Illinois sunrise

How can living in tune with nature’s rhythms and cycles set you up for a more productive and energetic day, as well as reducing stressful habits?  When we hone in on the energy Earth has to offer, it can allow us to fall into an easier daily flow.  When we rise and set with the sun, we find ourselves getting quality sleep at night and waking with less effort, and it allows for a more productive use of time. Our bodies are set to live by nature’s timer.  We are offered sunlight for times when our bodies and brains are meant to be more active, and darkness when it is time to slow down and rest, so our bodies can rejuvenate for the following day.   Here are some steps and tips to rising and setting with the sun and why they are important:

  1. Rise with the sun.  Try and wake up around 5 AM.  This is a little before the sun comes up, depending on your location and the time of year.  When you do this, see if you can take this time for yourself by practicing meditation and/or some sort of exercise you enjoy.  This wakes up mind and body and gets you focused and active for the day.  You can use this method to elevate your energy levels and keep your mind and body grounded and motivated for the day.  When waking up early to practice self-care, we open the rest of the day up for production and no longer need to worry about when we are going to squeeze in exercise after a workday, or taking care of children, or whatever else might pop up during the day.  You are ready and focused!
  2. Watch the sunrise!  This is a great way to welcome the day!  If you move into a mindset of gratitude while watching the sunrise, you are setting yourself up with positive energy to help motivate your day.  In some studies, it is believed to be good for your eyesight (reminder: this is looking at a sunrise, not trying to stare at an intense midmorning or late day sun). 
  3. Rising early helps set up proper mealtimes for optimal energy levels.  When we rise early, we tend to eat breakfast earlier, which leads to and earlier lunch, and supper.  It is better for digestion to eat early in the evening so your body can digest food properly.  This helps you wake up without feeling sluggish from eating late the night before.  Proper digestion assists in efficiently converting the food we eat into energy.  What types of food are you using for energy?
  4. Rising early also assists in getting a good night sleep.  If you are waking at 5 AM, practicing self-care, and eating at proper meal times your body will naturally be ready to wind down as the sun goes down.  Getting a full night’s sleep is important for daily production and focus.  This can increase your ability to generate creative ideas, be more productive in your field, as well as cut down on careless mistakes.
  5. Tune into daily cycles.  Our body goes through cycles according to the time of day.  Early morning, starting around 2 AM our brains become more active (this may be why you can remember your dreams when waking early in the morning).  Around 10 AM we move into a cycle where our bodies are meant to be physically active and our digestive energy increases. Then, around 2 PM we are back in a stronger mental energy cycle, and finally around 6 PM our minds and bodies naturally want to slow down.  If we rise and set with the sun, it is easier to fall into a natural flow with these cycles and utilize the energy available.  Imagine what you can accomplish if you are using your brain power and physical energy at the optimal time of day! 

Making a simple change, such as rising with the sun can make an enormous impact on daily life.  Having a daily routine helps reduce stress as your body begins to acclimate and realize what it is meant to do every day.  Living with the natural flow of the day increases power and energy to put your will into action and become more accomplished and aware.  Strong mental focus is a key factor in building blocks toward success!