Right now as I type this, it is Monday morning, I’ve seen my first group of patients, have a short break before the next ones arrive, and I’ve had a thought in my mind since early this morning that I thought I’d share with you. I was reading through some posts on social media outlets today, and saw varying degrees of “Monday morning” comments. As you might imagine, they ranged from “ugh, it’s Monday”, to more encouraging ones wishing everyone a great start to the week. I had a brief conversation with my 14 year old son this morning on the way to school (aren’t all conversations with 14 year old boys brief?) about the same topic. It really got me thinking about the importance of how we start our days. I always encourage people to “Finish Strong”, but I sometimes think we forget to “Start Well”. This can set the tone for an entire day, and an entire week.
So, how do you start the day? Are you the “Good God it’s morning!” person? Or are you the “Good morning God!” person? Admittedly, I have both types of days at varying times, but honestly I have to say it’s more the latter to a very large degree. I don’t think it’s because I am especially blessed, or lucky, though both of those come into play to some degree. I know I am blessed to have a profession/career that is a blast. I know I am lucky to have the wife I have (she’d agree too) etc. But beyond that, I believe there are some keys that I’ve learned in my years of living and in my years of practice and observing the habits of my patients. So, today I’ll share a couple of tidbits that work well for me to have the best chance of “Starting Well”.
First, today being Monday, that means that I arose extra early to spend time at the gym for a spin class (stationary bike class). It’s an hour of intense cardio work and calorie burning. I’ll be honest that when that alarm goes off at 4:45 on mornings like this, I always have a 3 minute conversation with myself as to whether or not I will actually get up. Getting up usually wins because I think about how great it feels afterward to have started my day in such a great manner. You may not desire to rise that early and go spin for an hour, but the point is to find some way of expending some energy right off the bat and help your day start well. You’ll be proud of yourself and thus feel better emotionally about you. You’ll release endorphins that automatically make you feel good too. You will have awakened your body and made it ready to attack the week. Consider finding some way to exercise right off the bat, even if it’s walking on a treadmill for 30 minutes, you’ll be glad you did it and learn to love the new habit.
Another way to start your day off in a wellness manner is to eat well. Fuel your body in an appropriate manner. A caramel machiotto and pastry doesn’t qualify! Remember it needs to be real food. I start my day off with a Superfood Shake with some products we carry, giving me the equivalent of 8-10 servings of organic fruits and veggies, some healthy whey protein, a solid dose of Omega 3 fish oil, and my vitamin D for the day. I add in a boiled egg often, and a piece of fruit. It’s the first chance I’ve had since the previous dinner to re-fuel so I want to make sure I do it right to avoid mid-morning cravings for twinkies, soft drinks and the like.
I also enjoy a bit of quiet time first thing every morning. Sometimes this is spent with a cup of coffee on my back porch, sometimes sitting in a comfortable chair in my family room. That’s the time I spend mentally preparing for the day, connecting with my God, reading my bible and planning out the day. It organizes my brain (as much as that is possible at least) and helps me insure that the coming day will be as productive as possible.
Lastly, if nothing else, getting up early enough to not be rushing out the door is vital. Being able to take the time to enjoy the morning time (yes it’s possible) sets a good tone for the day. Stressing because we’re running late and trying to remember all the things we need to take with us at the last minute causes stress and certainly isn’t conducive to starting well.
If you begin one or more of these habits, I think you’ll find it easier to start well, stay productive, feel better about one’s self, and banish the “Good God it’s morning” persona!
Until next time…Be Well!