Jumping into spring, it’s the perfect time to gather the wisdom within us and around us to make us stronger and healthier. We let go of old feelings and negative self-talk and open ourselves up to connecting more deeply to what nourishes us from the inside out. We realize that how we start our mornings sets the tone for the rest of our day. By carrying out daily self-care rituals when we wake up, we are renewed, refreshed and receptive to the world around us. We see things in a different light than if we were anxious, stressed or fatigued.
One of the first things we can do upon waking after a blissful night of rest—before checking our phones or emails- is to come to a state of stillness within ourselves. We take in a few deep cleansing breaths and find a comfortable position to close our eyes and reflect on something we are grateful for. The corners of our lips gently lift to a smile and we know in that moment all is right in the world.
From a scientific standpoint, meditation and deep breathing actually help tone our vagus nerve, which is the longest and most complex of our cranial nerves. The vagus nerve runs from our brain stem down through our throat, heart, lungs, liver, spleen, pancreas and intestines. It is part of our parasympathetic nervous system, which helps us feel calm, safe, connected and loved. This nerve is associated with our emotions, digestion, slowing our heart rate and even reducing inflammation within our body. Meditation is key to helping your body from the inside out.
Each morning when we wake up, we have a choice as to how we want to start our day. We can use this first hour to meditate, write, draw, and dance or whatever comes to our minds in that moment. I call this the hour of higher creativity and connection where we draw upon our senses and make ourselves feel nurtured and loved. During this time we can become clear in our intentions, both for the day and for the future, and we become aware and conscious of exactly how we will accomplish what we want. Intention-setting is the fuel that feeds the fire of your life’s purpose. We become the driver of our own lives rather than sitting in the backseat waiting for someone to tell us where to go. By writing down our intentions we are able to visualize what we truly want for ourselves and are able to create an inner-GPS toward realizing them. We can refer to our list of intentions to make sure we are still aiming to achieve these goals. Some of my favorite intentions are to write in my gratitude journal every single day, listen more intently and to eat more mindfully. Just like life itself, our intentions evolve over time and it’s always a great idea to allow new intentions to develop for the day or year.
Cannabis is a beautiful friend that we can use to help us go even deeper within ourselves during our morning meditation and intention-setting. She opens us up to seeing parts of ourselves that we might not normally tap into when our brains are fogged with stress and everything we have to do in the day ahead. We need to reshape our ‘wake-and-bake’ sessions into mornings of empowerment with our favorite plant at hand. Tolerance and needs vary from person to person, but thankfully there are many different strains and ways we can use cannabis to help start our day in the best possible head-space. Remember that a little can go a long way, especially for those that wake up already feeling anxious about the day ahead.
Here is a list of the best strains to help boost your productivity, energy and creativity:
1. Jack Herer (sativa dominant)
2. Blue Dream (sativa dominant hybrid)
3. Durban Poison (pure sativa)
4. ACDC (sativa dominant, high CBD)
5. Sour Diesel (sativa dominant)
How we choose to nourish our bodies first thing in the morning also plays a huge role on our mood throughout the day. I always recommend starting your day with real food, nothing processed or laden with sugar, which throws your blood sugar out of whack and causes an afternoon energy crash. I suggest a meal that’s light on the digestive system and free of grains, dairy and sugar, so you feel energized after eating rather than full and tired. The recipes I’ve included are loaded with protein, fiber, vitamins and adaptogens, all with a light infusion of cannabis to help you feel at ease throughout the workday. Keep in mind that each person’s tolerance is completely different and you might not need as much as another person. Start small and work your way up until you feel your very best.