How can we transform our typically frantic mornings into peaceful ones? To find out the secret to a more mindful AM, we asked our Spoon Squad for their hacks to find space and calm in the first few hours of the day.
Splendid Spoon: Do you follow a sleep ritual to set you up for a productive morning?
Shayla Quinn: Yes! I do a few things. I have a warm bath or shower to relax, and then take a vegan magnesium supplement, which is a great natural muscle relaxer, before climbing into bed. [Increasing magnesium intake has been shown to help muscles and improve sleep quality! — Ed.] I put my phone on silent, place it face down, and turn on my white noise machine. This background noise helps me sleep through the night. I also like to play Deepak Chopra’s Soul of Healing CD (also available in new-fangled streaming format here, here, and here — Ed.) which is full of positive affirmations :).
Before I close my eyes I think about my schedule for the next day and visualize everything going smoothly! This helps me wake up in a calm and happy mood. If I’m feeling restless, I do some simple pranayama (breathwork): inhale for 5 and exhale for 5. I’m usually asleep before the third round!
SS: How do you start your morning?
SQ: I wake up early and (I’m not proud of this habit!) I usually reach for my phone straight away! I scroll through my notifications to see if there’s anything pressing before I get up. Then I make my bed, meditate for at least 5 minutes, and take my dog Penny for a walk. Both my meditation and walk are key mindfulness practices for me. I always take time to breathe deeply and simply be present.
SS: What does your typical breakfast look like?
SQ: I’m not normally super hungry in the morning. I tend to have a banana and a green juice.
SS: Do you caffeinate?
SQ: I do, but not first thing in the morning. It’s a mid-morning thing for me!
SS: How do your mindful moments impact the rest of your day?
SQ: Having a morning mindful practice allows me to get grounded and present. This enables me to move through the rest of the day with ease and direction. When I don’t take time for my morning ritual, (or I don’t leave myself enough time, so my morning is rushed) my day feels unproductive and frazzled.
SS: What’s next in your day?
SQ: Depending on the day, either teaching yoga, a workout, a hike, or practicing yoga!
SS: What’s your top tip for a mindful morning?
SQ: Make your morning ritual a priority! Schedule in time before your day starts for a morning routine. [Make it a real calendar event to maximize your chances of doing it! — Ed.] I always try to give myself at least 30 minutes for my morning ritual.