NOTEBOOK: 15 Minute Morning Routine

31 Jul

Title: 15 Minute Morning Routine as outlined in the 7-Day Stress Reduction Challenge from SCD Lifestyle.

Introduction: Healing needs to take a multi-faceted approach. It’s not enough to change your diet, eliminate inflammatory foods and pop $200 worth of supplements every month (I write that with a small amount of scorn because I just finished tallying my monthly supplement total. Gah! I think it’s time to put a friendly “donate to the blogger” button on this blog!!). Anyway…right. It’s not enough to change diet and pop pills! Because when have those two things EVER been enough?? You absolutely need to manage your stress levels! Lower your stress! As I tell the kids – that is not a REQUEST, it is a REQUIREMENT! Well, my stress levels have been through the roof lately and I finally decided enough was enough. I signed up for the 7-Day Stress Reduction Challenge courtesy of the friendly and knowledgeable duo over at SCD Lifestyle and implemented the 15 minute morning ritual that was described in one of the emails. A 15 minute podcast that guides you through from start to finish will help you re-group, decompress, and start the day off with a little more pep in your step and a smile on your face! It totally works. Especially when you’re sitting on the floor yogi-style chanting aloud, “I’m SO grateful for my fish tank…I’m SO grateful for my fiancee…I’m SO grateful for my students…” and your fiancee happens to walk by and give you the “she’s officially lost it” look.

Method: I strongly suggest you head over to SCD Lifestyle and sign up for the 7-Day Stress Reduction Challenge and follow it from start to finish. And if you have money to spend, pop over to http://www.makeoveryourmorning.com/ (run by the same awesome duo) and please purchase a complimentary program for me because I’d LOVE to try it! (Just kidding – but only slightly…).

Anyway, here’s the official breakdown of the 15 minute morning routine:

Minutes 1-5: Roll out of bed. Stumble around for your glasses and wall-walk your way into the kitchen for a glass. Or simply spill the full glass of water next to the bed that you set out the night before and briefly panic that you’ve ruined your phone and hearing aids in the process. You know, whatever works. Then drink the glass of water!

Minutes 5-10: Surf YouTube (preferably BEFORE starting the routine…) for some 5 minute yoga videos. I was surprised at how many there were! My current favorite is from YogaSamadhi. Perform the 5 minute yoga routine half-asleep all the while telling yourself you WILL get better!

Minutes 10-15: Sit quietly and practice your “Triangle Breathing“. If you’re anything like I am and have a busy mind, you’ll be constantly steering your thoughts away from your To-Do List, the piece of lint on the floor 5 feet away from you, the fact that you still have to sautee your breakfast fruit, reminding yourself to grab your homemade shampoo from the fridge before showering, and … Well, you get the picture. Let’s just say I’m ready for bed after my Triangle Breathing, but I’m working on non-judgmentally guiding my thoughts back to my breath! (I totally just sounded like a fortune cookie, I know).

Initiated: Monday, July 23 2012

Duration: Ongoing!

Conclusion: I LOVE this ritual. I wish I could afford the full program to explore the tweaks and additional information, but after crunching the numbers for my monthly supplement bill…Yeah. 😦 I think it is incredibly important to start the day off hydrated and to get the lymphatic system moving with some easy stretching or a sun salutation. I’ve been doing daily yoga for some time now and have definitely noticed that I am much less grumpy when I’ve been yoga-tized. The best part is that no one is telling you to join a gym or do a 1 hour Ashtanga routine (for the non-yogis out there, that’s code for “really advanced yoga in a sweltering hot room”). I think it’s easy to get caught up in illness and suffering and to forget that we have so much to be grateful for regardless of our current struggles with ill health. Don’t skip over the grateful chanting! And please, remember to breathe! I have actually been making a conscious effort to be more mindful of my breathing not just in the morning during the routine, but throughout the day as well. I have been realizing that I hold my breath a LOT during the day! No wonder I was dizzy half the time! Anyway, I have been more relaxed this week and much more focused during the day. I find myself looking forward to the morning routine and have extended it a little to include yoga videos of varying lengths and skill levels. The nice part about the 7-Day Stress Reduction Challenge is that it guides you through the Triangle Breathing, yoga, and other stress reduction exercises throughout the week before combining them into the ritual. Commit to trying it for one week. That’s it. A mere 105 minutes of your week is all it will take to convince you that it’s not all about food, medicine, or supplements, it’s about taking time out to be with yourself too!

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