Since the very beginning, we humans have adjusted our rhythms to that of the world around us - we rise with the sun, don't go swimming during a high tide, sleep when the moon is shining and hunt in broad daylight.
This highly sophisticated synergy between the elements and ourselves has undergone a massive transformation through the ages and is now a much more complex mechanism than before.
We don't have to wait for the break of dawn to go about our work anymore. We now work for establishments located thousands of miles away and talk to colleagues that are having lunch while we take a bite of our dinner. The working men and women of the 21st century need to work a tad bit harder than their ancestors to balance their lives as it's not just about survival anymore but about thriving.
Though distractions come by a dime a dozen, it takes a dedicated approach to develop habits that will enrich and grow you. Mental and physical well being are closely linked to our habits and our routines.
A morning routine is sacrosanct to most people - a cup of tea, reading the newspaper, doing a Surya Namaskar, meditating, et al. It almost always sets the tone for the rest of the day and hence it is all the more important to pay attention to how we treat this sacred time that could propel us forward.
We got curious to know how young working people from various walks of life take on their mornings and so we spoke with three accomplished individuals. Read on to find out what they do First thing in the morning!
Preethika Chawla, Actor.
Q. So tell us about your morning rituals that you have/had, specifically what is it that you do first thing in the morning
A. The first thing I do (my eyes semi closed) is what I like to call a morning barf! I always have a pen and paper at my bedside and as soon as I open my eyes, I just write anything that my subconscious wants to spill on paper.
All the nights accumulated thoughts are out of my system and I'm good to go!
I then drink a fair amount of water and then spend about 30 mins in the bathroom. This is my me time before I have to meet family or get on with work.
Q. We like your ritual! Any other quirky habit that you incorporate into your ritual that you'd like to share?
A. Before I go to bed, I usually write a time table for the following day, Incorporating all the tasks I have for the next day. So post loo time, I look at that time table and then I make my boyfriend and myself a lavish breakfast. Everyday.
Again, this cooking time is also me time where I'm focussing on prepping our funnest meal of the day.
I then chant/ meditate for about 5 mins and get on with my day.
Preethika is theatre actor and has also worked in several TV shows and movies such as Made in Heaven & Band Baaja Baaraat. You can follow her here.
Kanthi Dutt, Entrepreneur.
Q. How do you begin your morning?
A. I wake up between 6:30 to 7am and finish my morning run around the KBR for 40 mins. Following which I finish my shower & sit for a 16 minutes Isha Kriya meditation. I have a full meal (replacement for breakfast & lunch) by 9:30 am and step out for work.
Q. How did you figure this routine out? Any experiences that helped you get to where you are?
A. I have always been an early riser. Thanks to Shilpa Reddy who introduced me to Isha Kriya and there after, I could gain better control over myself & it also helps with inner growth. My teenage had been a roller coaster ride, since I started working at 13. However, I realised during my late teens that only basic fitness activities can help me be at peace. Since then, I ensure that I strictly follow my morning routine.
Q. Any suggestions to the audience about having a morning routine
A. Early to bed and early to rise is the best medicine for an active mind. As soon as you wake up, directly jump out of the bed and fresh up. Do not spend time on mobile devices until you finish your morning rituals. To start a fresh day with a guided medication, could help you a lot on the long run.
Kanthi is an entrepreneur whose recent venture Sustain Kart has been garnering praise for being India's first sustainable online market. You can follow him here
Chinmaya Sharma, Actor & Content Developer.
Q. Are you a morning person and what do you think is the right time to start your day?
A. I had a long period of indiscipline that didn't allow me to be consistent with my patterns. However, it all changed a couple of years ago when I had to undergo an Achilles's tendon surgery. During the recovery period I spent a better part of the year off the sports fields (I regularly play basketball, cricket, and football) did put on quite a lot weight. When I was finally ready to get back into the game, I was asked to lose 17 kilos of weight which was quite a lot to be honest.
I found it difficult initially, but with constant effort I was able to achieve my goals and it was through this process that I ended up being a morning person. I now regularly wake up around 9 AM and start my day with a cup of coffee. I accidentally ended up having a glass of cold brew coffee that my sister in law ,Swetha, made for herself and have been hooked since, in fact it is something that I look forward to every morning.
Every member of my household wakes up at different hours, some are morning people and some aren't. I believe you should figure out which time works for your body, mind and life better. Once you do find that, you need to consistently begin your day at that point, and that according to me is better than forcing yourself to be up at times that don't work for you.
Q. So what is your morning routine?
A. I have my coffee while going through my calendar and to do list for the day. I also try spending this time with my parents and sister in law who are both up at this time. (My wife begins her day at noon so I don't disturb her at this time) I also take a call with my manager to review things. I don't have a breakfast as I've been intermittently fasting, so I have my first meal between 1-2 pm in the noon.
Q. What is your advice for people that are struggling to have a morning routine in place?
A. The reason that most people give for not being able to take action on their goals is "I don't have the time," and that I believe is the biggest excuse. We make time to eat, to sleep, to shit, to entertain ourselves if need be. So we do have the time to do what is needed to achieve our goals, it just needs discipline and consistency in action. Stop feeding yourself excuses and take action. Having a morning routine in place does work wonders.
Chinmaya is an Actor, Content Creator and avid Scuba Diver. To know more about his dives follow him on Instagram here