Before I get into this little morning ritual which is going to drastically change your life (& not take up more than 10 minutes to complete) I need to be super honest with you.
While, yes, doing things consistently is absolutely vital in overcoming stress, depression & anxiety quickly, forgetting every so often is not going to derail the whole process.
In fact, while it's one of the easiest things you can do it also happens to be one of the hardest (& the thing that my clients usually end up having raised eyebrows about every week for the first few weeks of therapy - that is until they get how important it is 😄)
Failure is ALWAYS an option
It's really important that you're OK with messing up.
Recovery is not a straight line.
Recovery is the most wobbly phase of your life.
You will doubt that it will work for you.
You will be convinced that you are so unbelievably broken there is no hope.
Even when you start to feel glimmers of happiness you will self-sabotage to prove that it was a fluke.
This is 100% normal.
A dirty little secret...
The only difference between someone who is mentally ill and mentally healthy is they get back up and try again.
If you are shouting at your computer, phone or tablet, calling me all kinds of names right now, chances are you haven't read all about the 90-second emotional rule in last weeks blog post. I wholeheartedly recommend using the link below to take a little gander there before you carry on because understanding this is going to make sure the 5-step morning ritual will work for you.
>>Read the 90 Second Rule Blog Post<<
If you read it, then you and me, well we're definitely drinking the same juice (even if you've only just taken the first sip & I'm ready for a refill!)
The 5-step morning ritual which will make you happy
1. Get the jump on your naughty little subconscious
When we wake up and start panicking about our never-ending to-do list, or about the horrible boss, our screaming kids... then it's the same as actively choosing to walk the plank into shark-infested waters (& no one wants that!).
When we first wake up our brains are still mostly asleep, they're super chilled out and very suggestible.
If your first thought is a negative or worrying one then you've not only walked the plank you've jumped head first into the water.
In other words, your day will be rubbish.
What you think about for the first 17 seconds of your day dictates how your day turns out.
Spend your first moment lying in bed thinking about something which makes you feel fabulous.
Whether it's having a massage, your haircut or someone making you breakfast.
Close your eyes and just imagine how amazing that would be right now.
This small sneaky little trick will enable you to start your day from a place of enjoyment and not fear.
2. Be honest about how rubbish (or amazing) your life is right now*
We love a 0-10 scale over here at WPS HQ & it is definitely the quickest way to tell if you are having a good or bad morning (even after tricking your subconscious, it's pesky worrying/negative thoughts can poke through and bring you back down again).
* You'll need to do a little bit of this step in advance so that it can be effectively worked into your morning routine (but it will take you 5 mins max)
When you're feeling OK how would you rate your life from 0-10?
0 being along the lines of 'If I even take one step out of bed I know that the world is going to implode and it's all my fault
10 is the same as 'I am living out my fantasy life every day in every way possible
Is it a 4, 6, 8?
Don't judge yourself.
Just know what your 'number' is.
Now list out all the real life things you have right now that make it that number:
It doesn't matter what you value in life, this is your journey.
Now, every morning you rate your day from 0-10 and if you are way off from your usual 'happy' number re-read that list.
Do you still have your house, your partner, your job, your health...
This should help you raise your happiness levels a little, even if you go from a 3 to a 4 it's better than spending the whole day as a 3!
But, we're not done yet - in fact, we're still only just getting started 😄
3. Push past your wonky perception and get to the truth
Now it's time to take note of between 3 and 5 things you are grateful for.
You've probably heard about gratitude?
How it's huge in the 'self-development' world?
The thing is, there is a lot of research (& much of it by real live scientists) which shows, by being thankful for the things we have we are able to shut off the negative and worrying thoughts which fly around our head.
For some reason, people make this a whole lot more difficult than it really is.
You're told that you can't say the same thing two days in a row.
That you have to be grateful for something which is 'important'.
Trust me, some days you're life is going to be so hectic you genuinely are grateful that your hairs naturally curly and you don't always need to brush it... Or is that just me?!
Look, gratitude is an amazingly simple tool but it is unbelievably effective at getting you out of your negative funk and back in the here and now.
