My Daily Practice

posted by Pilar Gerasimo 02/03/2014 2 Comments


I love my morning practice so much (just a few blissful minutes for me before I so much as glance at a screen), I share it with anybody and everybody who expresses the least bit of interest.

A while back, Julie van Amerongen, founder of the Practice Project, invited me to share my daily practice there. The Practice Project is this cool site where Julie collects the diverse practices of all sorts of smart and interesting people, from health and wellness gurus to business leaders and authors.

She has them describe those practices in their own words, explain why they do them, who inspired them, what gets in the way, how they overcome those obstacles, and so on. Really neat.

So when Julie first invited me to contribute, I was thrilled. And then, I confess, I had a moment of apprehension: Was my short-and-sweet little “morning minutes” routine too simple and unsophisticated to merit a profile like this? I mean the basics are pretty basic:

  • On waking, while coffee is brewing but before I’ve looked at any screens or turned on any electronic devices, I take a minimum of five minutes to light a beeswax candle and do something quiet and lovely for myself.
  • I might do yoga, meditate, play guitar, pull a wisdom card, journal, read a passage in an inspiring book, or just breathe and look out the window.
  • If it’s warm enough and the weather is nice, I take my morning minutes outside.
  • At the end of the practice, I take three deep breaths while focusing on my intention and vision for the day. Then I blow out the candle and move into action.

Apparently this practice is simple in a good way. It was a big hit with Julie, and with her audience. She even wrote about it in a piece for Elephant Journal, which made me feel even more proud and happy that I’d shared what was real for me, and what worked for me, even in the face of all my “good enough?” doubts.

I guess a lot of people must have the same challenge I do — creating even a little time for oneself in a hyper-busy world. Which of course is one essential element of choosing to be healthy in an unhealthy world (which just happens to be the subject of my forthcoming book on Healthy Deviance).

So check out my practice notes, read up on some of the other practices at the site, let me know what you  think. And then tell me (as Julie would ask): What is YOUR practice?

P.S. If you want to know more about the benefits of a morning practice, and how I go about mine, check out the “Morning” episode of The Living Experiment podcast that Dallas Hartwig and I do weekly!

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Jennifer 03/25/2014 at 1:07 pm

My practice has modified over the years depending on what I need at the time – prayer, meditation, journaling, inspiring reading, drinking water, sitting outside. I usually spend 30 minutes to an hour doing a combination of the above – I’m hoping to extend that soon adding in exercise in the morning now that the warmer weather is coming. I love getting outside first thing in the morning and moving – just makes the whole day better.

Pilar Gerasimo 04/24/2014 at 4:09 pm

That’s cool, Jennifer! Mine, too. I think it’s great to morph practices based on your needs, desires, etc. Just so fun to have the refuge of a practice to return to again and again.


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