Live in the present moment wisely and earnestly



Morning Practice

This early morning rise of mine today has led me 

thinking desiring more of a good morning routine leading and enhancing spiritual growth.

As usual, I look for articles and found this!

Thanks s Michelle Nickolaison,who’s biased towards yoga, her write-up at http://tinybuddha.com ; ) !

Also, I found  http://guidingechoes.com/seven-morning-spiritual-practices-to-start-your-day-off-right/

From http://tinybuddha.com/blog/how-to-develop-a-strong-morning-practice-to-start-your-day-well/
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How to Develop a Strong Morning Practice to Start Your Day Well

How to Develop a Strong Morning Practice// // // // // // // // //

Your mornings set the tone for the rest of the day. We all know this. If you get off to a bad start, oftentimes the rest of your day follows suit.

The best way to combat this is to come up with a meaningful morning practice that acts as a buffer between getting up and starting your day, and puts you in the right headspace to go out and face the world. (Or do whatever it is you do, on a day-to-day basis.)

It gives you a space in the morning where you know you can be mindful to help you strive for mindfulness for the rest of your day, and it also kick starts your body and mind.

What is a Morning Practice?

It can be as simple or as involved as you want it to be. I like to think of mine as a set of rituals. I get up, drink some water, and then do yoga and Shiva Nata. After that, I ground, center, and then meditate for five to ten minutes.

Then I shower, get dressed, sit down at my desk, and do a daily one card tarot draw, recording it in my journal. After all of that, I can boot up the computer and write my words for the day.

It sounds awfully involved when it’s listed like that. In actuality, it only takes thirty to sixty minutes, and it has enough factors that it can be tweaked depending on how I’m feeling in the morning and how much time I have to spend on it.

You might notice that it includes not only physical activities, and not solely mental activities, either; it’s a good blend of both. It doesn’t do a lot of good to start the day mentally awake but with a stiff and sluggish body, and it doesn’t do any good to start the day with your body warmed up but your mind not.

The best way to wake up your body is through exercise. Obviously I am biased towards yoga and Shiva Nata, but you might like something else. Running is a popular option, or tai chi.

Exercise will get your blood flowing. It also makes you feel more energized and provides a rush of endorphins (basically, chemicals that make you feel awesome). Who wouldn’t want to start their day off with that?

There’s just as many options for waking up mentally. Meditation is another activity with well proven benefits, and it’s so simple that you can do it without any tools at all. If you like, though, you can listen to music without words or sounds to help you along. I like beach or water noises, personally.

I’d suggest starting out with an easily manageable chunk of time, just a few minutes, and then working your way up to ten minutes or longer. I’d also suggest meditating after exercising, so that there’s less risk of falling back asleep!

Another option is writing. I use 750words.com. It’s the digital version of the morning pages exercise from The Artist’s Way. Or you can write three pages by hand—whichever works better for you. This is especially useful for writers, because it lets us get all of the “gunk” out of our head. That way, when we sit down to write again later in the day, we have clear minds.

And of course, there’s always prayer, if that works with your personal worldviews.

Building Your Practice

If you don’t currently have a morning practice, don’t design something long and complicated when you’re starting off. I started off with five minutes of yoga. That was it. Then I went up to fifteen minutes, added a few minutes of meditation, added the daily draw and writing, and the Shiva Nata came last, very recently.

I first began six or seven months ago, so it does take time to build a balanced morning practice. But it’s so worth it to start with just one small change today. There’s nothing like starting your day off feeling fabulous, physically and mentally.

Photo by Shaun Scholtz.

Avatar of Michelle Nickolaisen

About Michelle Nickolaisen

Michelle is a 22 year old blue haired Austinite, who writes about creativity and spirituality at Wicked Whimsy.

 

“Smile, breathe, and go slowly.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh

 

 

 

From http://guidingechoes.com/seven-morning-spiritual-practices-to-start-your-day-off-right/

Seven Morning Spiritual Practices to Start Your Day Off Right | Guiding Echoes<!–// //

Seven Morning Spiritual Practices to Start Your Day Off Right

Posted by

Seven Morning Spiritual Practices to Start Your Day Off Right | Guiding Echoes<!–// //

How you wake up each morning is important, and what you do after you wake up is even more critical, as it sets the mood for the rest of your day. We all have bad days and while we can’t prevent them from taking place, we can set our mood in the morning to help us navigate through them.

Most people aren’t morning people because they don’t know how to start their morning off right. They start their day with the annoying screech of an alarm clock, listening to the news and arguing with their kids or spouses. If that’s how your day usually starts, is it any wonder that you’re not a morning person?

We’ve all heard the saying “garbage in, garbage out.” This saying means that whatever we put into our minds will effect our attitude and the way behave with others. However, it also effects how we see the world. If you are addicted to the news, and if this is what you listen to first thing in the morning, then you will start your day by feeling stressed, disappointed and miserable before you even walk out the door. You’ll be overly cautious, looking over your shoulder and waiting for the next bad thing to happen to you. Remember, that 99% of the things we worry about never actually happen. And worrying about a situation or event won’t prevent it from taking place, so why would you want to spend all your energy on something that isn’t beneficial to you?

