A friend recently asked, “What’s your secret? How are you so high-energy in the morning?” I wish I had a fancier or more eloquent answer, but the truth is, there is no secret. I rely on Ayurveda to elevate my productivity

The Secret of Dinacharya Revealed

My power kick comes from the very ancient ayurvedic concept of dinacharya, which is a daily ritual of self-care. Dinacharya is the Sanskrit word for “daily routine” (‘din’ means day and ‘charya’ means to follow or close to). According to Ayurveda, a daily routine utilizes our natural biological clock, per nature’s rhythm. In a nutshell, dinacharya is a simple, yet profound way to bring radical change to one’s physical, emotional, and mental well-being.

Keep the Morning Routine of Dinacharya Simple

How we begin our morning sets the tone for the rest of the day. My morning routine allows me to awaken and prepare my body and mind for the day’s goals. I am awake before sunrise, no matter the season, and that helps me feel more alert and energized. I allow myself to begin each day with mindfulness. My mornings are meditative, that doesn’t necessarily mean I sit down and meditate for an hour. But I purposefully remain present in the now. And stay wordless for the first hour of the day (trust me; I am a big chatterbox otherwise). Being in the moment and paying close attention to everything I think, observe, act upon, write, or put in my mouth, this is how I strive to calm my mind and body. As I sip hot water, I say my words of gratitude. I also do morning writing, which is different from journaling morning pages. I set aside time for writing personal essays—I find the process both grounding and cathartic.

My 16-step daily, Ayurvedic routine

  1. Wake up before sunrise (ideally before 6am when vata turns to kapha)
  2. Say words of gratitude
  3. Drink hot water
  4. Eliminate
  5. Scrape your tongue with a tongue cleaner
  6. Wash your face and brush your teeth
  7. Abhyanga—massage the body with warm oil
  8. Take a shower
  9. Do yoga and pranayama for 10–15 minutes
  10. Make lunch your biggest meal
  11. Take a walk/work out in the middle of the afternoon (depending on your schedule)
  12. Eat dinner by 7p.m. at the latest
  13. Get into bed no later than 10p.m.
  14. Practice anuloma viloma, alternate nostril breathing, before going to bed
  15. Meditate for at least 20 minutes
  16. Apply oil to your feet and massage the nerve endings

How morning routine can help you balance your mind

I know that some people find the idea of predictability and routine boring. Waking up and going to bed, as well as eating your meals at the same time every day, can sound mundane. Truth: establishing a daily routine is one of the best ways to assure a balanced state of mind. It can help you stay healthy and boost your productivity. After all, our daily habits, not occasional indulgences, have the most significant impact on our health and well-being. Did you know that the gut and brain have the steady ability to communicate via the nervous system, the hormones, and the immune system? If our digestion is good, our brain works better, which directly impacts our productivity.

So, are you ready to start your daily, Ayurvedic morning routine?