How To Wake Up With A Smile

Are you a morning person?  I definitely am not!

I am jealous of all my friends who bounce out of bed at early morning hours and head off to the gym before 6:00 a.m.

Waking up is a little more difficult for me, which is how I came up with this exercise to get me going in the morning with a smile!

It takes anywhere from a couple of minutes to 20, depending on how much time you want to give yourself.  It is simply a combination of deep breathing, belly massage, and stretching - all from the comfort of your bed, with your eyes closed. 



1.  The moment I wake up, with my eyes closed, laying on my back, legs straight, only the slightest bit awake, I place my hands on my stomach just below my belly button.

And begin to breathe.  In through the nose, expanding my belly, out through the nose, pushing the air down and out through my belly.

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2.  After a couple of deep breaths, I begin to slowly move my hands clockwise around my belly button, using a very light pressure.  As I complete, the first small circle, I expand that circle, slowly going around my stomach, widening the circle each time.

The purpose of this is to begin waking up your body.  As with all massage, the benefits of this light circular motion include:  stimulating lymph flow (the body's natural defense system), pumping oxygen through the body, improving circulation, releasing endorphins (think positive mood, feeling good, less pain), and giving greater energy, just to name a few.  

Going in a clockwise motion also follows the digestive tract.  It is with this simple circling motion that you can begin to stimulate your digestive tract before you even get out of bed.

3.  After I have circled my stomach several times lightly, I begin to focus on places in my belly that I noticed tenderness, pain or knots.  With a bit more pressure, I dig a little deeper in certain spots, moving my fingers in what I think of as a "cat's paw" movement.  When you begin to do this, you will know what feels good, the exact spot, the pressure, the way you want to move your fingers.

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Whereas the circling motion in step 2 focuses on waking up the body physically, I feel this step adds an emotional aspect.  When I find a knot in my stomach, I feel I am releasing toxins in my physical as well as mental state of being.  Many doctors speak of the gut as the "second brain" housing moods, decisions, and behaviors (think:  "my gut  is telling me . . .").  

Take your time doing this massage.  The more time you have, the  more knots you will release, the bigger smile you will have!  

4.  Finally, I give a little energy blast by rubbing my hands quickly over my stomach, my chest, and the sides of my body.  This gets in to Chinese Medicine, which we can talk about in a later post, but for now, trust me, it works!  Once my body has some energy, I throw in a little bit of light stretching while still in the bed, and presto: 



Deep Breathing - Belly Massage - Energy Rub - Stretching


Here's to having a BLESSED & GOLDEN DAY!

© margaret young