BE Savvy

3 Quick Steps for Morning Mental Detox

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(Image: iStock.com/Christopher Futcher) (Image: iStock.com/Christopher Futcher)

Many successful people make sure they start their morning with healthy habits. From not skipping breakfast to taking medication, these leaders get themselves on the right track by kicking off their day in a positive way.

Research shows having positive morning habits can be beneficial to your mood and your overall health. Science also suggests that your brain’s creative juices are very prominent directly after waking—making mornings a pivotal time for brain function.

Check out these three quick steps to stay on the right side of positive for a day of success:

1. Get Transcendental in Your Silence

Famous yoga enthusiasts, including Russell Simmons, reportedly swear by a method of meditation in which one detaches themselves from anxiety by sitting quietly for short spurts of time daily. Oprah Winfrey is also a fan of this, as well as other celebrities including fashionpreneur Kimora Lee Simmons, music icon Stevie Wonder, and TV journalist Robin Roberts.

Yoga stances and tofu are not necessarily prerequisites for this; all that is required is to sit silently with your eyes closed for 20-minute intervals, while repeating a mantra and other yogic practices. Since your brain functions for creativity are at their peak during morning hours, this is a great time to simply relax, breathe, and think positive. Enthusiasts say it’s like taking a mental vacation before the day even starts.

2. Document Your Wins

Research shows that self-affirmation can curb negative outcomes of stress. Self-affirmation interventions “bring about a more expansive view of the self and its resources, weakening the implications of a threat for personal integrity,” according to findings by the Annual Review of Psychology. “Timely affirmations have been shown to improve education, health, and relationship outcomes, with benefits that sometimes persist for months and years.”

It might be a great idea to write down a few things you love about yourself or what you’ll expect from your day. Not into the old-school pen and paper method? There are plenty of apps for jotting down ideas and thoughts and organizing them. Try an app like Askt, which gets beyond the usual random thoughts and presents you with a different question daily to answer about yourself. You can track your answers and compare them year after year to see how you’ve grown emotionally. Another one is Penzu, which uses an algorithm to provide snippets of previous entries as reminders to help determine themes and give you inspiration.

3. Listen to a Great Music Playlist

Researchers say that music can have a direct and instant affect on people, especially in relation to mental health. It’s even been used to alleviate symptoms for conditions such as depression, Alzheimer’s, and autism. Music with a much more slow and soothing vibe—such as classical or any songs that include stringed instruments—are known to be more therapeutic  in encouraging peace and tranquility than other more upbeat genres such as hip-hop or rock. So get your Kem, Bach, or Ben Tankard on in the morning and save the turn-up music for your evening workout.