In this article, you’ll be presented with 7 spiritual practices that will help you to start your day off right.

Reading: It may seem simple, but spending just a few minutes each morning to read an uplifting passage from an encouraging, spiritual book can help to get your day off to a great start. Spiritual books give you good, solid advice and increases your awareness of your own behavior through out the day. They also teach you how to respond to the negative things around you. Build your spiritual muscles by making it a point to read something encouraging, insightful and uplifting each morning. This raises your vibration and puts you in a good mood. You’ll be amazed by the results.

Yoga: This simple art of breathing and stretching provides many physical benefits as well as spiritual ones. Yoga is useful in helping you to develop flexibility, strength and balance. Many people have experienced weight loss and increased stamina from yoga alone. The act of stretching and breathing connects you to the energy of the universe. When it’s done properly, it also helps to re-align your chakras and to get your life energy (also referred to as chi) to flow properly. People of every age and body shape can enjoy the benefits of yoga. Remember to go at your own pace and start by doing the exercises that are comfortable for you.

Meditation: If you’re the type of person who wakes up with a mind that is full of needless chatter, than you will benefit greatly from this simple exercise. 10 minutes alone can help to calm your overwhelming thoughts and silence your mind so that you can think clearly, perhaps for the first time. Clearing your mind for your own incessant chatter opens your spiritual ears so that you can receive guidance from the Universe. Until you quiet your mind, you will find it difficult to connect with God. Meditation has physical benefits too, such as lowering blood pressure, increasing blood flow and enhances your immune system.

Visualization: How would you like your day to go? What are your goals? How do you want people to treat you? Don’t just hope for the results that you want. Make them happen through visualization. Take just 5-10 minutes each morning (or more if you have the time, find the exercise fun and even somewhat addicting) and create a movie of how you want your day to go. Are you dreading a meeting with a difficult client? Imagine yourself in that meeting and see the power of the universe supporting you. See your guides and angels crowding around you, giving you the right words to say at the right time. See your difficult client smiling and accepting your information with grace and gratitude. The best way to think of visualization is a prayer that you see. You are putting this information out to the Universe and the Universe will respond in kind. Although things may not always go the way that you plan, you should find that things end up working themselves out or that you are somehow better equipped to take on the challenges of the day.

Prayer: Communicating with your deities is like starting the day by talking to your best friend. You can share your hopes and fears with them, and they will give you advice on how to go about it. Sometimes, we may not hear our guides talk back to us, but we honor them by praying to them and making them our first priority in the morning. When you do this, they will make their presence know to you. You may feel them as an impression or an inner voice, or you may even get the feeling that a loving presence is with you throughout your day. Think of them as your own group of cheerleaders. They are always there for you and want you to succeed. And if you need a proverbial shoulder to cry on, they’re there for that to. Quite simply, deities see things that we don’t and therefore, can do things that we can’t. It never hurts to have an ally on your side and they are always happy to be there.

Thankfulness: Spiritual mentor Wayne Dyer has mentioned that this is his favorite morning practice. Each morning, before you get out of bed, run through a list of the things that you are thankful for. Your list may be small, or it may be long. It doesn’t matter so long as you generate those feelings of gratitude and thank God for the wonderful blessings he’s poured into your life. Even if things are tough, you can always find something to be thankful for. You can be thankful for your bed, your health, your eyesight, you friends, your kids, your job or even your unemployment check. Some people prefer to say their thank you’s out loud while others write them in a journal. Either way works, so do what is right for you. Remember that when we say thank you to God, the universe, our friends and co-workers, that our gratitude creates reciprocal feelings of love and contentment, and also encourages them to do more for us because they know that we genuinely appreciate their favor.

Go For A Walk: How often do you get out and spend time with nature? If you’re like most people, you find that you spend more time indoors that outdoors. I’m sure we’re all familiar with the many physical benefits of walking but are you familiar with the spiritual rewards of this exercise? The sky, the trees, flowers, plants, animals, lakes, soil and even bugs all have messages for us and if we don’t spend time with them, how can we hear what they are trying to say? Walks not only increases the number of cells in our brains and the connections that these cells make. They also connect us to nature. That connection helps us to be more creative and, as with yoga, gets our energy flowing. Walking outside also puts us in the moment in a good way. If you choose to go for a walk to gain spiritual benefits as well as physical ones, you may want to leave the dogs or the kiddies at home. You can always take them later.

Although we have listed these practices as exercises to do in the morning, you can do them in the afternoon or evening as well. The purpose of doing them in the morning is to ground you before the day starts. Don’t feel as if you must do all 7 exercises each and every morning. Instead, play with them and see which ones feel the best to you.

You can try rotating them and try a different exercise each day. Or you can stick to one or two to do each morning. It’s completely up to you.

Do you have a morning routine that wasn’t on the list? Have you experimented with the practices above? If so, how did they effect you? Tell us about it by leaving a comment below.

We would love hear from you. Namaste.

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