“Changing the destructive things you say to yourself when you experience the setbacks that life deals all of us is the central skill of optimism.”
– Martin E.P. Seligman in Learned Optimism: How to Change Your Mind and Your Life
Move – At Any Time Of Day
You’ve probably been told that exercising at night will keep you awake. Well, let’s put that myth to bed (pardon the pun).
Research from 2018 found that not only did evening exercise not affect sleep, it seemed to help people fall asleep faster and spend more time in deep sleep.
Yes, night workouts are good! Caveat: just avoid vigorous activity for at least an hour before bed. That’s enough time to wind down and get your deep sleep on.
Are you a night mover? When do find time to exercise?
Being an expert has a downside: we can become closed off to new ideas and ways of doing things.
Enter shoshin, a Japanese concept that means “beginner’s mind”.
The mind of a beginner is open, curious, filled with wonder. The beginner welcomes feedback from others and sees mistakes as part of the learning process.
Thus, embracing shoshin is embracing the idea that, really, we know nothing. Doing so allows us to see the world with fresh eyes.
As Buddhist monk Shunryū Suzuki puts it: “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities. But in the expert’s there are few.”
Larissa Thomson, Co-founder of ONDA Beauty
Mother and businesswoman Larissa Thomson says she’s “consistent in her inconsistency” and mixes up her mornings to do whatever makes her feel best that day. That usually means something like:
- Practices Vedic meditation in bed for 10-20 minutes
- Asks Alexa to play some classical music (Bach’s Goldberg Variations are a favorite) and burns incense
- Replies to emails and posts on social media
- Heads off to an exercise class that combines cardio, strength and stretching
- Makes a smoothie (from a frozen banana, frozen wild blueberries, spinach, raw coconut water, a tablespoon of raw almond butter, and two dates)
Why it works:
- Research on transcendental meditation (based on the Vedic practice) shows it can lower blood pressure, reduce anxiety, improve sleep, and more.
- Rituals – in this case music and incense – give us confidence and security and make us less anxious.
- Combining cardio and strength training gives you the benefits of both. Adding stretching is even better as it helps improve both strength and flexibility.
- Smoothies? Yes please. Aim for a good balance of fruits, greens, fiber and protein.
We love how calming Larissa’s morning ritual of classical music and incense sounds. Those personalized, small morning rituals can bring joy to our day and set us up with a positive mindset.
Do you have a small morning ritual of your own? We’d love for you to share it with us.