Starting The Day Right: How Your Morning Rituals Can Make The Rest Of Your Day Amazing
We spoke to psychotherapist Colin McDonnell about how amping up your AM can lead to the best day ever.
We’ve heard of many morning habits that can help our digestion, our skin, our weight, and our flexibility. But what about our minds? Each of us tackle the day differently; whether we do some yoga with green tea, or get up late and have three cups of coffee (guilty), it doesn’t matter as long as your way suits you.
On the flip side though, we’ve all experienced those mornings when the alarm doesn’t go off, the bus arrives late, and we practically fall into the office. Somehow, when we’ve had a manic morning, the rest of our day seems to be thrown off, too.
So how can we ensure we start the day right? We asked Colin McDonnell from Psychotherapy Dublin to find out how what we get up to in AM can impact the rest of our day.
The smallest change or interruption to these rituals can have the largest imaginable impacts.
Can our morning habits really make a difference to our day?
“Certainly,” says Colin. “Humans derive a certain pleasure from ritualistic behaviour. This repetition can be extremely comforting and enjoyable. Finding a way of operating that suits your needs can affect all facets of your life including social, sexual, and work aspects.”
The crux? “The smallest change or interruption to these rituals can have the largest imaginable impacts. Not only to your morning, but to your entire day, week, month or year,” he continues. In other words, you need to start the day as you mean to go on.
How can we amp up our AM?
“It might sound easy but it’s a process that involves some real work and talking through,” advises Colin. The first step is to figure out what’s making your morning difficult. Is your wardrobe clutter making you mad, or your alarm tone driving you batty? Pin-point what’s putting a drain on your energy at the start of your day, and then go about fixing those things. As Colin explains, taking a look at these issues can “unearth modes of thinking and occurrences that hamper us throughout our lives.”
Analysing your own habits and figuring out which parts are enjoyable and which parts you can do without should be the very first step in inventing a routine.
Which habits are best?
There’s no one-size fits all when it comes to maximising your morning, Colin tells us. “There is only one rule for finding the best possible morning ritual – find it yourself. What works for others might not in a million years work for you, and vice versa. Analysing your own habits and figuring out which parts are enjoyable and which parts you can do without should be the very first step in inventing a routine.”
Whether it’s going for a run before work, spending 15 minutes extra in bed, or eating your favourite breakfast, fostering those morning habits can have a knock-on effect on the rest of your life, too. “Rather than aiming to skip down the street clinking your heels with joy, it is most beneficial to acknowledge where life can be tough and to learn to cope with those parts,” Colin explains. “Making the most of a situation, and finding enjoyment within that is key. Singing in the rain comes to mind.”
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