Morning Rituals: 10 Effective Stress Relief Activities

by Physical Wellness, Relaxation Techniques

For Oprah Winfrey, a daily dose of morning meditation roars her to life.

For Olympic gold medalist Misty May-Treanor, a nourishing plate of early morning breakfast sets her up for a winning day.

So, what am I driving at?

Well, like these stars(and other high achievers), having reverence and deep respect for such unique morning rituals will relax your mental state and make you perform at your peak all day long.

Here we look at wonderful morning rituals for productivity and to calm anxiety that you can integrate into your lifestyle to bring tons of positivity and empower your days.

Immediate Meditation

Research suggests that regular meditation could physically jazz up your brain and could potentially improve health problems such as anxiety and depression.

Unsurprisingly, it’s a favorite morning ritual for success and happiness among a big chunk of tremendously successful people.

As such, I urge you to set aside a couple of minutes every morning (let’s say from 10 minutes depending on how much time you have on your hands) to indulge in a rewarding morning meditation ritual.

I highly recommend a meditation app- some won’t cost you a penny- if you’re a beginner.

Devotees of instant mindfulness and meditation do it every daybreak and see real change come to their days and you could be in line for a similar change of fortunes.

Mother and daughter yoga at home

Practice Light Stress Relief Exercises

You probably have a hazy sense that breaking a sweat can enact abundant goodness to your body and brain but the procrastination devil has been strong at work and you keep rescheduling it.

Here is the thing: physical activity invigorates blood flow and stimulates expansive chemical changes in your brain leading to an elevated understanding of tough topics, brighter mood, and the development of critical thinking prowess. 

Incredibly, you don’t need to push your body through devastatingly exhausting workouts- even a set of truly simple exercises can bring profound changes to your wholesome wellbeing bit-by-bit.

The list of these simple morning exercises can be expansive – leg squats, stretching, push-ups, jumping jacks, jogging…you name them-   and its best to select (and stick to) what works for you. 

Trust me, you will forever be grateful. : For your safety, speak to a medical professional before taking up exercise if it’s your first time.

Work On Stress Relief Activities That You Enjoy

Another morning priming routine to achieve astronomical growing popularity in recent days is immersing in a project that you absolutely love first thing at dawn.

Forget about the flurry of email and social media notifications buzzing on the phone as soon as the alarm jolts you awake.

I understand that they are overwhelmingly tempting but truth is, the latest gossip, Instagram post, and breaking news tweet can wait.

In fact, the last thing you want is to read/watch something from a random stranger that makes negative thoughts crowd your mind and trigger distracting emotions (can you relate?).

On the converse, participating in fascinating tasks such as photographing the scenic sunrise or writing can usher in an indescribable thrill and give you the momentum to win your daily battles.

Plus, it can mark the start of unprecedented accomplishments in your hobbies and interests and who knows? It might take your life in an altogether new (and more fulfilling) direction.

Now, if that’s not enough an incentive to get you out of your comfort zone, tell me what is!

Macro shot of pouring water into a glass

Drinking-Water is the Best Stress Relief Drink

Water is magical and perhaps the most phenomenal substance available to all living things.

Taking a glass or two will help recharge your body’s hydration reserves and make you better equipped to handle whatever is in store for you in the upcoming hours.

Additionally, research has shown that persistent dehydration revitalizes the production of cortisol (the stress hormone) making overcoming everyday issues a daunting chore.

In short, a glass of water can be the silver bullet that rescues you from mental misery and could help you perform miracles at work.

Add it to your morning ritual book and make this the way you kickstart all your days.

Take Time for Breakfast

To follow up on the issue of getting our bodies prepped in the morning as a surefire way of minimizing stress and reaching optimal physical performance later in the day, it’s important that you make breakfast part of your A.M. rituals.

The benefits can be bountiful- according to a study, eating a quality breakfast (as opposed to skipping or having crappy meals) reduces stress and elevates your concentration and output throughout the day.

