The Many (Surprising) Benefits of Daily Morning Rituals
My husband and I have been roomies for one year! (And married for 11 months!) And it's been the most fantastic, mind-blowing experience. Among many of the perks of co-habitating, one of my top favs are our morning rituals. Unlike routine, rituals are intentional, mindful. They have become such an important part of my life as an individual and now of our life as a married couple.
We both had our own morning rituals that started years before we even started dating. My morning ritual then involved a daily reading from a couple of meditation books, a little bit of journaling and quiet time to set intentions for the day.
I didn’t come up with this practice on my own. It seemed to happened accidentally, when I was going through a difficult time in my life and I was desperately craving direction. The universe put people in my path who seemed to be living meaningful, intentional lives. I started asking them questions and modeling actions I could implement in my life. That is how my morning rituals (among other things) started evolving, very clumsily at first, until I found something that worked for me.
Discovering the importance of a daily practice was not an enlightened process. It was really more trial and error. Sometimes I didn’t feel like making time for reading or journaling. Other times I thought it was silly, unimportant, a pain in the butt that took some of my precious time (cause I am so busy don’t you know?). What happened is I started noticing that when I made time in the morning to “fill my tank” (read, journal, meditate), I felt more grounded, tolerant, positive, and overall moved through the rest of the day with ease.
I am a slow learner, so fine-tuning my practice was an imperfect, bumpy process. Today, after many years of practice, I couldn’t imagine a day without my morning rituals. What I do has changed with the years (as have I) but it’s become a foundation of my spiritual practice and who I am today.
I am not the only one who believes in morning rituals. I stumbled upon an interesting article on Scientific American discussing their benefits.
“People facing situations that induce anxiety typically take comfort in engaging in preparatory activities, inducing a feeling of being back in control and reducing uncertainty”.
This made sense to me on so many levels. Why not be as prepared as I can to get out there every day, to ensure I have all the energy and resources I need to live life on life’s terms, on good days and on bad days?
It's a no brainer for me.
So I had this kick-ass practice, and had figured it all out -I thought- then one day, I met the most amazing man, THE love of my life. After spending more time (and mornings) together, it was only a matter of time before we had to adjust the daily morning rituals again.
Luckily, we both have similar values and practices, but no previous experience practicing with a significant other. We tried different things until gradually we found something that works really well for us: we read, together, from a couple of books we both really like, we have (usually) un-timed quiet meditation, and all of it usually involves forms of cuddling (sorry). It not only sets the tone for the rest of our day, but it is also very mindful together time we get every morning as a couple. We always talk about living intentional lives and for us, this is a huge part of that.
I like how again, finding a new morning ritual happened naturally and again, I can’t imagine doing anything different. It’s interesting how some of the best things that happen to me occur when I (counter-intuitively) let things unfold without trying to control (much). Huh.... I am a slow learner.
Sitting in our dining room table and either drawing or writing (or both!) every night has somehow become a mini ritual too (for now). Usually it involves lots of sparkling water, tea & Spotify playlists.
Are you a morning ritual convert? Do you practice any? I’d love to know!