“Your commute to work is an important time of day. It’s easy to see these minutes or hours as a waste of time, however they are just as valuable as the rest of your day. Make use of them to start your day of work with a mindful morning routine. Practicing positive thoughts and mindfulness is an excellent start to a productive and peaceful day. Mindfulness has been proven to reduce stress and improve your mental and physical health. Check out our tips on how to have a more mindful commute.
Check in with Yourself
A huge part of a mindful morning is being reflective and introspective. Being present in the moment starts with asking yourself how you are. This can be simply checking how your state of mind is, acknowledging the negative thoughts as well as the positive ones. Mindfulness is never about ignoring negative thoughts, but rather letting them go just as quickly as they enter your head. A quick check in during your morning routine or your commute to work can help to ground yourself and bring you focus for the day ahead.
For large parts of our commute to work, we find ourselves sitting waiting for the journey to end. Instead of dreading this time, you can utilise the minutes to do something positive. Your mindful morning can begin before you leave the house, with jotting down things that you are thankful for or positive things in your life. This doesn’t have to be written down as long as you are identifying a handful of things each day. Whether work-related or in your personal life, positive aspects will start your day off on the right foot. You’ll feel a spring in your step and a brighter perspective in no time.
Stress while we’re on our journey to work can be exacerbated by delays, queues, and more things that happen unexpectedly. These things can interrupt our flow of routine and cause panicky feelings and an overload of thoughts. In these moments, it’s important to acknowledge that these things are out of your control. You should take a moment to remember this and to instead focus on what you can control. This will restore your sense of control over your day and give your brain something more tangible to deal with rather than ‘what ifs’ and anxious thoughts.
Furthermore, waiting times should not always be thought of as a bad thing. While they can be frustrating, it provides a moment in time for you to be still where you are. With nothing to do except wait until the next bus, train, or for traffic to move, you have ample time to pause and take your surroundings in. Focus on little things, one at a time, to keep you grounded and in the moment as you travel to work.
Even sitting down, you can incorporate exercise into your journey for your mindful morning routine. Rolling your shoulders, tilting your head, and stretching out your arms are all great ways to wake up your muscles without annoying fellow commuters. Having a set few exercises can be a great way to focus on you and your body. This can also help to remind you about your posture – we’re all guilty of slouching, particularly in the mornings. Having small routines to sit up a little straighter and to have your spine and shoulders in a more neutral position can do wonders for your back throughout the day.
Posture is a hugely important part of our working day. To ensure you’re doing all you can for a healthy and risk free posture, browse our range of ergonomic office chairs and accessories.
Act of Kindness
Small acts of kindness, even internally, as part of your mindful morning routine can be a great way to start the day in a positive way. Look around you on your journey, whether you’re walking, driving, or on public transport. If you’re feeling brave, express a compliment or exchange a smile with another commuter. Holding the door, helping someone vulnerable on or off trains, and other small acts can help you feel good for hours afterwards. If no opportunities arise, even wishing positive things and kind thoughts on to people you see or think about can be a great way to promote positive and kind thinking for the rest of your working day.
Another important part of stress relief is taking time off from work. For more on the importance of taking annual leave, read our blog.
By: Richard Edwards
Published: 23rd November 2021