Life consists of days. Good days, bad days, ok days, stressful days, peaceful days, weird days… well you get it. While some factors that make up a day are beyond our control, others or most factors I dare say are within our reach to do something about, if we but know how.
Now there are many ways of enhancing the quality of your day from the get go, ranging from morning exercise or a run to intermittent fasting or a light breakfast.
Today however, we’re going to discuss the art of meditation and how it can be applied in the morning hours to elevate your life, day by day.
Why you should meditate in the morning
While the benefits of meditation are many and varied, there are some special types of benefits related to doing a meditation session, however brief, first thing in the morning.
1. Sets a peaceful mood and mode for the rest of the day
First great benefit of doing meditation in the morning is that you consciously prime yourself to have a more peaceful day. This can be either through the meditation technique itself where you set a certain intention for the rest of the day or by simply allowing the meditative state to infuse you with wellbeing from the very start of the day.
2. Lowers your overall stress and anxiety levels
By simply being aware of your body, mind and mood as you wake up you naturally decrease your stress and anxiety levels, while at the same time preparing you to handle them better during the rest of the day.
3. Increases productivity and focus
By lowering stress and anxiety in the morning, you naturally allow yourself to be more productive during the rest of the day. There are quite a few studies that demonstrate how meditation can increase focus and simply help you get stuff done. A daily morning meditation routine will most likely make you more effective in whatever you do, whether at work, school or what have you.
Preparations and setting
Being comfortable is important for meditation. If you’re one that sleeps with little to no clothes on you when lying in bed, wearing something light when you stand up and start your meditation session as you wake up is recommended. We don’t want you feeling distracted by the cold on your naked body.
Speaking of cold, a couple splashes of ice-cold water on your face to wake you up and kick-start the day and those primal diving reflexes could be something to try before or after the meditation, depending on your preferences.
Moreover, depending on which meditation technique you employ, you might need different things, like a meditation cushion or bench for sitting meditation or a shawl for optimal comfort. However, for the most part, you’ll be fine with yourself as you are or what you’ve got in your vicinity.
Best ways of meditating in the morning
Now then, on to the actual meditations to best perform in the mornings. There are many different meditation techniques and methods out there to try but here are the five best suited for the morning hours.
One thing to be aware of is that you don’t have to choose just one of these and use them exclusively. Rather what I’ve found is that sometimes a combination or succession of these techniques listed below is more productive and occurs more naturally.
1. Waking up meditation
Meditation could be the very first thing you consciously do when waking up in the morning. In fact, I do this all time. By simply being aware of yourself as you start gaining consciousness, i.e. noticing the heaviness of the body as you just exit the sleep state, or by noticing how the mental system sort of boots up like a computer is a fascinating thing to be aware of. This “waking up” technique may take a little time to get used to because we’re so used to slouching and snoozing or just standing up as we wake, depending on the person. The main aim of this technique is to notice everything starting up, physically and mentally. By being aware of this, you come to understand yourself so much better, which has its own set of benefits.
2. Sitting meditation
The most popular and most effective form of meditation is sitting meditation. This is especially effective because by sitting down and turning your mind’s eye inwards you’re actually dedicating yourself both physically and psychologically to the meditation practice at hand. Doing sitting meditation in the morning is a great way of setting a certain mood for the rest of the day, like say a day of peace and appreciation.
3. Walking meditation
Walking meditation is yet another great way of meditating in the morning. Not only do you get some blood flowing in the body as you walk about, you also become super aware of the minutest sensations arising in your consciousness. One way I like do walking meditation is by simply being aware of the soles of my feet as I take a step. Though the soles of the feet are hardened and desensitized compared to other parts of the body, you’d be surprised how much you could experience by directing all of your attention to the bottom of your feet.
Top 3 guided meditations to start your day
If you’re a newcomer to meditation or if you prefer guided meditations, here are our best picks for guided meditations for better and brighter mornings.
Guided Morning Meditation by Boho Beautiful
Here is a 10-minute good start to your day by Boho Beautiful. The guide is a soothing female voice.
Guided Meditation for Positivity and Grounding by Meditation Vacation
Here is a 5-minute meditation to start your day in a positive and balanced way. The guide is a deep male voice.
Guided Meditation for Spiritual Insight by Mooji
Here is a 10-minute guided meditation by the non-dual sage Mooji. This is a great reminder of the innate freedom we all have but often forget. Mooji has a soothing deep male voice.
It is important to start your day in the right way. By adopting a meditation routine each morning you’ll enjoy life more by being a little bit lighter and brighter while simultaneously being better prepared to face the challenges that will inevitably come your way.
Daniel Seeker is a wandering dervish and lifelong student of the past, present and future. He realized deep relaxations of the psyche when meditating in his hermit cave on the island of Gotland. His writings are mostly a reflection of that realizaton. Daniel currently studies history and philosophy at Uppsala Universitet, as he is currently writing his B.A. thesis in history which explores how Buddhist and Hindu texts were first properly translated and introduced to the western world in the late 18th and 19th century.