Do you have a morning ritual? And I’m not talking here of starting the coffee before brushing your teeth or walking your dog from the left.
More and more research prompts us to devote special attention to “The Hour After Waking Up”, because it opens the door to the rest of our day and determines our state of mind.
So, which ritual to choose, how to build it?
By building on the three pillars essential to our well-being: intention, control and optimism.
- The intention
Nothing gives us more energy than being on a mission. To fulfill our destiny. The Japanese call it ikigai. Ikigai is the feeling of taking part in something bigger than ourselves or, at a minimum, of contributing directly to our universe: family, home, community, couple, clients, partners, colleagues, friends, art, garden, etc.
Finding meaning in what we do not only makes us feel alive, but also stays that way.
And that’s not all. Finding meaning in who we are, and in our actions, also makes us more attractive to others.
Our contribution to the universe, however, is not always obvious to us. And if it is impossible for us to modify our activities to save the world, we can completely reinterpret our daily life differently.
When we sort the packaging in the kitchen, we are contributing to a more sustainable planet when we cook for our own, we feed their brains; when we plant a bulb, we beautify our environment, etc.
Finding meaning is a state of mind rather than proof by result. Getting out of bed to be a knight is a lot more motivating than just leaving your quilt for the cold. A positive mindset is build day by day and is related with a good stress management.
The more we feel in control over our relationships and our choices, the more satisfied we are with our life.
Control does not mean leading and forcing, but knowing that our actions have repercussions. Advising, for example, that a patient take a few steps a day, rather than just taking medication, is key to recovery. Because he then becomes active in the process.
Bad news from the world has the opposite effect on us, because it is difficult for us to act on distant storms, massacres or declines. This feeling of control is therefore achieved by choosing a goal. Making a decision changes our perception of the world because it delivers a solution. Everything that is decided simplifies our life and gives us self-confidence. This goal can be set the day before, to take advantage of the calm it will bring to our brain, and therefore to our sleep. But you can also create a list of things to do that morning.
- The optimism
A study of military personnel has shown that endurance is more a matter of state of mind than of physical strength. Because our brain only pushes us to action if it knows it has a good chance of success. From then on, the door of our energy is wide open and we set off. And we know that optimism brings behind it a caravan of side benefits:
– live longer and in better health;
– feel more joy;
– be more resistant and persevering;
– be more appreciated by those around them;
– have more luck too, because those who create their own opportunities know themselves to be lucky.
Yoga classes can provide a path to a better understanding of life and a positive mindset. And here’s more good news: Even pessimists can learn optimism. Whistling in front of your mirror and forcing yourself to think positively doesn’t work for everyone. But anticipating the obstacles that may present themselves and how we will be able to overcome them smooths out the difficulties.