Some people journal every morning, while others meditate or work out. Personally, I begin every day by asking myself these two questions—a practice that has made me feel way more positive, focused, and supported.
As soon as I wake up, I ask, "What do I value the most today?"
Thinking this way helps direct me toward my biggest priority for the day ahead. Maybe it's a work project, time with loved ones, or just rest, but every day, I choose what I want to put first.
I didn't always do this—so often, it's tempting to focus on what we don't desire throughout our day. We might think, I really don't want to have a headache right now, or I don't want to be running late. But when we find ourselves getting stuck on what we don't want, that can become an opportunity for us to decide what's truly important. If you catch yourself thinking of all the things you don't want to happen, ask yourself what type of values are important instead. What do you want to focus on today? Maybe connection, love, kindness, or contribution?
The second question: "How do I want to feel for the day?"
The feeling I choose is usually closely linked to what I want to value. If I decide to value work, I may choose to feel productive and creative. If I want to value my time with loved ones, I'll want to feel generous and present.
This process is all about shifting our focus to what we can really do to prioritize our values and generate the feeling we do want, as opposed to what we don't want. If you decide you want to feel healthy, vibrant, awake, free, effective, on time—and you keep your focus on those feelings—you'll begin to shift your perspective.
I have honestly set an intention and turned my day around: I had a bad virus, and it really took me out of my daily routine. In the morning, I felt really sick and had to stay in bed. I could feel the guilt of not being able to keep up with my work start to creep up. But I was able to remind myself what my intention and my values were—and what I wanted to feel. I decided to value my health, and I wanted to feel rejuvenation.
What I noticed was that the more I gave myself permission to rest and recover, the more the anxiety around not getting things done went away. I learned how to take naps during the day and how to put my phone in my nightstand drawer so I wouldn't be constantly checking it. It became easier for me to do those things—guilt-free—when I knew my focus for the day was my health. I was able to take care of myself and heal.
When I can set the tone of my day, it trickles into everything I do.
I've seen this with my clients too. I was working with a woman who was really struggling to feel supported in her day-to-day. It was so easy for her to think of all the ways she wasn't getting the support she craved in her business, her relationships, and her life. I wanted to shift her values to what she desired, so I asked her to make a list of all the ways she had felt supported in the last week, the last month, and the last year.
When she was able to remember what it felt like to receive support in the past, it was easier for her to focus on getting support in the present. And if something came up where she still didn't feel supported, then her action was to state what she needed to get her needs met, even if it was something as simple as telling a barista, "I actually ordered a hot drink, not an iced one—can you please fix it?" That simple shift in deciding she wanted to feel supported led to a helpful, proactive approach for living life (even in the smallest moments).
When we shift our perspective to what we desire and what we value, we begin to see those opportunities pop up in our day-to-day lives. By applying these simple strategies to my morning routine, I've even begun to see the world a little bit differently—and it's definitely decreased my overall stress too. What would happen if you did the same?
Andee Love is a spiritual success coach who helps individuals and entrepreneurs spark business growth and overcome blocks to success. Start now with her free Success Formula.