Health & Wellness

5 Happy Habits to Start Your Day

sunrise stretchYou can feel better in less than 10 minutes a day!

  1. Thank God for His love and mercy

Before you get out of bed, take a moment to acknowledge God.  If you don’t believe in a higher power, simply think about one thing you are grateful for:  your family, a roof over your head, juicy peaches, whatever…

It doesn’t matter “what” you are grateful for as long as it brings a smile to your face.

2. Pick a positive affirmation and SAY IT OUT LOUD

I like this one from Joel Osteen:

This is going to be a great day.  I’m excited about my future.  I have the favor of God, no weapon formed against me will prosper.  I AM STRONG. I AM HEALTHY. I AM BLESSED.

3. Take 10 deep breaths

Sit in a chair in a tall, upright position or stand with your legs about hip distance apart.

  • Prepare by taking 3 breaths in through your nose and out through your mouth making an “haaaa” sound.
  • Then start a slow and steady inhale (at least 5 counts) in through your nose.  Imagine your have a big rubber band wrapped around your lower ribs (for the girls, think of the tight strap of a sports bra) and as you inhale, use your breath to stretch the rubber band outward.
  • Hold the breath in for a moment then exhale completely through your nose for 5 to 7 counts.
  • Repeat for a total of 10 breaths.

4. Make your bed

Make your bed first thing in the morning and you’ll be less likely to climb back in when you feel fatigued later in the day.  It is OK to lay down on the couch from time to time but you should leave the bed for sleeping at night only. (I’ll specifically address the subject of sleep hygiene in a future post).

This habit will also bring more meaning and productivity to your day.  I read an editorial in the WSJ a while back by Admiral William H. McRaven about the lessons he learned in Navy SEAL Training. I felt inspired at the time.  It was not until I finally applied it to my life that I realized how powerful his message is:

“If you make your bed every morning you will have accomplished the first task of the day. It will give you a small sense of pride and it will encourage you to do another task and another and another. By the end of the day, that one task completed will have turned into many tasks completed. Making your bed will also reinforce the fact that little things in life matter.”

5. Drink a tall glass of water

It is important to stay hydrated to avoid unnecessary suffering.  Even mild dehydration can give you a headache and make you feel sluggish and down.

Drink at least 16 oz of purified or filtered water every morning.

You can add a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar for its health benefits.  A squeeze of lemon juice is also helpful for a little energy boost.  But plain old water is perfectly fine for reducing one’s craving for caffeine in the morning.


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