The subconscious mind holds patterns and beliefs based in survival and safety, meaning it looks for things that are out of place or can go wrong.
It is at its most relaxed and open when we go to sleep and when we wake up in the morning. This means that what we absorb or do during this time can set us up for peace and joy or anxiety and worry.
Here are ideas on how to take advantage of this time to optimize your life experience.
Use airplane mode
Earlier this year, I did a five-day ditch-the-cell-in-the-morning challenge. I based this challenge off of an interview I heard with Lewis Howes and Dean Graziosi regarding millionaire success habits. In the interview, Dean said he keeps his phone on airplane mode for the first hour of the day.
The longer you can refrain from going through your phone first thing in the morning, the more time and space you give yourself to decide how your day will go. If your first thoughts are about the things you need to get done and the emails you need to answer, how do you think your brain will respond? My brain responds with worry and anxiety when I do this.
As an alternative, actively choose something different to think about first thing in the morning. Here are some ideas: journaling, gratitude, meditation, exercise, reading/watching/listening to something motivational and inspiring.
The same thing applies before going to bed. To help myself, I bought an alarm clock and moved my phone far across the room so I don’t instinctively look at it before I go to bed, in the middle of the night, and first thing in the morning. I had a difficult time creating this new habit with the phone right next to me so I changed the set-up.
Our subconscious mind continues to work as we sleep and what we give it before dozing off can create a positive outcome. As I’m drifting off to sleep, I think of what I’m thankful for from my day. These things aren’t profound but the fact that I got to spend another day on this earth experiencing life is pretty cool and I choose to honor that during this time.
Life is busy. There are more things to do than any of us will have time for in this lifetime. You and I have the power to choose what we focus on and how we dedicate our time. This is why I choose to get up earlier to start my day the best way possible.
Nearly three years ago, I decided to wake up one hour earlier after reading Hal Elrod’s The Miracle Morning. At first, it was easy because I was so excited about the positive results I was going to experience. It got really hard after my excitement went away. I believe the key to success is showing up and doing the work, consistently, which is why I still get up early for this time today.
My process and the time I dedicate has expanded and shrunk and evolved over the years. The bottom line is – I know what life looks like without creating this time and I choose to keep creating it because it feels better.
Be mindful of what you take in
I invite you to observe your thoughts and feelings when you are taking in information, especially first thing in the morning and before you go to sleep.
If you start your day by reading the news and it causes anger, frustration, worry, and anxiety, how does that impact your day? You have the power to choose what you take in and you can choose differently. Avoiding the news first thing in the morning and right before going to bed is usually a better choice for your mental health.
In brain scans, laughter lights up the entire brain, just like meditation can. Laughter heals and can lift your mood. If you’re unsure how to get out of a funk, try doing something that makes you laugh.
With knowing the subconscious mind is most open first thing in the morning and right before falling asleep, what choices will you continue to make and what will you choose to do differently?