How you spend your morning can have a significant impact on how you show up for the rest of the day, so taking a brief moment to yourself upon waking up can pay off. The under five-minute morning meditation below from yoga teacher and energy healer Janine Martins is all about rising with the sun to naturally energize and center your mind and body before starting the day. “First thing in the morning, it’s healthy to have a small spike in our energy because that then translates throughout the rest of the day, giving us motivation,” explains Martins.
In her morning meditation, Martins guides you through a visualization process designed to allow you to connect to solar energy. What is that exactly? “Your body is designed to move with the rhythm of the sun, so you rise in the morning, you find your peak at mid-day, and then you slowly start to come down,” says Martins. “When you can mimic the natural rhythm of the world around you and the organic energy that is being fed to you, you move with more efficiency, more grace, and you’re not resisting what is true and what is real,” she adds, noting that her five-minute morning meditation was created with this intention.
How to Make the Most of a Morning Meditation
With meditating in general, it’s best to find a comfortable position sitting on a cushion or chair or lying down if a seated position doesn’t sound appealing. You can cue up some morning meditation music or a guided meditation such as Martins’ above, or you can meditate in silence, depending on what feels right to you. (
Before pressing play on this guided meditation, start with a little bit of breathwork if you have the time, recommends Martins. “Having a strong breath practice calms and stills the mind so it’s much more accessible to find meditation,” she explains. “Breathwork before meditation is basically like the warm-up exercises you do before you go on a run. It’s preparation so that you are already in a very calm and stable place and you’re not fighting with the mind, which is already organically moving in that direction of stillness.”
Before this morning meditation, practice a type of breathwork called Nadi Shodhana, aka alternate nostril breathing, which is a type of breath designed to balance the left and right sides of the body, both hemispheres of the brain, and the divine feminine and masculine energies, recommends Martins. To practice this breathwork before meditation, sit comfortably and place your pointer finger and middle finger in the center of your forehead, with your thumb near your right nostril and your ring finger near your left nostril. Start by taking a deep breath in through your right nostril, with your ring finger gently plugging your left nostril. Hold your breath at the top for a moment, plug your right nostril, and then exhale out of your left nostril. Now, breathe in through your left nostril, hold at the top, and exhale out your right nostril, using your thumb and ring fingers to open and close each nostril. Martins recommends repeating this alternate nostril breathing method for three to five minutes before starting the meditation.
The Benefits of Morning Meditations
While you can benefit from meditation at any time, morning meditation is great because it helps prepare your mind and body for the day, says Martins. “If the mind is stable and focused, anything that you do for the rest of the day is already primed to come from a place of ability and focus — and that is ultimately part of the goal of the practice so that you can transcend your mind so that you are not being pushed around by the thoughts [and instead] moving very steadily throughout your day,” she says. (
Digestion is another key benefit of morning meditation, says Martins. “Two of the biggest things that affect digestion are anxiety and stress,” she notes. “So, if you start your day from a place of reduced anxiety and reduced stress, you impact your digestion in a very powerful way.”
Morning meditation may also help you manage interpersonal challenges with more ease. When you meditate, you are more likely to be patient, slow down your speech, and be a better listener, since your mind is stable and calm, says Martins. And, with all that patience and stability, you are more likely to know when you need to step away for a moment too. “The mindfulness of your day — especially in dealing with other people — is improved by meditation because you are not racing ahead,” explains Martins. “When you are present in the moment, you recognize the things the other person is saying and when you feel triggered by something, If you meditate before you start your day, then you’re in a much better place to have more easeful experiences with people in your life, even if they’re challenging.”