Imagine the world is quiet. No one is asking you for anything. No one is disturbing you at all. Everyone is sleeping. You have an hour entirely to yourself. It’s peaceful time for introverts in the morning at the crack of dawn. And it’s so worth it.
Even if you don’t consider yourself an early riser, you can create your own personal oasis of solitude before your hectic day begins. Really anyone can get up just a little bit earlier if they set their minds to it. Create a ritual that you think you’ll enjoy each morning. Make it a gentle activity that slowly wakes you up. Choose to do something to pamper yourself, and that makes you feel glad about being up. Once you start, and have that time that’s all your own, you’ll actually look forward to it.
Do your ritual every day so that it becomes ingrained in your daily routine, and see how good you feel. You’ll find that having early morning time to yourself is positively uplifting.
Here are some ideas to begin your day.
1. Stretch it out
Slowly wake up your body by doing some mild stretches. After a night in bed, your muscles and joints can feel stiff and tight, but stretching exercises ease away any achiness, and increases the blood and oxygen flow throughout your whole system. After doing a morning stretching ritual for a few weeks, you’ll be more limber and flexible, may have better posture, and feel better all over. Back, hip and hamstring stretches, lower back twists and knee rolls can even be done while you’re still in bed. Stretching on a heated floor mat feels wonderful too.
2. Do a daily intention
As you wake up, think about what you want out of your day. Then use that objective to create a simple, optimistic and achievable goal. Write it down on a sticky note, and then refer to again and again during your day and repeat it over and over. It gives your day more meaning and are reminders of how you want to live your life.
3. Breathe big
Find a comfortable spot and relax. (No doubt you are probably relaxed and maybe still half asleep!) Focus on your breathing for several minutes. You should feel your body get into a rhythm. Take a deep breath in through your nose, breathing into your stomach and extending it outward. Then exhale through your mouth. Do that several times, filling up your lungs and concentrating solely on your breath. Deep breathing is good for you because it brings more oxygen to your cells, which helps wake you up.
4. Follow a guided meditation
When I try to meditate on my own, I fall asleep – no matter what time of day it is. So I like to listen to guided meditations and recorded affirmations. It’s as if I’m taking my mind on an adventure to deepen my connection with my true self. With beautiful music and positive messaging, they’re wonderful motivators in the morning, and really get me excited about what the day has in store. There are so many to choose from. Test drive a few until you find ones that are right for you.
5. Have a better breakfast
You know having breakfast is good for you. Make your breakfast extra healthy by eating it slowly and mindfully. Set out a pretty place setting at your kitchen table or island the night before to welcome you at daybreak. Make yourself a warm breakfast to nourish your soul and give you energy. You’ll kick-start your metabolism and feel more satisfied to focus on your day ahead.
6. Awaken with a walk
There’s nothing more uplifting for introverts in the morning than getting out for a morning walk and feeling the rising sunshine on your shoulders. Listen to the birds. Experience the seasons. You’ll take in the world waking up right along with you as you breathe in the crisp morning air. Read about the benefits of having a daily 30-minute walk from Prevention.
7. Read on
Create a ritual to read a few pages of your book first thing in the morning, Or read a poem every day, or a short story, the newspaper, or catch up on those magazine articles that you’ve set aside and have been sitting on your coffee table. It seems like we’re always wanting to find more time to read….well you have just discovered it!
8. Greet with gratitude
Spend a few minutes right when you wake up to greet the new day and appreciate all you have. Think gratitude – about whatever comes to mind. Be thankful to be alive. Be thankful for the sunshine. Be thankful for your soft pillow and downy comforter. Just don’t fall back asleep while appreciating how warm and wonderful your bed is!
9. Savor and sip
Make the most of your cup of coffee. Really savor the time with your tea. Whatever your hot beverage of choice – curl up in a chair with your warm mug and a blanket and just stare out the window. Introverts in the morning are able to just sit peacefully and absorb the subtle beauty in the word as it awakens. Watch the sun rise, see what unfolds in your back yard and let your mind wander. It’s a wonderful thing to truly drink in your morning instead of guzzling it down.
10. Write anything
Open up your journal, put your pen to the paper and just write whatever comes to your mind. Or journal about something meaningful to you. When you write from the heart, and your mind is just walking up, you may be surprised to realize what your writing reveals about you to yourself.
11. Pamper your pet
Get in some quality time with your beloved pet before you head out for the day. They will treasure the time with you and it will grow the bond between you. They miss you all day – don’t they deserve some extra snuggling in the morning? Petting them releases a variety of human happiness hormones, including serotonin and oxytocin. So you’ll both feel great after giving them the attention they deserve. Take them on that walk outside, give them some belly rubs, or play fetch with their favorite squeaky toy. It will hold them over until you get home. After all, the reason you have your pet is to make the both of you happy, so cherish your time together.