This is something I feel obliged to cover about right now because I was feeling cranky and unmotivated this morning. I woke up about two hours ago (here in Japan, that was at 9:40am and it’s a national holiday, so I got today off from work).
First off, I was cranky because I made a commitment to myself that I would wake up at 5:30am from Monday to Friday, no excuses. And I actually caught myself around 7:00am, telling myself that I already broke my promise, so I might as well rest my eyes for a little longer. Besides, I am off today. This is a scary rationalization because I am lowering my standard by using my broken promise as a way of saying that it’s already over, so stooping down a little more makes no difference.
If I allowed this reasoning to continue, this day would not end pleasantly. As a creature of habit, this rationalization can actually make a big difference for the worse. So, after I decided to crawl out of bed, I thought about why I decided to commit to waking up at 5:30am from Monday to Friday. Well, on school days, I leave my place by 6:40am and do not like rushing in the morning, so waking up at 5:30am allows me the leisure of doing my morning time of empowerment:
- drinking a glass of water,
- getting my 10 minute stretch in,
- reviewing my written down desires (a short bucket list of things I really want to do and achieve),
- meditating for 10-15 minutes,
- taking a quick shower,
- putting together a simple breakfast and protein shake,
- watching an inspirational video while I eat breakfast,
- having a cup of hot tea,
- and then getting dressed for work.
That is my ideal morning before I leave my place.
So, I realize this morning after mentally beating myself up a bit, that talking shit to myself wasn’t an effective way to make me feel better, unless I countered it with how I wanted to feel, what I can do in that moment to make me feel that way, and the pleasure I’d get by following through. It’s actually much easier than that. All I had to do was begin doing my morning time of empowerment because I already know from experience that it makes me feel amazing. That is WHY I want to wake up at 5:30am on workdays. And today is such an ideal day because I don’t have to rush going through my time of empowerment, since I have the day off.
Once I made that distinction, I immediately drank a glass of water, opened my sliding door to let natural light come in, stretched for 10 minutes, meditated for 20 minutes, rinsed my body off, sliced up some small tomatoes, a green pepper, iceberg lettuce, toasted up a slice of bread, made a shake, and listened to/watched three TGIM video episodes from Eric Thomas (aka ET), who is a very passionate dude who speaks from experience and from his soul. Every word he speaks is like a passionate strike to the heart that wakes my ass up and gets my body and mind churning (You can check out his YouTube Channel here).
I am now sipping on a cup of caramel coffee while I create this blog post, in a very refreshed state of mind because I see that now, especially when I don’t have work on weekdays, the most important part of my morning is allowing myself the time make these actions a ritual. So, waking up at 5:30am on my weekdays off is not that important to me right now. I just want to go through my time of empowerment without feeling rushed.
And I allowed myself that today.
Now, directing this to you:
When you aren’t feeling great…
What do you usually do?
What do you usually say to yourself?
What can you do?
What can you say to yourself?
This is not meant strictly to lay down a morning ritual for yourself. I was just using my morning time of empowerment in this post because it’s what I used today to get out of my ungrounded state of mind. I also wanted to write down the actions that I take on good mornings to give you ideas that you can gradually implement if anything resonates with you. Please note that I do not do my time of empowerment everyday, though I am working towards making that a reality. Right now, my morning time of empowerment in its entirety is 4-5x/week. I do believe that creating a morning ritual is very important and sets the tone for a large portion of the day.
But the reason for this post is to recognize when you are not in a good state and how you can counter that.
For example. One of my habits is I greet random people with a hello and a smile, I don’t know maybe 5-10 different people a day. I try doing this, especially when I feel a bit down because it takes me outside of this selfish internal state.
Some ideas that you might find useful when you are not in a peak state:
- Drink water
- Smile for no reason
- Greet a random person
- Send a short and positive message to a friend or family member, perhaps expressing why you appreciate them
- Take 3 deep breaths, inhaling positivity and exhaling the current stresses
- Thank the person who is ‘criticizing’ you for their honesty
- Go to the bathroom at work, sit on the toilet seat, and set an intention: happiness, inspiration, ecstasy, love, confidence, etc. Then allow 5 minutes to recall such moments in your life. Grab the memory like it’s in front of you and bring it to your heart, then say “thank you.” Grab another memory. Repeat
- Make a point that any time you compulsively check FB, you will send a message/comment to a friend. (I find that when I am feeling ‘bad,’ I tend to check FB a lot on my phone, only to scan the newsfeed without reaching out to anybody)
- Look in the mirror into your own eyes, smile, and say, “You sexy motherfucker, you”
- Repeat an incantation to yourself that you say anytime you feel insecure: “Massive rejection leads to my success,” “No thought lives in my head rent-free,” “I am responsible for everything that I do.”
Some of this stuff sounds like some new-age pop psychology woo woo shit. And maybe it is for some of you haha Some things work for others, some things don’t. Your opinions are your limitations and you have a right to your limitations. In my experience, these have helped me. But the case in point is to experiment, be open to trying new things that can help you, and intelligently gravitate towards doing those things.
What do you think? What has worked for you? What hasn’t worked for you?
Please leave a comment. If it resonates with you, feel free to “like” and spread the word.