April Habit: Stretching (Asana April!) and a March Habit Recap

+ Yay! It’s the last Friday of the month which means a new monthly habit and a recap of last month’s. These monthly experiments help me build healthy habits, break unhealthy ones or just learn more about myself so I can figure out what’s essential for my best life.

I have been loving this month of re-committing to my Morning Routine (more on that in a bit), so I’d like to continue on this kick through April! One element of a healthy morning routine that I’ve been meaning to add is stretching. Greg tends to be tight and has started doing it first thing. I don’t usually feel tight but... I play soccer. We all know the benefits: increased circulation, flexibility... it's also a great way to start the day body-aware.

Okay, the goal is to spend 5 minutes each morning stretching/posing. I’m planning to follow something like this “5 Yoga Poses to Practice First Thing”. I’ll probably oil-pull first and use that as a trigger to begin stretching. Then I’ll resume the routine with meditating. (I have the dream to get into a restorative yoga practice one day so this is my first baby step ;) Any advice? As always, I’ll let you know how it goes!

Reflections on our March Habit: Morning Routines (Mornings March!):
As I mentioned above, I’m loving the recommitment to my Morning Routine. March has gone well for me and I know it’s related to this practice. Starting the days calm, nourished and productive really makes everything a little better!!

I had more than an 80% completion rate which to me is a great success. The few days I missed were due to:
+ Sabbath: On Saturdays, we try not to look at screens or do anything routine. I maybe did half of the routine on a couple of these days.
+ Illness: I also had an annoying cold for five days and missed my routine for the first two days (sleep!). On day three, I knew getting back into it would make me feel better and it did.
+ Late Nights: After a couple of long evenings out, I started to hit the snooze bar in the morning. Ack, I tried to put an end to that quickly: getting to bed earlier was a start.

Did any of you start to think about your morning routines? Do you have a small practice that helps put a smile on your face?

+ I’ve found that it’s easier to take on multiple small habits like this if they are grouped as a Morning Routine. Mine grew slowly out of multiple monthly habits. Waking up earlier, oil-pulling, meditating, drinking enough water, and practicing gratitude all started as experiments for me. If you have a change you’d like to make in your life, try something similar. Start small and think it through, proceeding as an experiment.

+ I know a few amazing women who know a lot more about stretching and yoga than I do. I’m starting a monthly guest post series and I think I’ll reach out to them for more advice!