Meditation has a variety of benefits, and we have more than enough reasons to meditate. Including mindfulness meditation into your morning routine is one of the best things you can do for your well-being. In this post, we’ll discuss six meditation techniques you can do as soon as you wake up.
You can pick one or more of these practices and include them in your morning routine. The goal is to replace the usual phone-checking with something more positive and fulfilling.
- 5 Benefits of meditating after waking up
- 1. Gratitude Journal
- 2. Negative visualization
- 3. Walking meditation
- 4. Positive visualization
- 5. Deep breathing
- 6. Letting go of control
- Final thoughts
5 Benefits of meditating after waking up
Meditation makes you happier, helps with illnesses like depression, and improves our well-being. So before we look at the different morning meditations and how to meditate after waking up, let’s discuss some benefits of meditating in the morning.
1. It sets the tone for the rest of the day
Most of us get up in the morning, turn off the alarm, and check our phones. We may start checking emails for work or open social media from the notifications that have stacked up during the night. Moments after waking up, our minds get busy and are on the way to overwhelm.
If only we put meditation first, we would see a tremendous change in our mood throughout the day. Doing small meditations first thing in the morning helps us start our day on the right foot. It’ll give us a sense of serenity and control that will last for the rest of our day.
2. It gives you more energy
Research shows that meditation releases endorphins in our body. These are the chemical messengers responsible for the sense of happiness that we sometimes experience. These endorphins are not only good for our emotional well-being, but they also boost our energy.
Meditation also triggers a deep state of relaxation during the session. So even if we wake up in the morning feeling tired, after meditating for a few minutes, we’ll be more energetic without having to rely on coffee. It’ll energize the body for the rest of the day, making us more awake and alert naturally.
Also, since we’ll be drinking less caffeine throughout the day, we won’t experience any energy slumps in the noon.
3. It increases your sense of well-being
If we make it a habit to meditate as soon as we wake up, we’ll start our day on the right foot. We’ll still have work to do and people to deal with, but meditation will change the way we feel about it. We’ll be better prepared to face the challenges of the day with composure and grace. A sense of contentment and peace will slowly make its way into our daily life.
In this article, we’ll be talking about several ways of meditating in the morning. These meditations will fill us with gratitude, serenity, and compassion. They contribute to your emotional and psychological well-being.
4. It increases your focus and your productivity
A few minutes of silent reflection in the morning gives us clarity and focus to tackle the day. We step into each day with clear priorities, knowing what we want out of the next hours. Morning meditation gives us direction and clarity of thought, so we’re able to maximize our productivity.
Regular meditation also helps us develop concentration and mindfulness. We’re able to notice interruptions without losing focus on the task at hand. It makes our work style highly productive.
5. It helps you see the big picture
Meditation gives the mind a break from the restless striving. When we meditate, the mind is not troubled by the petty things that may annoy us in our day-to-day lives. We become calmer and can think more objectively about matters at hand.
A plethora of wisdom and clarity surrounds each of us. When we start our day with meditation, we allow ourselves to step back and see things as they are. We’re able to detach from the chaos of our lives and make it an object of contemplation. This results in a balanced perspective, which is indispensable for living a meaningful and fulfilling life.
Related article: How Many Times a Day Should You Meditate?
1. Gratitude Journal
If you’ve been reading about meditation, you must have heard a lot about gratitude. Being grateful helps you become happier and healthier. Usually, though, we focus on things we worry about rather than the ones that make us happy.
It’s only natural and doesn’t make us pessimistic. But we can program our subconscious mind to have a happier outlook on life by practicing gratitude every day in the morning.
It is not joy that makes us grateful; it is gratitude that makes us joyful.David Steindl-Rast
How to do it
As soon as you wake up, think of three to five things that you’re grateful for. Vividly imagine what happened and how it contributed to your happiness. Feel the gratitude in your heart and thank the universe for those things.
At first, you may have difficulties finding positive incidents that happened in the last 24 hours. But over time, your brain will get in the habit of noticing and being grateful for joyful moments.
It’s a small mental exercise, but it’ll change your attitude toward life. You can also write those three to five things in a gratitude diary. Seeing how wonderful things happen to you daily will uplift your mood when you’re feeling down on a particular day.
2. Negative visualization
We talked about having a positive outlook by looking for things to be grateful for. But imagining how things could go wrong also contributes to our emotional well-being. It might seem counterintuitive, but negative visualization works wonders.
It is the cornerstone meditation of the Stoic philosophy. When we think about the misfortunes that could befall us or that the things or people around us will vanish one day, we learn to appreciate what we have.
The following quote from Marcus Aurelius, a Roman Emperor and Stoic Philosopher, sums up negative visualization:
Do not indulge in dreams of having what you have not, but reckon up the chief of the blessings you do possess, and then thankfully remember how you would crave for them if they were not yours.Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
How to do it
Although you can practice it mentally, I suggest you do some preparation beforehand to reap the full benefits of this Stoic meditation. Here’s how it goes:
Write a couple of misfortunes in a notebook. It could be getting your arms or legs chopped off, the death of your family members, or something simple like losing your phone or computer. Try to write what would happen if these horrible events manifested in actual life. Be as detailed as possible, writing about every emotion you would feel.
Now, once you get up in the morning, sit silently for two minutes in a quiet room, focusing on your breath. Take your notebook and go through it. Use all your senses to experience what you would go through if those things happened to you. Do it for five to ten minutes.
