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Regain control with help from a Northridge Therapist, Counseling
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I don't know where to start today.

Familiar with the question when you first wake up in the morning: "Where do I start?"

It is common, and for many it is frequent throughout the day. The first thing I think of is "wow, there are so many things I can do today. Yum, sitting down to a great cup of coffee sounds great." And then I give myself permission to have a second cup, peruse through my emails, get hooked by the talking radio with the negativity pouring out.

Stop, rewind!

Choose: What I know is that coffee slows me down. No not the caffeine, it's the the process of making coffee and settling in with it. The quick excuse that accompanies it - "oh, I deserve to relax into my morning, and right, this is being mindful. I can even call this self-care, self-kindness.

Actuality: When I don't have a cup of joe in my hand then I can get my sneakers on and get out in the morning with an exhilarating walk. My four legged companion and I get moving before all the cars full of commuters and child shuttlers get onto the streets. It's quiet, except for the squawking crows and cooing morning doves. The squirrels start a quick game of chase around the tall palm trees and the brilliance of the morning eases me into a calm state of appreciation. We break into a determined pace sprinkled with occasional intervals of jogging.

"Where I start" is critical to feeling good about the goals ahead of me. If I had that cup of coffee my entire day is changed. Walking a narrow path down our sidewalk-less streets, breathing exhaust and hoping the driver behind the oncoming driver can see us. I am put into a defensive walk that I hurry to get through, often cutting the distance short to avoid the chaos. This walk takes longer because of all the waiting I have to do to cross the small streets that were peaceful and empty an hour earlier when I awoke.

Seize the day and the opportunities expand. I get home from our walk and I am motivated to jump into my morning exercises and follow that up with a quick green smoothy or fruit filled bowl of oatmeal. A shower and I am ready to jot down the goals I came up with on my walk and start progressing through the day.

Perhaps the question of "Where do I start?" is not nearly as important as "how I start."

Start! Then we can get onto the question of "What next?"

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