How do you welcome the day?

How do you welcome the day?

Most people follow a routine for commencing each day: some may begin by waking up to an alarm and then snoozing on for a while longer before getting up while others may get straight out of bed and commence the day with a shower, a morning walk or prayer. There are countless ways in which people commence each day, but being creatures of habit, we are likely to start the day with the same practices that we have carried out for some time. These practices which have become our habits, have been formed from the need to keep some order in our lives and the need to adhere to a particular timetable for work, family and community life and other activities.

Not only are many of our actions, including how we commence each day, performed through habit, but generally speaking, our thoughts, beliefs and feelings are also formed through habit. It is our thoughts that kick in before our actions at the commencement of each day, and so our thoughts set the scene for our day. From the moment we awake, our brains begin to formulate thoughts and messages, and it is likely that our thoughts, like our actions, follow a similar pattern each day. We may wake with a checklist going through our minds about all the jobs for the day; or we may focus first on how our body feels; or we may focus on how we feel about ourselves or how others may be perceiving us. We may look forward to the day, or face it with anxiety or dread, or face it with an attitude of ‘come what may.’

If you pause to reflect on your thoughts and feelings upon waking this morning, you will possibly notice a link to the type of day that has emerged for you. Perhaps it has been a day filled with enthusiasm, promise and action, or perhaps a day of anxiety and fear, or perhaps it is a day that you have had difficulty facing altogether. If you reflect further, you may notice that these types of days are reasonably common, particularly when you have woken up with a particular set of thoughts and feelings, which has really set the tone for the day.

Certainly, there are days that are totally different for us – out of the norm and out of routine. These may occur with some sudden news, for good or for bad, or through planned change to our regular day such as a special appointment or a holiday away.

How do you generally greet the day?

When you are mindful of the effect that your first thoughts of the day can have on the type of day that you experience, you can intentionally interrupt and challenge any automatic, habitual thinking that may be unhelpful for you in setting about your day.

Notice your thoughts upon waking each day.  If you tune into anxiety or dread, and formulate sentiments like: “I’m feeling anxious about today” or “I wish I didn’t have to get out of bed today,” it is likely that there will be anxiety and dread in your day. On the other hand, if you tune in to gratitude when you awaken, and formulate sentiments along the lines of: “Thank you for this new day. I choose to notice the many gifts in my life today,” your day is more likely to be filled with gifts and gratitude. The more frequently you perform this practice, the more readily it becomes your new habit of welcoming each day.

I can choose what sort of a day I have by choosing my thoughts that welcome the day.

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