New Year New Routine

The New Year is a fabulous time to review patterns of behaviour, what works for us and what can make life even fuller, happier and healthier. So often we can let life happen to us, reacting to and dealing with events around us, rather than taking control and choosing the things that serve us. We know what we should be doing, eating and how to exercise but finding the time to do this on top of a busy schedule can be a challenge.

So if like me you feel that the New Year is the perfect opportunity to start making some changes then here are Rachel’s top R’s

  • Relevance – what is the relevance to you in making life changes? Be guided by what you feel you need rather than what other people tell you. You are more likely to succeed if it is something that you are truly driven by.
  • Realistic – Start small. Even small changes in behaviour can have an avalanche effect.
  • Repetition – It only takes 30 days of repeating a behaviour for it to become a new habit.

Making that change about the way you start your day could have a dramatic change on how you deal with the rest of the day.

When we start the day on the back foot, we spend the rest of the day trying to catch up with ourselves, always one step behind and therefore reacting to the day rather than directing it. We make it through the day but imagine if we could lead the day with a clear mind.

I would like to share my changes since the New Year:

#1 “I” start the day. I choose to get up early to make a good start to my day. So often in the past I have begged to be able to stay in bed. I have put my alarm on snooze, and snooze and snooze again, leaving it until the very last minute… and then another 5 before getting out of bed. The result: I arrive at work late, I spend the whole day trying to catch up and then I leave work late. Final result: my whole day is gone and I am exhausted. Now I find myself ahead of schedule with time between tasks.

Hot ginger tea#2 A lifelong caffeine addict, I am now addicted to my fresh lemon, ginger and manuka honey hot drinks. I make my first drink early in the morning. It is delicious and I keep topping it up with hot water throughout the day. It is great cool as well. The reason that I chose lemon and ginger was because of the benefits in reducing inflammation. It wasn’t my intention to necessarily give up caffeine but I am finding myself feeling so much brighter and lighter I actually don’t feel like coffee. I used to use coffee to “hold me up” in the morning and through the day but now I actually float through the day and look forward to my refreshing drinks, knowing that they are also helping my immune system.

#3 I start the day with Yoga. Just 45 minutes makes such a difference. It gives me a reason to get out of bed early and I get all the benefits of getting the body moving early, getting the embers of the fires burning as well as clearing the mind. Through the day I feel sharper, more focussed and more motivated. I can always do more yoga later in the day, but I know that if I have a busy day, that I have still got my practice in. I find it helpful to actually go to class, it gives me a structured time and place for the practice so I know that I will do it. With three morning classes spread throughout the week at Kula now, this is perfect.

porridge_with_berries_50767_16x9#4 Once I have built up my appetite, I am ready for my bowl of porridge. Breakfast is seriously my favourite meal of the day and how can it not be with this delicious bowl of porridge filled with goodness. OK, so I sling everything that is delicious and healthy in there but you don’t necessarily need to. In mine there is porridge oats, soya milk, poppy seeds, pumpkin seeds, linseeds, strawberries, blackberries, blueberries and banana. Yum!

#5 Now I am ready to start my day and I feel great. I don’t actually have any other goals throughout the day but guess what, I naturally want to continue with my lemon and ginger drinks, I automatically find myself eating healthier, I feel like I have more time, more energy and I have already done my yoga practice.

Rachel teaches Pregnancy Yoga & Wake Up Flow at Yoga Kula Leeds.