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October 2011
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By Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S.
Associate Editor


I’m a nightmare in the mornings. Seriously. Usually, I either begrudgingly shoot out of bed or crawl out — negative thoughts already swirling in my brain. Before I’ve even started my day, I’m already tense and irritated.


Maybe you can relate to being stressed or negative before you even leave the house (or in my case, walk a few steps into the home office). Not surprisingly, this doesn’t set the best tone for your day. Here’s a list of easy-peasy tips to perk up your mood and relieve any tension every morning.


1. Take a hot shower.


Water is known for having calming effects. A shower can soothe any aches and pains and help you feel refreshed and ready for the day. It does a great job of washing away your grogginess, too. (And you smell better! It’s a win-win for everyone.)

 


2. Eat an energy-boosting and fulfilling breakfast.


Many of us sprint out the door with a strong cup of coffee and maybe a boring bagel, if we remember to eat. Instead, take a few minutes to sit down and savor your breakfast. Pay attention to the tastes, textures and scents. If you don’t have time, still take foods on the go that you genuinely enjoy eating. Eating something nutritious and tasty nourishes both your body and your mind.


3. Notice the beauty of Mother Nature.


On your way to work, pay attention to the changing leaves and fragrant flowers, the sunshine or rainfall and the shapes the clouds have made. As Jeffrey Brantley, MD, and Wendy Millstine write in their book Five Good Minutes: 100 Morning Practices to Help You Stay Calm & Focused All Day Long: “Nature is bountiful and plentiful, and yet we often forget to take notice of nature’s simple gifts of joy and serenity…When you take this time to open your senses to the pleasures of what is just outside your door, you open your mind and body to nature’s restorative power to soothe and heal you.”


4. Take five minutes to tune into your breathing.


This can really help release any tension. Brantley and Millstine write:


Sitting or lying down, place your hand on your abdomen and inhale and exhale, deeply and slowly. Visualize a meadow with a small creek running through it. You are wading in a babbling brook, and you can hear the wind and the birds overhead. The current tugs gently at your ankles. Recognize the rhythm of your breathing. As you inhale, say the word “warm” aloud. Imagine the warmth of the sun and water around your body. As you exhale, say the word “heavy” to yourself. Allow yourself to reach a comfortable and soothing place from within.


(I guess the key is to do this without falling back asleep!)


5. Take a morning walk.


Sunlight is a mood booster. So is physical activity. Put them together, and you have a great way to start your day. Of course, if walking isn’t your thing, you can stretch first thing in the a.m. or participate in any other physical activities you enjoy.


Read in Full:

http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2011/10/12/8-ways-to-relax-and-boost-your-mood-in-the-mornings/

 

Waking from a beautiful dream



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