Are you longing for the day that you spring out of bed feeling refreshed? You truly hope and believe it’s possible and that if you can achieve this then you’re one step closer to the perfect life. The perfect life that everyone else has, but not you.
You are convinced that everyone jumps out of bed like a 4-year-old, and even that they find it easy. That means there must be something wrong with you.
We spend our lives chasing these elusive goals, only to be disappointed to never achieve them. The really sad thing is that by setting yourself this goal, and by never achieving it, you are left feeling like a failure, like you’re not good enough.
This pattern repeats itself throughout your life in different ways. You constantly find yourself in the same pattern of believing that other people have achieved the ultimate lifestyle and routine, and that you are missing out on the big secret.
You can’t wake up feeling like a 4 year old every day because you’re not. But you could wake up like a happier adult with a few simple adjustments.
Obviously there are things you can change in your routine, like not drinking alcohol the night before, going to bed early, making changes to the bedroom to make it more restful, wearing earplugs and an eye mask to block out noise and light. There are many practical changes you can make.
See these blog posts for extra info about sleep
It’s not just that though, it’s how you feel when you wake up. It’s if you wake up in a panic about everything you need to do, or if you wake up with a feeling of dread about the day ahead. It’s these things that really set you up for the day.
Whether you got enough sleep last night or not, if your first thoughts are negative ones, then how are you going to get through the day feeling happy and energetic?
Here’s something really simple that you can do:
Just notice 5 wonderful or beautiful things about your life or your environment today. It can be tricky at first but this is something you can practise at any time of the day. It works best when you first wake up though.
Your goal is to find 5 things to be grateful for, truly grateful.
Try not to make it into a competition with yourself. There are no prizes in saying things that you think you’re supposed to, like being grateful for your partner, children, job, parents etc. You might well be grateful for these but they can also be very triggering. It’s best just to stick to really simple things that you can see, hear or feel around you.
Here are some examples of things you can say to yourself to get your day off to a good start.
If you’re doing the commute to work, school or somewhere else then notice things on your drive. You can do a combination of saying thank you and noticing nice things.
On waking up
I’m so grateful that I had a bed to sleep in last night
These covers are so soft and warm
I’m glad I’ve got some heating
I’m pleased I was safe all night
Give thanks as if the world is working for you, not against you.
Thank you traffic lights for staying green.
Thank you nice person for letting me out at the junction.
Thank you for helping me find my keys.
Be observant about nature
Look at that gorgeous flower, how lovely
What a lot of different colour greens there are in the trees
Look at the ants, spiders in their webs, ladybirds or flying bugs buzzing around the flowers.
Find something happy about your transport choices
I am so lucky that I can sit in my car listening to my music on the way to work.
I am so lucky to be able to catch a bus instead of walking.
I’m so lucky that I’m able to walk.
I’m so lucky that I don’t need to join the commute today.
Observe people and buildings around you
She had a nice coat, I liked the colour.
That is such intricate brickwork; I’ve never noticed that before, it must have taken ages.
I might do my hair like that, it looked nice
I’ve never noticed this pattern on the pavement before, that’s nice.
If you work from home or don’t need to leave the house for whatever reason then you can think of a list of indoor things to be pleased about. The feeling of the water on your skin in the shower, that you have adequate time to get ready, that you didn’t have to join the queue of commuter traffic,
The list is endless. There are things to be grateful that seem boring, but they can really make a difference to your day.
You could give thanks and be grateful for lighter traffic than usual, having time to wash the dishes now instead of coming in to do them tonight, getting clean clothes out to wear, being warm, feeling safe, not rushing, working nearby, working a long way away so you get time with your music or to think, or not working. You can really find so many things to feel grateful about.
Look at the dew on the grass, find a little part of you to be thankful for the rain because it will make everything lush. Be amazed at the busy worlds of insects and birds going about their business. Smile when you see dogs out walking, and feel lucky enough to have noticed that the trees and flowers change daily, and with the seasons.
The goal is the FEEL IT. Feel what it’s like to be grateful, feel abundant, happy and at peace. When you smile because of something so simple like hearing a bird singing in the tree, or seeing busy bee it makes you feel good. See the beauty in a flower unfolding as it wakes up for the day, just like you.
Suddenly your life now becomes much more colourful. Such a simple thing can start off your day so much happier. It’s like magic, nothing else has changed in your life but you are allowing yourself to see the beauty and the gifts in waking up today.
That is the secret to happiness and enthusiasm, being grateful for what’s around you. Life doesn’t have to be going well for you to do this exercise. It’s just you claiming a few snatched seconds to allow yourself to think happy or grateful thoughts.
Try it for a week and let us know how you get on. If a week sounds too much then try if for a day, and then another day, and notice how much better it makes you feel.
With love, as always
The Just Good Living Team