There are several misconceptions behind the idea of cultivating calm in your life, including that you have to endure lengthy, grueling meditations every single day.
Although I’m sure there are some people that choose to do this, it’s definitely not the majority.
Creating your own calm can mean many things, the basic idea behind it is to turn your attention inward and truly reflect on your life, your thoughts and your emotions.
It means slowing down and being mindful of the things you do. It means being at peace with your thoughts and your place within the universe.
All of these things are fully obtainable for anyone, no matter how chaotic your life may seem currently.
To help guide you on your way, here are a few morning and evening rituals and routines that will help to transform your life. Let’s dig in!
Morning Rituals + Routines
1) Journal Your Thoughts
A great way to kick off the first hour of the day is to journal your thoughts and reflect on the blessings in your life.
It’s a wonderful way to clear your head and start your day on a positive note. It also helps to train your mind to actively seek out those moments, feelings, people or experiences that you’re grateful for.
This will also help you gain more clarity on your goals and your intentions for the day. It not only puts your goals out there front and center, but keeps you motivated and focused on the direction you’re heading.
It’s also a great way for you to look back and review those goals on a daily basis.
2) Sit in Silence
Before you begin your day, take time to simply sit in silence for a short while, even just 5 minutes can make a huge difference.
Before your phone starts beeping and other people start clamoring for your attention, give yourself a moment to take in the quiet of the world.
How often do you actually allow yourself to do this? If you’re like the majority of people, it’s probably not very often. It’s so easy to get caught up in the wave of outside obligations and expectations.
As you sit in silence, take note of your breathing. This can be a form of meditation within itself just focusing solely on taking one breath in, letting one breath out.
Waking up before the world can be one of the best parts of your day because you can clear your head and simple just be.
3) Visualize Your Future
When you start each day by visualizing what you want your future to look like, you automatically raise your frequency and set yourself up for success.
Take 5-10 minutes each morning to picture something that you’re working towards. This can be a new job, a brand new jeep, a house on the beach or that trip to Thailand you’ve always wanted to take.
Pick one thing and envision yourself living that moment.
Tap into your creativity. How do you feel making this dream a reality? What emotions are you going through? What are you wearing? Where do you live at the time? What does your life look like in that exact moment? Imagine yourself there and give visibility to your dreams through this process.
A quick tip: Let go of the cursed “hows.”
During your visualization, you don’t need to know how your dream is going to happen, simply that it does. This is a fun way to get to know yourself better. Plus, it gets you pumped and ready for the day ahead.
4) Water Yourself
Every good thing needs water to grow, including us!
This may be one of the most obvious suggestions but it’s also one that many people don’t follow.
One of the first things you want to do when you wake up is drink some water to rehydrate your body. Not only does this jump start your metabolism but it also increases your overall alertness during the day.
Make it your best effort to grab a glass of water each morning to give your mind and body the kickstart they need for a successful day.
Evening Rituals + Routines
1) Read one chapter of a good book
After a long day, one of the best things you can do is curl up with a good book before bed.
This not only relaxes your mind, but reading has also been known to reduce stress and anxiety levels and combat insomnia as well.
It helps distract your mind from the daily chaos of life and redirects your focus to what is written on the page of the book.
In other words, reading creates a brief escape from the world around us and there’s no better time than right before you drift off to dream.
Reading is also a great way to broaden your perspective and open your mind to new possibilities – this is why it’s no surprise that it can give your creativity a boost.
Adding this habit to your nightly ritual can make a huge impact on how you sleep as well as how you feel the next day.
2) Morning Prep
One way to makes sure the next morning isn’t super chaotic is to prep for it the night before.
Depending on what your mornings usually look like, your night prep might be something as simple as getting your clothing laid out for work or deciding on 3 tasks you want to focus on for the next day.
Think about what will help your mornings run more smoothly and do that. If you are constantly running late because you have to make the kids lunches, start making them up the night before to give you a head start to the day.
Developing a routine each evening where you feel prepped and ready for the next day will not only reduce stress but keep life from becoming too crazy the minute you wake up.
3) Limit Electronics Usage
Despite how wonderful technology can be, it can also greatly affect our ability to get a restful night’s sleep - or even fall asleep for that matter.
From your smartphone to your TV to video gaming devices, you want to make every effort to reduce how much you use these electronics as the sun goes down.
Instead of watching that last episode on Netflix or scrolling mindlessly through Facebook 30 minutes before bed, try journaling or find a good book to help you unwind.
It’s especially important to keep your bedroom free from digital distractions.
Set boundaries where you recognize that your bedroom is a place of relaxation, not an in-home movie theatre or social media station.
By establishing this nighttime ritual, it’s much more likely that you'll sleep well and wake up feeling more refreshed.
4) Guided Meditation
Right before bed is a great time to try your hand at meditation so you can calm your mind and prepare for a good night’s sleep.
If you’re new to meditation or have trouble shutting off your thoughts at night, it might be overwhelming to even know where to start.
This is where guided meditation comes in. This type of meditation can help you focus and get out of your own head while keeping those distracting thoughts at bay.
There are several apps to help you get started including Insight Timer and Headspace.
You don’t have to commit to an hour long meditation - who has time for that anyway?
There are a ton of short and quick meditations to start with so just pick one and roll with it.
Meditation takes practice (even the guided kind) so don’t give up if your mind should start to wander the first 12 times you try it.
Be consistent and in just 5-10 minutes a day you can start to transform your life with little to no effort.
I'm such a huge fan of the idea the idea of the compound effect and that little by little, a little can become a lot.
Which is why I'll always encourage you to start with one thing consistently and then grow from there.
Question to Consider: What ONE morning or evening routine do you want to start to incorporate in your life? Can you commit to this for 30 days to create a habit and then build from there?
Action Step: Take out your calendar and look at when you might want to start your new morning or evening routine.
It doesn't have to be tomorrow or the first of the month!
Give yourself some time and space to prepare to start your new ritual or routine.
Set an alert on your calendar to remind you a few days before you're ready to start and also on the day of.
Need some help getting started creating your morning and evening routines?
Click the image below to grab your Creating Calm Journal!
Inside there's a morning and evening rituals and routines worksheet to guide you on your way!