The best ways to start your day, according to experts
Make your mornings really count with these expert tips on the optimum ways to kick-start your day for better mental, physical and emotional health.
Each new day brings a chance for a fresh start.
We asked five experts for their top tips for using mornings wisely – so you can get out of the right side of bed, every day.
Mary Hoang, psychologist: Wake up mindfully
“Firstly, set your alarm so that you have ample time to ease into the morning,” says Mary.
“Try to resist getting sucked into the seductive glow of the smartphone and give your body time to adjust to the feeling of awake-ness. Move into your fingers and your toes, stretch your body and allow your eyes to adjust to the day.
“Keep a journal nearby your bed and before you launch into things, take a moment to write down three things you’re grateful for, three great things that happened in the past 24 hours, and three things that would make the day great.
“Some physical activity to start the day is good too. After a workout, it’s helpful to enjoy a few moments of stillness.
“To get your mind centred and primed for focus and productivity, a 10-minute mindfulness meditation is perfect.
“It offers you the opportunity to clear your head and connect with your breathing before facing the frantic energy of daily work and life demands.”
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Mim Beim, naturopath: Take a breather
“A good thing to do when you wake is to take several slow breaths, in and out of your nose,” says Mim.
“Four seconds in and six seconds out for around two to three minutes would be ideal.
“This breathing rate (ie. six breaths a minute) has been shown to increase heart rate variability and to decrease stress levels.”
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Skye Swaney, dietitian: Eat a nutritious breakfast
“Start the day with a breakfast containing low GI carbohydrates, protein and some healthy fat, such as porridge with nuts, eggs on wholegrain toast or a smoothie with fruit and yoghurt,” says Skye.
“Rehydrating in the morning is also really important as you’ve most likely not had anything to drink for seven to eight hours. Water or a cup of herbal tea is a great way to do this.”
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Fiona Craig, life balance coach: Build a morning routine
“I wake up at 6am, drink 500ml water by my bed, 20 minutes to meditate, change into exercise clothes, then apple, ginger and celery juice. I love a banana and porridge and almond milk breakfast,” says Fiona.
“If it’s a busy client day, I have one poached egg with avocado on toast, fried tomato, feta and balsamic vinegar drizzle.
“This routine helps me to be centred, calm and energised. It’s important that any mourning routine you create helps you start your day positively so you can feel happier and healthier.”
Molly Kate, personal trainer and yoga instructor: Count your blessings
“My alarm goes off and I turn on the light as soon as possible—nothing good has ever come from hitting the snooze button!” says Molly.
“On the way to work I try to count off a few things I’m grateful for.
“Also (it’s good to) remind yourself that you are truly worth the work you’re putting in to achieve your goals; be patient, you’re perfect in all of your imperfections and missteps; and to just breathe.”
Written by Tania Gomez.