Atomic Batteries to Power…

…Turbines to Speed! (or ‘Starting the Day Off Right’)

Every Superhero has their charge-up–the unique way they get into hero mode and bring their best to meet the challenges and opportunities that await them.

I think back to the old-school Adam West Batman TV series (Kapow!), and how upon learning of a villain’s nefarious plan, they would race to their hidden batpoles, slid down to the batcave, and gather their batgadgets for the mission ahead. Most memorable though, was when Batman and Robbin would jump into the Batmobile, Robin would ritualistically say, ‘Atomic Batteries to Power. Turbines to Speed.’

batmobileAtomic batteries and turbines on a car? What I am trying to point out here is not how ridiculous that phrase is, but how it signals to all those watching that things just got real. It is the power of a meaningful and potent ritual to get you mind clear, your body turned up, and your attitude straight. Such a ritual can mean the difference between a challenging day of successes or a terrible day of breakdowns.

A Hero’s Morning Ritual in Seven Parts

Today, I want to share with you a way of starting your day that I find super powerful. This heroic morning ritual is made up of seven specific focuses, and I know that when I attend to these seven focuses, I am able to meet my day with a sense of groundedness, balance, resilience and resource–whatever may come. And as an emerging Superhero yourself, I want you to also have access to these invaluable qualities every morning.

Now, this is not a typical ‘do this, then do this’ practice; we all know what to do, yet we still don’t do what we know. Part of why this morning ritual tends to be so successful is that the seven focuses are not specific actions but general themes. The main thing is that you do something from each theme; that you give your attention fully to each theme.

The magic is partly from the ritual’s spacious structure, which invites spontaneity and aliveness. The other part of the magic is the compilation of the seven distinct themes, as they each address a different aspect of your total self and result in a truly holistic charge-up. Huzzah!

To the Batcave!

Below are the seven specific focuses and a bit of context for each, as well as a resource for each to help you break the ice.

breathoflife1. Breathe

Prana. Chi. In-spiration. Breath is life and life is aliveness. Whether doing a complex breathing practice or simply breathing deeply, breath is one of the most potent, direct and intimate methods for connecting with one’s sense of inner aliveness and energy. It freshens focus, stimulates the immune system, increases creativity, uplifts mood and maximizes productivity.

Use the video below to learn a simple yet powerful breath practice that pretty much anyone can do in a minute or two.

kidstretch2. Stretch

You don’t need to be a yogi for this one. Just start stretching. Experiment. Roll your joints, lengthen your major muscle groups (arms, legs, spine), massage your tissues…just try it out!

By stretching a little bit everyday, you will come to quickly know your body and what helps it to feel awake and alive.

Check out this League article for a short guided stretching practice designed for all ability levels.

Jennifer Kim Meditation3. Hone

When the mind is clear, life moves with intelligence. It seems the recommendation to meditate is everywhere nowadays, with the hard science to back it up. Knowing how to hone your mind is like having a home that is organized, efficient and aesthetically pleasing. Awareness, sense acuity, focus, concentration, recall, imagination, pattern recognition, problem solving…a honed mind is an invaluable asset, especially to a Superhero.

Use this guided mindfulness meditation training from the League to start building a foundation for life-long mental wellness.

*As an added level of training and challenge, approach the other six focuses with a sense of meditative awareness–with mindfulness of what you are doing and how it feels–instead of letting your mind wander during your charge-up.

truejoy4. Emote

I always say that people don’t do things because they’re logical, people do things when they feel strongly about them–especially over the long term. Your ability to navigate your emotional spectrum, especially learning how to generate specific helpful emotional states on command, is a critical secret to a fulfilling and successful life.

Some of the most potent empowering emotional states include: self-love, gratitude/appreciation, delight, poignancy (feeling deeply moved), playfulness, purposefulness, compassion and connectedness.

Two of my favorite ways to stretch and enliven my emotional self are to listen to inspiring music (extra credit for spontaneous dance parties), and to watch short inspiring clips on youtube or the like. I personally have playlists built for this exact purpose. Check out this League article for three videos that are bound to help you emote.

 pushups5. Tone

Getting your blood pumping in the morning is a powerful way to feel more powerful. Get that muscular burn on by cranking out a set or two of push-ups, squats, pull-ups or plyo-jacks. Don’t go overboard–be patient with the Tone aspect of your morning ritual, building your capacity over time.

Want to make a more complete practice of your Tone focus? Mark Lauren is one of the best body-weight trainers I know of, and his site and videos are chock full of awesome content to get you pumped.

realsuperpowers6. Empower

While breathing and stretching and enlivening yourself is a great start to an empowered day, the ability to quickly and consistently connect with your bigger sense of life purpose is what will lead to an empowered lifestyle and life journey.

Life purpose–when it is specific and embodied–gives you the inner fuel and tenacity to stay committed over the long term, especially when overwhelming challenge enters your life. So use this time to learn how to quickly connect to some aspect of your life purpose during your morning warm-up.

If you are ‘higher power’ type of person, this is a great moment to feel into your connection with that presence of energy, or to simply experience your life purpose as your connection and relationship to all that is–aho mitakuye oyasin!

purewater7. Nourish

Don’t defeat your super self by choosing physical fuels that dampen your energy, cloud your mind or upend your attitude. Choose nourishment, not simply food.

At first, keep this part of the exercise simple by making a deliberate choice to put one thing in your body for the sake of self-care and self-empowerment.

You can start with something as easy as a consciously chosen glass of water or nutritious herbal tea. Or maybe a fruit you would otherwise pass up on the way out the door.

Ready to take it to the next level? Juices, smoothies, superfoods: Kris Carr is your woman!

Adding the Final Touches

Here are a few extra secrets to make your morning ritual really shine:

1. Though you can experiment with the order of the focuses, we strongly recommend that you always leave Nourish for last, as the body will be in its most primed state to make best use of whatever you choose to put in it.

2. Remember that this Hero’s ritual is more about showing up in each focus than any particular action or exercise. Explore and be creative; approach with a sense of curiosity and wonder.

3. Whenever possible, do your ritual in a space of nature. If you can go to the woods, great! If it is the difference between your bedroom and your backyard, head outside. Try to get connected to as much green matter, fresh air, sunlight and soil as possible. Doing this will heighten the impact of your practice.

4. As an alternate approach to the daily practice, you can choose one of the seven aspects each day to give special focus to, adding a few extra minutes to explore it more fully.

Success: Making It a Habit

sassybatmanWe create breakthroughs when we have clear, reasonable goal, when we feel inspired, and when we show up with consistency. To understand the deep science underneath habit hacking, read our article on the subject.

Beyond this, my suggestion for success is to make this firm yet spacious commitment for the coming week: ‘I will do these seven things every day this week for no more than 10 minutes total’.

If that proves too much, start by doing one focus for a few minutes. Then the next day do two focuses. The next day, three… Keep going until you either successfully get all seven under your belt, or until you drop the ball, at which point you focus on this growth edge until you can consistently meet all seven focuses.

As always, we recommend sharing your commitment with another person or group, to give you the support and accountability often necessary to create lasting growth. And of course we always appreciate when you share this information with those that you feel may benefit. Then we all win =)

Here’s to an upcoming week of awesome mornings and dynamic days!
Eka, aka SuperSpark

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