what is yours and how does it
define your life?
Let’s talk about morning routines.
What is yours? Better still, do you have one?
And if so, what is it that you do in the morning?
Do your morning activities bring you into the day in a state of calm, feeling gratitude and love for life?
Or do your mornings involve a lot of stress?
My morning routine used to be one of rush, at least that’s how it felt.
I would set the alarm clock as late as possible and then once I got up, it was all about getting ready and leaving for work.
That said, I was NEVER a jump out of bed with 10 minutes until I had to leave: a 5 min shower, dressed in a flash and out the door, coffee in hand!
My alarm clock was always set allowing me an hour to prepare.
For one main reason:
I was always so full of anxiety (cortisol and adrenaline were my besties), that I would have a melt down if I didn’t feel like I had any time in the morning.
My body literally could not cope with doing anything quickly.
I needed to take my time to have a shower, get dressed, do my hair and make up, make and eat breakfast, caffeinate, get my lunch together and then physically get myself to work.
But despite this time, I would make for myself, there was always a level of anxiety that sat in and on my chest each morning.
Even if I had an hour to do everything I wanted.
This is one reaction of a person who is living in SURVIVAL MODE.
This was me in “freeze” mode.
You may have heard of our human reactions when it comes to survival:
fight, flight or freeze.
And to this day, I have a strong freeze response, it’s been my go to since I was a little girl, my way of reacting.
And so if I had’ve woken up with 10 minutes until I had to be at work, I would have completely frozen, broken down and probably called in sick, unable to move.
In fact I did this on a number of occasions.
Freeze feels debilitating.
Maybe you can relate?
But maybe this is not your reaction. Maybe you go into flight mode?
The “oh shit I’m late!” and you get your ass into gear and make it out the door and still make it in time.
You allow the adrenaline to surge and then once you get to the other side (to work or whatever you’re late for), you calm yourself down although that wired feeling can often linger in the body for some time and that regular hit of adrenaline is not good for us long term.
It’s as if we’re running from a lion, scared for our life, every damn day.
Regardless of what type of reactor you are, your choice of morning routine really sets you up for the day.
Because as soon as your brain waves go from delta (body and mind asleep) to theta (brain awake, body asleep, the dream state) to alpha (brain awake, but attention is in your inner world), to beta (body and mind awake and connected to the environment around us), without a solid morning routine, anxiety can set in.
So what’s going on here?
What is anxiety and why do we suffer from it?
Firstly, I’d like to say that I believe that anxiety is NOT a disorder or a disease.
It’s not genetic. You don’t get it from your parents.
So if you’re labelling yourself as such, I would encourage you to stop this.
Stop placing your attention on an imaginary condition.
There is nothing wrong with you.
You are not different from anyone else.
You are not “special” to have this label.
Thinking that you are is a choice you make every day to continue suffering.
To give yourself permission to be a victim.
To not take control of your mind and body.
What I believe is going on when it comes to anxiety is quite simple:
You are thinking thoughts about yourself and your life
(that you’ve likely been thinking since you were a child).
And these thoughts create feelings in your body
(and have been creating these feelings for possibly your whole life).
So as humans, who have been conditioned to repeat the same patterns over and over each day, we also have the same thoughts over and over each day.
Same thoughts = same feelings in the body.
Your body becomes your mind.
So if your mind is running a million miles, your body will follow.
Like me, this may result in burnout and an inability to take action.
Or you may be that action taker being supercharged all day long by the thoughts and emotions when you panic and run.
And so when we do this day in and day out, we condition our bodies to become our minds.
And this behaviour becomes the norm for us.
It becomes automatic.
And worst still, it becomes addictive.
So every day, we think the same thoughts and it generates the same emotions.
And the body CRAVES these emotions
(until you hit rock bottom and want to change).
Be aware, there can be a big resistance to change.
The idea of changing your “survival” routine may bring up feelings of discomfort.
You may think of all the reasons why you can’t change it.
Why you can’t go to bed earlier the night before.
Why you can’t get up with enough time or why there’s never enough time.
Why you need caffeine to get you going.
Why taking time for you is not possible.
Why it’s normal to feel stressed when you feel rushed…
and so on.
Know that this is normal, it’s just your body and mind craving what is familiar.
Craving the known.
Which means, and here’s where it gets really real…
That you’re living in the past!
You’re repeating the same thoughts and feelings and therefore, actions, over and over again.
So what am I recommending a morning routine should look and feel like?
How do we break this cycle of living in the past?
It’s actually very simple:
You’ve got to change your routine.
Start to make the time in the morning to breathe and meditate.
Creating a state of calm and peace for body and mind rather than allowing it go to that familiar feeling of anxiety.
Detaching from your outer environment in order to change your inner environment.
Change the inner, change the outer
(not the other way around).
So, I’m going to challenge you.
For the next 7 days, I want you to get out of bed, have a big drink of water, find yourself a comfortable space to sit, close your eyes and just breathe in and out for 10 minutes.
I’ll even give you a bit of help here.
Click on the button below and listen to the tone and breathe along with it.
There are no instructions, just a tone to indicate the in breath and a tone to indicate the out breath.
(It’s a 5 count in and 7 count out.)
Because one thing I can guarantee is that if you have anxiety, you are most definitely not breathing deeply enough.
So when you breath in, feel the belly rise and then the chest fill up and out in all directions.
This will engage your diaphragm allowing you to take big, long, slow, deep breaths
(the muscle that sits inside your ribcage, underneath your lungs).
And allow your mind to be still, to be in the darkness.
And if you find yourself drifting off in thought, just come back to your breath.
(click the button now!)
The next thing I would encourage you to do, after your breath practice, is
spend 10 mins free writing.
The aim is to let go of everything but to also start to become aware of your thoughts and your feelings.
Notice if the anxiety starts coming back when you write.
If so, what familiar thoughts and feelings are you triggering?
And then come back to that breath to bring you back into a calm state of mind.
And keep writing until your time is up.
Repeat this cycle as often as you need, noticing your thoughts and feelings as you write… and breathe while you write.
Ok, just two simple changes that will take you a total of 20-30 mins.
Do you think you can do it?
I know you can!
And please do let me know how you go!
You can email me at [email protected] or comment below.
I’d love to hear your experience.
And if you’d like to dive deeper into this together, click on the other button below and schedule a chat with me.
Let’s talk all about the ways I can help you get from a state of anxiety, to a state of calm.
Sending a lot of love to you and your new and improved morning routine ❤️,
P.S. Pretend that it’s easy and it will be.
P.P.S. Know someone who would love this content? If so, please forward this blog post to them.
Thank you x