Have you ever wished you could go back and start your day over again? You’re frustrated, irritable, and nothing seems to go right. If only you could go back and re-do those first few minutes. Problems can crop up any time, but if you start your day right it surely increases the chances that the rest of your day will be positive.
The routine has become a cliché in today’s busy world: get up late, grab some coffee, skip breakfast, skip almost everything, and slide into work frazzled and distracted. You may have snapped at your spouse or your kids in the mad morning rush. And then it takes you an hour or more to begin getting any real work done. Your family, your boss, your coworkers – hey, YOU! – aren’t getting your best when your day begins that way. And we haven’t even mentioned God yet. Doesn’t He deserve something?
If you plan ahead, you can start your day right in just a matter of minutes. No, I don’t do it perfectly. But when I do these things, the rest of my day certainly goes better. And it will for you too.
3 Super-Starters for your Day
1. Feed Your Spirit
When you’re totally empty on the inside it shows on the outside. For those who can, spending an hour with God in the morning is beautiful. I’ve done that during much of my life, and it’s during those times that my spiritual life has grown the most.
But don’t neglect your spirit even if you can’t spend that amount of time. You wouldn’t neglect to eat just because you didn’t have time to sit down to a gourmet meal! You may not get everything in a moment that you would get with an extended period of time with God. But you get something!
That morning moment with God does several things:
- Connects you with God at the start of your day
- Reminds you that “He’s got this!”
- Nourishes your soul, even if just a little
- Improves your attitude – calmer, kinder, more courageous, more responsible
- May provide an important insight from God on some challenge you’re facing
If it’s just 5 minutes, it’s worth it.
Reading from the Bible is always great. If you enjoy a daily devotional, here are a few possible online resources to use for that spiritual breakfast:
- www.bible.com (I use the Bible app almost daily for much of my Bible reading. They have many daily reading plans available also.)
- Ransomed Heart
- Our Daily Bread
2. Nourish Your Body
You’ve heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. And yes, it’s true. Kids who have breakfast do better in school academically and behaviorally. Think what that might mean for adults who are embarking on a stress-filled day.
And that doesn’t mean grabbing a donut as you walk into work!
But it doesn’t have to take a lot of time, either. Here are a few ideas.
- Drink a glass of water when you first get up. Your body is dehydrated, and water will help your brain and your GI system wake up and get ready for the day.
- Take JuicePlus+. The “fruits and vegetables in a capsule” help to make up the difference between a reasonably healthy diet and the nutrients your body’s cells truly need.
- Go for protein. In a rush? Try some almonds, string-cheese, peanut butter on apple slices, or some Greek yogurt.
- Go for fruit or veggies. Again, in a rush? Try a few dried blueberries, an apple, or a handful of grapes. The phytonutrients and fiber will do you good.
If you really want to get your mind and body jazzed up, do a 20-minute workout in the morning. I guarantee you’ll be more alert and productive when you get to wherever you’re going for the day.
3. Reach Out and Touch Someone
OK, you don’t have to do this if you’re a hermit.
But assuming you live in the real world, people matter. How you treat them matters. It matters not only for them, but for your future. (Remember, who will be around you on your deathbed?!)
In a busy morning you don’t have time for a long conversation. But you DO have time to connect! And it is an important part of investing in your most important relationships.
- If you’re married, say “I love you!” Kiss and hug. Every morning. No matter what. No excuses!!!
- If you have kids, tell them “I love you!” Every morning. No matter what. No excuses!!!
- No complaining, nagging, or criticizing. If any of that is needed, save it for another time. (You don’t really know, for sure, when you’ll see them again.)
- Choose at least one person that you will reach out to today with a phone call, an encouraging Facebook post or email, or some other connection. Choose to go beyond yourself.
None of these things takes more than a few minutes to do. It’s certainly worth setting your alarm 15 minutes earlier if you need to. You’ll more than make up for that time in increased productivity, mental clarity, peace and joy.
Your Turn: What’s your normal morning routine like? What could you do to start the day better? Leave a comment below.
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