My Morning Routine

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Sunrise at Marine Drive, Mumbai

It’s been a while since I updated on the site. I have been busy with assignments. While I could find time to update, I simply didn’t because I thought I have nothing very important to stay. I have been enjoying the simplicity of my life. However, as I came across this blog on morning routines, I thought of writing one myself.

These days I work from home so I don’t have to stress in the morning about getting ready for office. While I could wake up at a leisurely pace, I try not to. I try to stick to a sort of morning routine so that I remain focused. And for the most part it is helping me to accomplish more every day.

While I have always liked the idea of a morning routine, mine has changed a lot as I have moved across cities and continents and life stages. For past few years, my morning routine has involved going to the gym and getting my morning exercise fix. I always feel more energetic in the morning so I try to pack up a lot. However, as I am progressing in my minimalistic journey, I realized that I need to simplify my routine so that I can do things that I will make me more focused through the day.

These days my morning routine consists of either going for yoga in the mornings (I try to do it 2-3 days a week) and a morning walk, which I am still working towards. It has been raining in Mumbai so haven’t been able to make time for it. On days, I am not able to exercise, I try and write, which I don’t succeed with as I end up reading. So I need to work on that. Some days I just wake up and meditate for 30 min, which is really helpful in focusing my mind.

I also like making my own breakfast. Making breakfast is very special to me. I think an energy rich breakfast really leads to a good start for the day. It’s also a way for us to love our bodies.

I start my day either with a savory or a sweet breakfast. My breakfasts are usually simple to make but I try to make them nutritious. While earlier I used to have lots of options for breakfast, these days I am minimizing them so that I am not spending a lot of time making breakfast. I think I should try and conserve that energy and pour into my writing.

Along with my breakfast I also try to have a raw juice and tea or coffee. I am actually a tea person, but occasionally I like to have coffee in my French press. After a few days of coffee though, I feel that I have had too much caffeine in my system. So I am going to put a stop now to it.

But it’s good to simplify my mornings and move at a slower pace rather than feeling stressed. I definitely tend to spend a lot of time reading news – online and offline and too much time on social media. I recently read Leo Babauta’s book Zen to Done and I quite like his advice about finishing our most important items (tasks) of the day before going on social media or reading. It is good to avoid reading and getting more stimulation in your mind before you have had the time to create yours.

So this is my morning routine a way to nourish my body and mind. So what’s your morning routine?

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Minimalism is not giving up, but adding value

Often minimalism is confused with not consuming at all. People think minimalism means living a boring life without enjoyment. It’s viewed as an antithesis of what a consumerist society stands for, that is giving up materialistic pleasures and pursuits. While that may be true for some minimalists, it is not necessarily true for all.

Minimalism to me means giving up possessions that don’t add any value to our lives. Filling our lives and places with mindless consumption attests to a particular habit of acquiring things because we can. It also reflects an emptiness within when we are no longer clear about what we really want to do with our lives so we focus on acquisition of stuff because that is easy. This habit feeds a particular pattern of making money, acquiring stuff and then looking for a place or an occasion to show off our new stuff. Over time, this becomes our life mission.

Minimalism then is a way to become aware of this mindless materialistic pursuit so that we can restructure our life and priorities. If through this process we realize that all we want to do is acquire stuff so be it, but often we discover that there are certain needs and goals in life that are being unmet because of mindless consumption. Clearing out stuff allows us to pause and reflect on what our true desires and callings are. And once we have arrived at a balance between our inner and outer selves, we can reset the button to live a meaningful and mindful life. Except that it is easier said than done.

It is not easy to be a minimalist, to give up your possessions and most importantly, not to acquire new ones to fill the space that has emptied out. Like any new habit that takes time to form, minimalism too takes a while getting used to. It can be a difficult process but it is worth it.

At least that’s what I am discovering. Having too many options in my closet meant it took me an awful lot of time to get ready and I would inevitably end up late everywhere. Second, it meant that I was wearing the same stuff most of the times, as I would get too overwhelmed when going through my closet and often won’t remember the rarely used stuff. It was too much of a load on my memory. Now with fewer options, I find it easier to dress up and am able to actually dress up.

I would love to know, what are your apprehensions about minimalism or struggles with minimalism?