I’ve been having a bit of a hard time since fall has fallen upon us and we had to close our pool…
Here is why I am soooo grateful to have a pool in our backyard:
For about a month or even longer, at the end of the summer I did my morning swims around 6am every morning. This wasn’t just fun or a workout or a routine or even something I had to drag myself out of bed to do!
These morning skinny dips were pure freedom! As soon as I would put my head under water, the world around me would disappear and left would be pure joy, happiness, laughter (inside my head) and the big feeling of being free!
These swims turned into my morning mediation. You know how you are aware of your breaths when you meditate. Is there a better way to be conscious about breathing than when you are in the water, mostly under the water?!
In my mind I could arrange and remember everything that would be going on this coming day…just to know what’s on the agenda and thinking of it as a happy day, helps the flow of my day in an enormous way 🙂
Time would slow down and I would just be me, and sometimes feel like ‘little Annika’, my inner-child would show and just purely, unconsciously and innocently enjoy the moment…especially on those rainy mornings! Or the super cold ones, where you could see your breath in the air at just a couple of degrees above freezing. After a couple of laps the pool would turn into a steaming whole in the middle of our yard, releasing all the warmth that was stored inside overnight 🙂
But most important for me was the feeling of being free and I tried to store this feeling inside my every cell for that day. And whenever there would be a moment of hustle or time pressure or craziness of any kind going on that day, I would go back in my mind to THAT feeling and my mind would slow down and get more aware of the things that had to be done to bring me and usually my boys back into ‘our middle’.
When I was a child I was adventurous. I climbed roof tops, bridges and playground structures with no fear at all. Friends would stand there and tell me that I was crazy… I rode me inline skates down crazy steep hills, not knowing what was going to welcome me at the bottom, behind the bend…if there was dirt in the road or a car coming around the curve. I think what I most liked about this was the air in my lungs going down quickly and just feeling free (and kind of unstoppable)!
I just had this trust in myself or in something bigger that I would be okay, nothing bad ever happened to me! I have never broken any bones, nor have I been at the hospital for more than a couple of hours of my life. And that only once to have my adenoids removed and to be born into this beautiful world (not to forget).
But this feeling of adventure is trying to find its way back into my life. I don’t need to do any life threatening things anymore, but feeling free and having fresh air inside my lungs are things that are essential for my wellbeing, I feel like.
So, how do I manage to do this without my morning swims? I tell you how, but am totally open for more and better ideas, because I am not yet totally satisfied with my new routine…
What I found out is, that I have to get up at 5:45am in the morning to be able to have breakfast started and have my son’s lunchbox ready before I wake him up at 7am. Just sitting and meditating doesn’t work for me. I need to move to wake up my mind and body in the mornings, so I started doing some of my favorite yoga stretches.
This usually takes about 15-20 minutes followed by a nice warm shower. I love it when my body gets hot after a couple of sun salutations. It’s a bit like warming up swimming in the cold water. Doing the stretches without clothes makes it feel more free than when I am dressed, for sure 🙂
I have to say that this is not at all as joyful as jumping into the water, but it’s something that wakes me up.
This weekend, that I spent by myself as my husband took our boys out of town, I tried adding music to my routine which was very nice. I will definitely continue to do that. Another thing that I tried out yesterday morning before teaching my first sewing workshop ever, which was also my first teaching in 7 years…I did the tree pose in front of the bathroom mirror and pretty much told myself positive affirmations straight to my face, like “you got this”, “you know how to teach”, “it’s going to be wonderful”, “you will be happy”, “it’s going to be fun”, “it’s going to be joyful for everyone”,…
This first seemed a bit funny, but then it felt really good and empowering… I was totally motivated after this and started dancing to my music… Then I showered and danced a bit more in the shower and sang as loud as I could…things that are probably not really possible on a normal morning at 6am…but maybe I can include something like this into my daily morning routine… It for sure was a lot of fun! I’d call it free-dance-shower-singing…for special days…
Also, yesterday I ordered an Intensati dvd. Online it says the following about this special workout that was founded by Patricia Moreno in New York City:
A TRANSFORMATIONAL WORKOUT THAT WILL MOTIVATE YOU TO LIVE A LIFE YOU LOVE IN A BODY YOU LOVE NOW
Train your body, mind and spirit with this powerfully invigorating practice. IntenSati combines empowering affirmations with interval training, martial arts, dance and yoga. You will leave class feeling stronger, uplifted and inspired.
Doesn’t this sound incredible? I’ll give it a try and will let you know what I think of it!
And maybe this will be part of my morning routine soon… A very nice side effect of my morning workout right now is that I feel like my body is getting stronger and more in shape from just these couple of stretches…I enjoy this a lot, but of course would like to add some more feeling of freedom to my routine…
I am curious what you do for a morning routine that can carry you through the day!
I am always thankful for new ideas…and as you see I am still on the path of finding my perfect match 🙂
Have a great Sunday evening and good start into the new week!
Much love, aNNika