Moreover, you get better memory and it will help you subdue daytime cravings (often blamed for increased junk food intake).

Problem is, preparation and cooking bacon, veggies, and other nutrients-rich recipes can eat up your precious early morning minutes causing you to be late to work.

But much like other busy people who once struggled with this particular job, rising up a bit earlier and overhauling your breakfast prepping routine will see you make breakfast happen religiously.

You can, for example, prepare it the night before or even choose to fry an egg (or two) when in a rush.

Plenty of such hacks abound online and the previously mentioned rewards should motivate you to take up a healthy breakfast routine.

Branches of birch with earrings covered with hoarfrost against the background of the early winter morning sun

Bask in the Sun

Isn’t it mind-blowing that nature has all these answers to our wellness and health questions?

Listen to this: exposure to sunlight raises the release of the mood-boosting hormone serotonin by your brain and is known to originate a calming effect and more alertness.

What’s more, sunlight significantly lowers the depression in victims of seasonal affective disorder (SAD)- a type of depression tied to natural changes in seasons. 

And so it’s time to change your ways if you have been shunning the sun given its association with skin cancer and problems like premature aging.

Tip: Talk to your bosses and request changes to your office design to allow sunlight to seep in. You will kill two birds with one stone- soak in the warm early morning sun and work.

Plunge into Water Therapy

I won’t lie that switching to a cold bath is easy but it’s worth a try going by the torrents of confirmed goodness.

From physiological effects such as increased heart rate promoting circulation to deeper breathing soothing tension and everything in between, a cold water treat in the morning can make a massive difference to your days.

If you are a man, your partner will also thank you…. It is a great stress relief therapy.

Look: Higher temperatures around the male sex organ impede testosterone levels and plunging into an icy shower at cockcrow revitalizes this vital male sex hormone bringing passion back to your bedroom.

It’s understandable if you feel unprepared to take the leap straightaway.

Just start with warm water and shift to cold water towards the tail end (for about 10-30 seconds) and adapt gradually.

Another practical approach is bathing in warm water and then move to cold water briefly (like for 30 seconds) and again back to warm water until your body becomes accustomed.

Motivation concept, Woman hands holding card i can do it with scissor.

Recite Positive Affirmations to Set your Mind Right

Creating time to have positive self-talk can be a great way to start your morning.

The internal dialogue will pump up your self-esteem because you are saying encouraging statements to yourself with a goal of discarding limiting beliefs and imparting a more cheerful outlook to your mind.

Nothing can be as powerful as a positive attitude to every sphere of life- you will close deals that nobody believes you can and surmount nearly all other previously immovable obstacles including toxic supervisors.

The trickle-down effect of influential morning affirmations will be felt far and wide- you will experience satisfaction with life, improve your immune function, and even become a better parent at home.

And all you have is to speak to your mind statements such as “I have bountiful powers”, “I will give my all to positively impact others”, “I am a born winner”, and more every crack of dawn.

Plan your Day

I’m sure you have read about it in the past but I will reiterate it:  Plan ahead thoroughly if you harbor dreams of joining the exclusive club of overachievers.

Kobe Bryant won Olympic gold in 2012 and he says he never woke up –not even once- without knowing what the day ahead looked like that year.

He needed to get his priorities right to stand a chance.

Planning also prepares you for stumbling blocks that can stress you along the way because you will discover them before they crop up and mess your days.

It’s a common theme among legendary entrepreneurs and leaders and I’m convinced that it will give your days a welcome sense of direction.

Make it a key part of your morning rituals.

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re a sportsperson, businessperson, scientist, nurse, college student, consultant, soldier, salesperson, banker, academic, or multi-tasking professional, having some morning rituals (and discipline to undertake them daily) can be extraordinarily helpful.

It will get you into the mood and give you a proper mindset to conquer your troubles and get the most out of your days, every day.

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