My Go-to Morning Treasures

It is one of those mornings.  When I woke up, my whole face felt tight, especially my jaw.  There was such a flurry of thoughts going through my mind: all the things I didn’t get done yesterday, the past month, the past year, sadness thinking of losses, people who’ve died, people I miss, all of all the suffering in the world, regrets…and it went on and on.  

Time to dig into my morning treasure box, filled with treasures that help me shift gears, calm my nervous system, and increase the likelihood of a more present and better day.  Thankfully, I have been accumulating these for years, making them so much more accessible when I need them.

Morning Meditation/prayer.  The foundation for me is morning mediation, or prayer, or when my mind is really busy, a guided meditation.  I have had an on and off meditation practice since 1974, so I have a few options available.  There has been considerable interest in meditation during the pandemic, resulting in lots of free support. A favorite tool of mine is the free meditation App, Insight Timer.

Move.  This varies for me, sometimes I walk, or I dance to a few tunes.  Recently I completed two sessions of 30 days of Yoga with Adrienne and I am on to the next 30 day program.  There’s a reason Adrienne has 9.3 million or so subscribers on YouTube.  She is a delight to spend time with and has a library of over 500 free videos.

Pen to Paper.  Sometimes I do morning pages, Julia Cameron style, I wrote about it here. I am quite consistent with noting what I am grateful for and sometimes do my own version of a 5 minute journal, where I focus on what I am grateful for, what would make today great, and what I am learning.  

Connect with Others.  There’s nothing like the support of a good friend, especially those I can have deep and real conversations with, where I feel really seen and heard for who I am that day and can be with them in the same way.  Maybe make an appointment with a spiritual director or therapist. 

Be with Nature.  Given my love of nature and beauty, watching the moon and the sunrise can set me up for the day. Walking the bridge in my neighborhood always delights. 

Inspirational Readings. I like to have a book of poetry or spiritual readings to spend time with.  Recently, I have been reading Pema Chodron’s Living Beautifully with Uncertainty and Change. I have a collection of spiritual readings and I am often called to pull a book of the shelf for a re-read.  I have been enjoying a re-read of David Simon’s The Ten Commitments.  It is a bonus that the readings reconnected me to being in workshops at the Chopra Centre years ago, where David, with incredible presence and warmth, would read the poetry of Hafiz and Rumi. 

I notice now, that writing about this, has shifted something in me.  I feel more connected to what’s important today, to being present with others and to nature and the beauty of life.  I was intrigued to see that my niece Dawnali, a counsellor at Shift Intuit had posted this quote in social media that resonated with me, and also with my sister Ann. 

When I was a young mom, a single parent in school or working, it was more difficult to find the time to pull out these treasures.   Sometimes it involved sitting in the car in nature with a cup of coffee, or 5 minutes in meditation, or a walk in the garden.  I’d like to think that attending to these over the years has served me well.

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