As the adage goes, the way you step out of bed in the morning is what sets your tone for the day. It's why people are so gung-ho and all around fascinated by morning routines. If you haven't already adopted one, then maybe consider the benefits of having a routine the next time you slap the snooze alarm into oblivion. That extra ten minutes of sleep you get? It's actually not beneficial, and won't make you feel more rested. On the other hand, if you wake up late and are immediately stressed and exhausted and hurried, the prospects of your day looking up from there (without a few caffeine infusions and carb-loading sessions and a nap) are pretty bleak.
We deserve to take care of ourselves in the little moments. As Cheryl Strayed says, real change happens at the level of the gesture — it's one person doing one thing differently than they did before. And I think we all deserve to approach our lives with a little more mindfulness, a little more care, a little more love and a little more well-deserved chill time. Here are 10 ways you can get started on it, from the moment you wake up in the morning:
Hold yourself in a child's pose for a few minutes (we'll get to more yoga in a minute). Make it a point to stretch each of your limbs and your neck and shoulders, routinely. The thing about having a healthy, functional, not-stressed-with-knots back is by taking care of it before it gets to that point. Start each day and wake yourself up gently.
It makes you glowy and happy and I mean, do I need to mount the evidence (hehe) to tell you it's a good idea? (Probably not. Carry on.)
Hold A Yoga Pose For A Few Seconds
Pick something that feels like it awakens some part of you (I personally do the Eagle Pose with my hands and legs). But Child's Pose works too, or something else that's simple and can be sustained on a soft surface. It's like, Stretching Level Two for Morning Life Game Winners.
Take A Moment Of Silence
Before you stumble out of bed to get coffee and generally be annoyed until you have a bagel in your system, take a moment to really just wake up and let yourself be, before all the thoughts of what you should do and could do and need to do right this minute flood you for the rest of the day.
Read Something That's Not On Your Twitter Feed
If it won't put you back to sleep, read a page of your favorite book. Read a tab you left open of an article you were enjoying the night before. Intend to start your day with something meaningful or inspirational. It will make a difference, believe it or not.
Get Up Slowly
Rather than jump up or all but half-consciously fall over, sit up, then sit on the side of your bed for a few minutes and take a few deep breaths. It's only a few seconds difference, but really, starting each day reminding your body that rushing through life is no way to live is the best (and sometimes most radical) thing you can do.
Drink Coffee In Bed
Sit back on your bed with your coffee and just relax for 5 minutes or so. Drink it while you read something, or whatever else you want to do. (Masturbate? I don't know your life.) This is, of course, if you're a rare breed of Functioning Person that can sit on a surface and not spill on it. This is only really for you.
Don't Get Back In Bed Until You're Ready To Sleep
Snuggle If You Have Someone
If you can wake up 15 minutes earlier just to lay with someone you love, do it. Do it, do it, do it. It's more than just a good morning kiss or a peck as you're out the door, it's just a moment of silence between you, before everything else starts. It is magical and beautiful and everybody deserves to let the sunlight stream in as they're held. (Damn it, if heaven exists, that might be mine.)
Snuggle If You Don't
This is more important than if you have a partner: snuggle yourself if you don't. Massage your legs with lotion for a second, or just literally wrap your arms around yourself and be grateful to be in the moment. You don't need anybody to form around your body as though you're a puzzle piece incomplete on your own. Show yourself that you love yourself, in the simplest way you can.
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