Taking a Breather: The Six Minute Habit that Can Change Your Day

By Chelsea Kane 
FirstCupMorningSeries.com

I am excited to introduce you to Chelsea Kane with a guest blog post! Chelsea is a good friend I got to know while wine tasting our way through Cape Town late last year. Since then, we have supported each other through the ups and downs of new ventures, and I am proud to support the launch of her new series. If this sounds like something of interest, or you want a taste of how I start my days, you can sign up here. I hope you enjoy her post, and the similar experiences we’ve had as we turned the tables on our lives!

– Nicole
p.s. stay tuned for more on what I’ve been up to the past few months!

Like Nicole, I too am a digital nomad that travels full time while working remotely.  I left a stressful job working in PR in New York City for one of the top companies in my industry, thinking that Remote Year would offer a change of pace and an entertaining way to see the world.  

What I didn’t expect was the extremely positive way in which it affected my physical, mental, and emotional health.  

I wouldn’t classify my state as “burnout” in New York; it was more like autopilot.  I’d wake up after only a few hours of sleep to immediately check my emails, rush through the getting ready process and morning commute, to sit at my windowless desk for the entire day, maybe leaving to pick up lunch if I had time.  During busy season, 12-hour days were considered “light.”  I was constantly stressed, a bit frantic, and known to completely crash on the weekends, sleeping for upwards of 14 hours at a time to make up for that week’s depletion.  

The ironic part: I liked my job.  Having a boss that was both a teacher and a cheerleader made the work feel important and valued, and my coworkers were among my best friends.  Had you asked me at the time, I would have said I was happy.  

Leaving that world to see the world taught me that not everyone moves at a lightning-fast pace at all times.  It’s ok to take a moment, take a breather, and take a lunch break.   My new clients were no longer as fast paced or demanding, so I actually had time to 1) catch up on years of lost sleep and 2) figure out what I enjoyed outside of work.  

Of course, I loved the exploration of new places, trying new foods, and meeting new people.  But beyond that, I discovered a love for personal development.  I started eating up all the materials I could get my hands on, listening to podcasts as I walked around new cities, and ending most days with a book in bed.  I read about health and nutrition, leadership, mindset, meditation, you name it – and then I started to put into practice what I learned.  I learned to better manage my time, my emotions, and my relationships.  I developed a morning routine that involved meditating, journaling, and learning, and a regular workout habit.  

The information I was ingesting was making a real impact, and with thoughtfully doled out quotes and concepts, my friends began benefitting from it, too.  This last March an idea hit me: if the concepts I’m sharing can have a positive impact on my friends, they could probably help others, too.  

Not everyone has the time or desire to quit their job, travel the world, and pick up a self-improvement habit, but if I can distill what I’m learning down to bite-sized pieces of knowledge, it’s an easily-digestible way for people to learn and grow, without having to put in hours and hours of work.  

The idea of helping others to infuse an extra ounce of calm, productivity, fulfillment, and joy into their lives led me to develop First Cup Morning Series.  I call it six minutes of insight, information, and inspiration designed to start your day with intention.  But what does that mean exactly?  

In this four-week series, members receive a six-minute audio clip sent to their inbox fifteen minutes before they wake up.  Within those six minutes, they’ll be guided through a breathing exercise, a helpful quote or piece of wisdom from an industry expert, and end with a reminder, mantra, or question to take into the day.  

I understand that most people are too busy to read 28 self-help books, and even if they weren’t, the task sounds a bit daunting.  My goal is to make that easier.  I want to make this valuable information digestible, so you can begin to feel some of the benefits.  

Over the years, my shoulders have learned to relax down my back (where they should be).  I’m no longer as quick to snap or to jump to a place of negativity at the smallest backhand comment or in-opportune situation.  My mood, demeanor, and relationships aren’t the only things to change; I lost weight, my blood pressure is down, and I have more energy.  The change in my daily routines and the knowledge I’ve gained is making an impact on my physical body.  Don’t get me wrong – I certainly don’t have everything figured out.  But as I’m on this journey, I wanted to share the things I’ve learned along the way in hopes that others, too, can savor some of the benefits. 

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