a morning routine actually begins the night before: setting ourselves up for a night of deep sleep is good practice if we’re to wake feeling well.
STORIES · 09.06.20
Mindful Living | Well-Being
I’m an early riser – I usually get up at around 5am – and the first few hours of the morning are very important to me. The small repeated acts that make up my routine shape the tone and mood for the rest of my day and I witness a real shift in my behaviour and my outlook when I give myself that time – if I miss them I’ll feel off centre, like something is out of balance. And during this isolation period especially, that sense of regularity and structure that comes from having a morning routine has felt particularly steadying and necessary.
It was in Hal Elrod’s book The Miracle Morning that I first discovered the power of positive morning habits. However, what he also makes clear is that a morning routine actually begins the night before: setting ourselves up for a night of deep sleep is good practice if we’re to wake feeling well. I’ll often have a bath before bed, or use essential oils, such as lavender, camomile, patchouli and vetiver to ease my body into sleep.
The day always begins with a dog walk. Nature in the early hours is often at its most beautiful; the light is soft and tranquil and there’s just the sound of the birdsong overhead. Once we’re back, turning to stillness and my thoughts become the focus of my time.
I’ve spoken and written many times about my meditation practice, but over the past few months I’ve deepened my practice, extending the length of time I meditate and I’ve begun to notice how much it really affects my mindset and how calm and clear-headed I feel throughout the rest of the day. I practice meditation and breathing exercises with my teacher, Vettri. We will always end with a Sanskrit prayer together, reminding me to be grateful for the day. Depending on the day we might also do some yoga. I practise a slow, gentle and restorative form of hatha yoga with Vettri centred around a lot of breath work – bringing my body in tune with the breath.
I will often come back to particular phrases or quotes – positive affirmations that might direct my own thoughts later in the day.
Something that I’ve found particularly nourishing during this isolation period has been setting aside a few moments to read something inspiring or uplifting. I’ve recently been enjoying The Book of Secrets: 112 meditations to discover the mystery within by Osho. Each page pulls you deeper into the art of self-realisation and challenges us to break free of the belief systems we’ve clung to. I will often come back to particular phrases or quotes – positive affirmations that might direct my own thoughts later in the day.
I follow a very simple Bamford skincare routine, just cleansing and moisturising, then I’ll use an SPF to protect my skin. Scent is something I believe can also impact our mood and our mind and in the morning, I turn to products infused with peppermint and eucalyptus because they feel invigorating; the refreshing scent gives me a lift. And I’ll always use a spray of Bamford’s ‘One Morning’, a refreshing light water fragranced with violet leaf and iris.
Breakfast will always include some seasonal fruits – perhaps with yoghurt or mixed through muesli. The summer fruits are starting to arrive so at the moment there will be strawberries and soft peaches. Alongside that, I’ll have a juice shot of turmeric and ginger. Both have powerful anti-inflammatory properties that can also help boost the immune system. The fiery ginger feels like a bit of kick in the morning – energising as I move into my day.