring blog post, an uplifting song or an intention. Absorb the things that make you feel good before getting bombarded with all the negativity and chaos that we encounter on a daily basis.
CHECK YOUR ATTITUDE
Whether you believe me or not, motivation is a choice. Happiness is a choice. Feeling energized is a choice. Ten years ago I attended an intense, week-long personal development workshop that ran from 10 a.m. until midnight every day. It was exhausting, deep inner work and each night I would leave feeling completely drained wondering how I was going to wake up the next morning and do it all over again. Every day we'd each arrive with a coffee in hand, looking dazed and utterly defeated by the lack of sleep and emotional rawness the workshop was exposing us to.
The moment the facilitator would give us an exercise, you could hear a collective gasp in the room and a sigh of exhaustion wishing she'd leave us in our catatonic state. Every time she sensed that she was losing the group's focus she would say: "energy is a choice; you can choose it if you want it." Upon hearing that, her words helped shift my perspective and I'd feel more energized and refreshed.
PRO TIP: It can be very beneficial to incorporate movement to help you get the stagnant energy flowing. Stand up, change your position or wave your arms in the air while repeating this motivated morning mantra (or any morning mantra that inspires you):
OKAY, BEFORE YOU GO, TELL ME:
What's the biggest struggle you face when it comes to feeling motivated and positive each day?
Do you have a morning ritual or mantra that helps you maintain a motivated morning mindset?