Instead of starting our day by immediately reaching outwards — to our phones, tasks in the home, the commute to work. Take just a few minutes to bring the attention inwards first. Nourish your inner world before stepping into the outer world.
All of the following suggestions for your morning routine are short and sweet. To allow you to easily slip in a little gorgeousness whatever your morning schedule: Focus on just a few yoga poses practiced with intention — rather than intensity —or plans for hour long practice (though of course its great if you do practice for that long each morning) Making a yoga and meditation practice part of your day is a gorgeous way to prepare you gently for all the adventures your day can bring!
Start in Child’s Pose. For deep relaxation and healing, you can’t beat Balasana: Child’s Pose. Kneel on the mat (or even while still in bed!) with your bottom sinking back onto your heels, leaning forward and rest your forehead on the mat. Your arms can rest by your sides, or reaching out in front of you. Rest here and breathe deeply.
From Child’s pose slide your hands under your shoulders and come to all-fours ready for…
Cat & Cow: the Cat/Cow poses are a flowing dual movement which gently energizes the axial skeleton and muscles around the spine. From hands and knees flex the spine in towards the earth on the inhale, lifting tailbone and crown to the sky. Then on the exhale flex the spine out towards the sky pointing tailbone and crown the the earth. Do this at your own pace, for as long as you like to move that energy round the body and core.
From Cat & Cow, tuck your toes under and lift your hips to the sky (if you want to pause in down dog here, go for it!), walk your feet toward your hands to bringing you to…
Uttanasana – Forward fold, allow the upper body to be heavy and relaxed, supported by engaged legs. If it helps you release shoulders, arms and head, feel free to have a little wiggle or sway of the upper body!
When you are ready, soften the knees and raise the arms to the sky as we come upright for…
Tadasana – Mountain pose: the feet can be placed together or a little apart, and we lift up through the body from the firm base of our feet. Just like an awesome mountain, from the outside you look calm, serene. But on the inside you are a strong, solid force of nature! Feel a sense of being grounded and strong in your body. As you stand, set an intention for your day. Perhaps its a word or mantra, or perhaps a visualisation for your day.
Meditate for just a few minutes here to help prepare you for your day (you can stay in your mountain pose, or you can come to seated if you prefer)
Do you have any challenges coming up in your day? or is there a goal you are keen to achieve? bring it to mind now, in your visualization. Imagine yourself succeeding in your task. We have the power to thoughtfully create our intentions within our mind; Visualisation, guided imagery, and meditation can all create positive new pathways within the brain. This is in addition to delightful benefits of boosting confidence, focus, and sense of peace.
And what next? Here are just a few ideas for a few more positive activities to do BEFORE you look at your phone (which has a tendency to distract). Here are some important considerations for your best morning ritual:
Now go forth, and have a gorgeous day!
Originally published at medium.com