You’ll instantly feel the change at the end of this meditation. You’ll be more grateful for the things you already have and feel like hugging those around you as they won’t be there forever. If done correctly, you’ll want to give thanks for all the small stuff you usually look over.
If you would like to know more about negative visualization and how it benefits you, this video is an excellent place to start:
3. Walking meditation
Walking meditation has been around for a long time. It’s more than just strolling around. It’s about being mindful of our body and physical sensations as we move forward. In walking meditation, our eyes are open, and the mind and body are present here and now.
It’s blissful to walk mindfully in the early morning when the sun is about to rise. If you have birds chirping around, deepening your tranquility, it makes everything even more heavenly.
How to do it
Find an area where you can walk 10-15 steps back and forth. A quiet, secluded location is preferred so that others won’t disturb you. Walking meditation involves consciously doing things that you normally do automatically. When you’re walking, observe:
- The lifting of your right foot;
- Its movement forward;
- Placing the foot on the ground, heel first;
- The shifting of your body’s weight as you move forward and lift your left heel, the toes of your right foot touch the ground at the same time;
- Lifting of your left foot and so on…
In this way, take 10-15 steps. Your pace will be slower than normal walking, and that’s okay. Make sure it isn’t exaggerated and feels natural. Also, don’t wave your hands freely. Clasp them in front or back of you. Take each step mindfully and try to notice everything: your breath, steps, the wind blowing, and your movement forward.
Walking meditation has various health benefits, such as improved digestion and reduced anxiety. It also makes us peaceful and increases our focus.
If you want more detailed instructions, here’s a YouTube video by Venerable Yuttadhammo Bhikku, a Canadian monk and Buddhist teacher:
4. Positive visualization
We’ve seen how negative visualization can fill us with gratitude and guard the subconscious against possible disasters. Now, let’s look at the power of positive visualization.
Positive visualization helps us get rid of stress by lowering the cortisol levels in our body, brings meaning to the journey of our life, and sparks inspiration. Apart from that, it also optimizes our performance and opens the mind to all possibilities.
It’s a way of speaking to the universe directly. You’ll see many people recommending it for success and positivity.
How to do it
Sit comfortably on your bed and close your eyes. Take a few deep breaths to settle down. Remember, the more vividly you visualize, the more benefits you’ll reap.
With positive visualization, guided meditations are very useful. They’re crafted to give you a refreshing experience. Here’s an excellent guided meditation that you can do in the morning:
5. Deep breathing
Almost all of us take shallow breaths. But did you know that deep breathing is one of the easiest and natural ways to combat issues like anxiety and stress? The extra oxygen does wonders for the body and mind.
By taking deep breaths, our heart rate slows down and more oxygen enters our bloodstream, which tells the brain to relax. It also detoxifies our body and increases immunity.
Apart from the physical benefits, breathing deeply for a few minutes also releases endorphins, making us feel better. Only a couple of deep breaths will make you calmer and more relaxed. It’s an excellent way to kick-start the day with tranquility.
How to do it
You can do it while lying down, sitting on a chair, or sitting cross-legged. Close your eyes and relax. After a few moments, gently breathe into your diaphragm. Notice your stomach rising. Now, exhale at the same pace.
You can add visualization to this technique to boost its effects. With every inhalation, visualize and feel that you’re breathing in the universe’s positivity. With every exhalation, breathe out all the stress, anxiety, and regret.
If you would like guided instructions for this meditation, here’s an excellent resource:
6. Letting go of control
Here’s another meditation inspired by Stoicism. Usually, we try to control our lives as much as possible. We want to predict every outcome and have it our way. If anything goes awry, it’s a source of grief. Although it’s natural to want life to go as we want, usually it doesn’t happen.
If we practice letting go of the need to control, we’ll be able to maintain our composure when things don’t unfold according to our plans. It’s easier said than done, but with regular practice, we can steel ourselves in the face of adversity.
How to do it
In this meditation, you’ll reflect on these words of Epictetus, a Stoic philosopher:
Some things are within our power, while others are not. Within our power are opinion, motivation, desire, aversion, and, in a word, whatever is of our own doing; not within our power are our body, our property, reputation, office, and, in a word, whatever is not of our own doing.Epictetus, Enchiridion
Knowing that we can’t control the outcome of any situation can be scary at first, but there’s comfort once we accept it. it’s helpful to spend a few minutes contemplating how you don’t know if your business will take off or if you’ll even be alive to witness your son’s wedding. We can always increase the likelihood of things going our way, but we can never be certain.
Also, realize that you’re not alone. No one can predict if their efforts will be successful or not. We’re all in the same boat.
It’s funny. We all have dreams. We plan our lives like we’re the captains of our fate. But we’re passengers. We go where fate takes us.Passengers (Movie)
Sounds depressing? Well, sometimes it’s good to disappoint yourself gently before life does it harshly.
Related article: Meditating on the Floor vs. on a Chair — Which Is Better?
Meditating right after waking up helps us start our day with a sense of peace and positivity. Each of the mediations listed here only takes a few minutes but has a massive impact on the rest of our day. When practiced daily, these meditations can transform our lives.
I hope you found this article useful. If you have questions or want to start a discussion, leave a comment below and I’ll be sure to respond.
Good luck and happy meditating! 😊