Iʼm a firm believer in baby steps. A little more greens here, 5 minutes earlier on the alarm there, stairs instead of escalators everywhere. I believe this holds true for how we start our day as well. Sure, you can go all out with a 2 hour morning routine. And if you have the time and space – then by all means go for it. But I know that sometimes, even with the time and space, simpler is usually better.
Which is why I scaled down my morning routine and aimed to complete 4 or 5 sun salutations before I meditate each morning. The benefits have been undeniable.
1. I am committing to something and following through:
I typically set huge goals for myself because I know it will be hard and then when it is, I have an excuse as to why I haven’t been doing it already, along with an excuse to stop. Itʼs my clever way of self sabotaging change so I can justify staying in my comfort zone. By committing to something small (but still beneficial) I have no excuse not to stick to my With a goal this small, all typical excuses for resistance go out the window, and I am left with the real reason I donʼt want to get up and do it. That reason is different for everyone, but you wonʼt know until you leave yourself no choice but to stare it in the face and deal with it.
Once you have done that, you can conquer it. I donʼt need to explain to you the rewards of following through on something we commit to. We all know it kicks ass.
2. I am getting my blood flowing:
4 or 5 sun salutations gets everything pumping. I can do them as slowly or quickly as I want to, but the end result is still the same: everything is moving. When I sit down to meditate and quiet my mind, my body is already on deck. Itʼs prepped, itʼs awake, itʼs game time. I can feel the buzz through every limb and that awareness helps carry me through a mindful 10 minutes of stillness.
3. I am getting in touch with my breath:
Sun salutations are not fancy, flashy poses that take years to nail down so we can put them on our Instagram. They are simple sequences that anyone can do, and they are heavily reliant on regulating the breath. Turning everything off and moving my body to the rhythm of my breath is one of the most therapeutic activities I have ever experienced.
4. I am guaranteeing myself that I fit yoga into my day at least once:
The dogs get sick, the boyfriend decides he wants to take me to the beach, the deadline is pushed up, I get distracted or lazy…all of these are daily events that can derail my plans to get my yoga on later that day. By completing a small sequence of sun salutations, I am ensuring that I made yoga a priority, even if only for 5 minutes. Donʼt get it twisted – a little bit goes a long way.
5. I am working every muscle in my body:
Sun salutations are simple, but they arenʼt resting poses I am toning my arms, back, shoulders, and core. I am stretching my hamstrings, calves, and torso. I am regulating my breathing, I am strengthening and stretching simultaneously. Itʼs the whole shebang. Great for mind AND body. Win-win.
So there you have it. Simple. Effective. Day changing. But it does take some commitment. If you donʼt have an extra 5 minutes already laying around, I highly suggest finding it. I know my day depends on it.
Love and light, Yuri
Want to learn how to do yoga poses that are most commonly done wrong? Check out our Yoga Pose Spotlight Series where seasoned yoga teachers break down the poses in detail.