Did you know that there’s a powerful connection between your mindset and your morning habits? How you wake up and the first things you do in the morning will influence your mindset — in a positive or negative way — for the rest of the day.

I don’t know about you, but I am very careful about when to let the outside world into my brain space. Why is that? Because I believe that my most precious commodity is the time and attention I give someone or something. And, I want to be sure I’m controlling the information, or at least the amount of information, that influences not only my mindset but my mental and physical health.

It’s especially important during challenging times like we’re experiencing right now.

It’s not easy. People are being bombarded with information that is packaged up and tied with a big bow of negativity. But, let’s call a spade a spade. Doom and gloom sells newspapers and advertising. It’s what boosts television ratings. Right now, newsfeeds are filled with reports that have led to uncertainty and, if you believe everything you see and hear, it’s more than uncertainty, it’s widespread fear and panic. The more the news media feeds us, the more we’re watching and the higher the ratings. Nineteen million people watched prime time news last week and “60 Minutes” which had a segment on the coronavirus topped the television ratings as the most popular show for that week.

Those numbers are staggering.

I’m not suggesting we put our heads in the sand like ostriches. I know a lot of people who have been affected by actions our state and federal governments have taken to try to keep people safe. I care about them and I am deeply saddened and concerned to hear how it has affected them. And, trust me, I get it that we need to know what is happening in the world around us so we can make informed decisions. But, you can decide when and how much information you take in; and you can decide how you will get that information. When you do that, you take control of your thoughts. Your decisions are then grounded in what’s rational rather than being based in fear or panic.

I started a new habit a couple of years ago that helps me start my day with a positive mindset. It helps refocus those anxious, negative feelings that have a tendency to spiral you right into depression. In fact, they did spiral me into depression. But now, my new habit helps me take control of my thoughts and now I’m deliberate and purposeful in planning and living my day.

This one small change in habit is more important today than it was to me a couple of years ago. It’s so important I wanted to share it with you. My hope is that it will help you take control of your feelings and emotions and that it will lift you up like it does me. Are you ready?

My morning mindset habit actually starts the night before. I no longer sleep with my phone on the night stand.

Yep, you read that right. So, a positive morning mindset actually starts the night before when you take your phone off vibration, set it to ring tone in case someone has an emergency and needs to call you and you plug the phone into an electrical outlet that is in another room. Yes, another room. Okay, it could also be a closet.

Most of you are probably freaking out right about now. But, stay with me. You see, if you immediately reach for your phone when your alarm goes off, or you immediately turn on the television in your bedroom, you’re opening the door to the anxiety you’re trying to keep in cheque. Once you let the outside world in, your mind is hijacked before you’ve had any chance to influence it yourself.

Think about that.

So, start your day by being deliberate in your thoughts. Once you get up, go for a walk, journal, meditate or read your daily devotional. Do whatever it takes to get you feeling good about the day. Here’s the thing; if you want to have a positive mindset, you have to get very serious about changing the habits that are no longer serving you or are bringing you down.

One of those habits is allowing the outside world, especially the media, into your head space before you’ve been there first. Putting your phone in another room is the first step. But, there’s more. I’ll be bringing you more ways to set the stage for a more positive day using a morning mindset routine. If you’re a little like me and can’t wait for all the goodness coming your way in future blogs, download my free Morning Mindset: Your Brain’s Cup of Joe (below). Let me know if there’s anything you’d like me to focus on. And, let me know what you’re doing to create your own positive mindset.

Because, trust me, mindset is critical to your overall health and wellbeing. As Mel Robbins says, “If you change the way you think, you will change your life.” I believe that. Change your life for the better.