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First Light: My Daily Self Care Routine

I’m a Hollywood publicist by trade and my interest and passion is Communication.  The art of using every available means to communicate new thoughts and ideas to revolutionize our world.
Many of us lead busy lives and our self-care may be wanting.  Either we don’t get enough exercise, or the right nutrition.  Some of us have trouble sleeping and may become addicted to sleeping aids.  Others may be workaholics, staying at the office until 10 or 11 every night.  The idea of caring for ourselves is oftentimes foreign and hardly considered.
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We feel irritable and frazzled because our bodies are on over drive, continually processing huge amounts of information, stress and environmental dangers of which few of us are even aware.  Humans are in large part a product of our environment, therefore, we must, each one of us, be conscious of the surroundings we create for ourselves.  From home life to work and social life.  Take stock of who are your friends and acquaintances, where you are and what you are doing.  Ask yourself why. And be sure every moment of your life is your greatest vision of yourself.
I have been in this business for more than two decades.  I have seen many folks, fads and friends come and go and I have learned to adopt a daily routine which helps me to not only keep my wits about me but thrive in a fast paced office environment and in the over stimulated American urban life experience.
I call this First Light because it means we must be consciously aware of the types of experiences we are creating for ourselves beginning with the First Light of Each Day.

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The first thing you notice about First Light is that we don’t have any news segments.  We advise that you keep TVs, radios and computers off for the first hour or so after you wake up in the morning, in order to give yourself time to set your personal intention for the day as well as prepare yourself for your agenda and the items that you must accomplish.

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Set your Daily Intention

As we awaken, we connect with the Great Spirit or God or whatever works for you.  We send a prayer of thanks and we set our intention for the day.  Via a series of affirmations, we say:  “I am well today.  I am at peace today.  I am joyful today.  I am happy today.  I am kind, compassionate and loving today.”
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Engage in daily yoga, tai chi or stretching

Next, we advise that you engage in a short period of stretching, Tai Chi, Yoga or any other type of exercise, which will raise your pulse and your energetic vibration, giving you a brighter outlook throughout the day.  If you’re a parent, we encourage that you instill in your children the habit of daily exercise as key to both physical and mental health.
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Daily exercise is key to a healthy body and mind

Your body is truly your temple and reaching your divinity can be done easily by speeding up the breath.  Include in your daily practice at least 45 minutes of vigorous exercise.  It’s been scientifically proven that regular exercise helps to prevent obesity, disease and generally contributes to a healthier mind and body. Some people like to wake up early and hit the gym or go running in the park. Others take a lunch break and go bicycling.  Many others leave work and go straight to a gym or to a baseball, football field to get their daily exercise.  Do the one the works for you and do it daily.
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Oatmeal, honey, berries & milk

After a short period of morning stretching comes your first meal of the day.  It is called breakfast because we are breaking the fast that was set in motion when we went to sleep 8-10 hours ago.  The first meal of the day must be warm and gentle on your stomach.  Upon waking, our bodies crave carbohydrates for energy.  Eat whole wheat toast doused in olive oil.  We also need protein, so a soft boiled egg may be advisable but not every day.  We also need minerals and vitamins.  Drink hot green tea with honey.  Shave ginger and turmeric root into your tea.  On days, you don’t eat an egg, have oatmeal with honey, turmeric, cinnamon and ginger root.
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Your largest meal should be lunch.  Lentils, vegetables, goat cheese, small amounts of meat and crusty whole wheat bread.  Variations on this theme.  Think Mediterranean diet.
Dinner should be small and eaten early.  No more food than you can hold in your cupped hands.  Incorporate yogurt, fruits after dinner to aid in digestion during the night.
Generally, your diet should include large amounts of fruits and vegetables followed by grains, legumes and starches, complemented by small amounts of cured meat and goat or feta cheese.  Find out what your ideal caloric intake is given your age, height and weight and try to eat less than that number.  Your body will immediately adapt and you’ll enjoy renewed health, vigor, strength and flexibility.

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Try to take at least one of these and practice it daily in your life.  Once the one habit is built into your routine and becomes second nature, you can move to add another habit and so on, until you’ll wake up one day and realize you are living a completely different life than you had before.  You’ll also notice how much more peaceful, healthy and happy you feel.
The one action of taking care of ourselves by adopting self-loving habits into our lives, will transform not only our own lives, but the lives of our families, co-workers, our communities and, ultimately, our world.  Because like a stone hitting the surface of a pond, your actions will ripple out into the world creating good will and benevolence.  Even if you don’t see it or feel it, have faith that it is truly happening to our world.
Stay mindful throughout your day to ensure that you are checking in with yourself and that you are living the best experiences possible or if your day presents troubles and challenges, that you have the wherewithal to take a deep breath, accept the challenge and commit to learn the lesson being presented to you with strength, humor and humility.  Our own actions are seen by others who take them as example.  That’s how we change the world.