Just remember, it's not about pretending the world is wonderful.
It's about being thankful you have toothpaste, you have milk in the fridge for a cup of tea, your dog knows how to unlock the back door and take themselves out first thing in the morning (& if yours can do that please let me know how you managed to achieve it!).
When we start to appreciate exactly what we have right now, we can take the next step in getting the things we want out of life.
4. Set yourself up for success
Did someone say next step?
OK, OK, so it was me 😜
Now is the time to start pushing it up a notch.
What do you want to overcome?
Are you struggling with your weight? Money? Relationships?
(again it really doesn't matter - this is your journey, be honest & only then can things change).
What does it look like when you have overcome this obstacle?
Are you 'a healthy weight' 'slimmer by 7lbs' 'heavier by 4 lbs'?
Do you have '£40 extra a week' '£300 a month' or even '£50,00 extra a year'?
Are you in a 'loving relationship', 'respected by your partner' or 'happy being by yourself'?
Now create a single sentence which sums this up.
This is an affirmation.
This is you declaring to yourself (& the world if you shout it loud enough) that from now on, this is the truth of your situation.
Yes, you are right.
You are still in the same place as you were before this one sentence.
But, you've now told your brain this is how it's going to be and it jolly well needs to buck its ideas up to make it happen.
Research shows that whatever you tell yourself your brain believes and then it goes about trying to make it happen, so at least set it in the right direction.
& my favourite affirmation: I am happy, healthy and wealthy
If you're going to do it you might as well cover all the bases in one fail swoop!
5. Get clear every day on how you want to feel NOT what you want to do
Now that we're feeling good, it's time to address that giant to-do list, fighting child and the thought of our awful day at work.
But, keep in mind when we attach to the negative emotions of what we have to do, we only perpetuate the negative.
Instead, think about why you are doing what you're doing.
Do you have a huge to-do list full of home renovations & once you've done everything your house will feel safe, warm, homely...
Once you children are relaxed, settled and calm do you feel happy?
Do you get to spend the money on your job on days out, trips abroad and a gorgeous wardrobe which fills your life with wonder, excitement and opportunity?
When we get clear on how we want to feel by accomplishing the obstacles in our life we can achieve them from a place of peace not panic.
Write out 3 things (yes just 3) that you need to do today and afterwards write: 'because it will make me feel...'
e.g., I will write my blog post because it makes me feel aligned (aligned is one of my 3 'feeling words' which make me feel happy)
Spend a few moments in those feelings.
Have them wash over you.
It is so easy to read a blog post and tell yourself 'that sounds easy, I guess I'll give it a go' and then never actually do anything.
So, here's my challenge to you.
Try this every day for 7 days in a row (I know you're human & I said it's OK to forget, but let's aim for the stars here).
Print this out (if you need to), stick it right next to your bathroom mirror because I guarantee that is the first place you go when you wake up.
& just see what happens.
See whether you are feeling that little more positive when you wake up.
See if things bother you just that little bit less than they did the week before.
I mean, it's only 10 minutes out of your day - what harm can it do?
Good luck, have fun & don't forget to let me know how you get on :)
Have an amazing day x Katie x
Oh, before I forget next week I'll be taking you one step further and we'll be looking at 'Why a sucky diet, no-exercise routine & being sleep deprived damages you more than you've been led to believe'. You will not want to miss it - knowing how to change these (without doing a lot of work) is a game changer when it comes to your mental health!
Want to make life easy for yourself?
You've probably realised that if I can spend minimal effort and see maximum results then i'm going to jump in with both feet.
Some see it as a failing, I see it as a way to cheat in life and live to the fullest.
If you're like me and like things presented in a super easy to follow, low effort way why not check out our daily planner.
This guides you through all of the 5-steps every morning & includes a few extra little things so that you can effortlessly raise your happiness levels even higher.
We've been using these planners, as part of the therapy process for the past 12 months and it has helped our clients rapidly shift their mental health.
Use the button below to buy your planner so that you can be guided to find peace every morning: