Your brain is like your dog; it is solely devoted to you and only wants to make your life better. Feed and pet it, and it will be your best friend, loyal until the end of time. However, if you neglect or abuse it, it could bite you badly. Before you start your day, here are some excellent tips on how to feed and pet your brain.

1. Develop an Exercise by Which you Focus on the Things you are Grateful for

Why? You’ve heard of the phrase, “woke up on the wrong side of the bed”, which is true in that the way you start your day has a major impact on your attitude and the way you feel all day long. Saying aloud, writing down, or even thinking about the things you are thankful to have in your life puts your brain in a state of euphoria that can carry you through your day. You’ll notice the impact this trick has on you from day one. You will have more energy, be more positive, and serve people better because of it.

How? You must have a method you use every day, otherwise the busy nature of your life will take over and you won’t benefit from this simple but effective trick. My personal method is taking a walk to the end of my block and back while saying aloud to myself all the things I am grateful for in my life. This is something that is so simple, takes less than two minutes, and is a major difference maker.

Drink Water

Why? While you sleep your body becomes dehydrated. Part of that groggy feeling you have in the morning is your body craving water. The brain cares more about keeping you alive than it does about how productive of a day you have. Therefore when you answer the body’s call to be hydrated at the start of your day, you are better able to use your brain for the important tasks you need to accomplish.

How? If you’re like most adults, the first beverage your grab in the morning is your coffee. You don’t have to stop drinking coffee, but you will garner far better results if you grab a glass of cool water beforehand. A good habit to help is to have a water bottle filled with water in the fridge ready to go the night before so there’s one less task for you in the morning (or reason to skip it).

Stretch

Why? Look at all the things you are about to accomplish today. Before you take on the marathon of life, take a minute to loosen up and stretch your body out. The brain is connected to every part of your body. When you can make any part of your body happy and give it what it wants, your brain will thank you for taking care of it.

How? You don’t have to do a full on yoga session, just take sixty seconds to do a few stretches and get your blood pumping. Keep it simple, this is a task you could get done while waiting for the shower to warm up.

Do Something Small for Someone Else

Why? You know just how good it feels to do an act of kindness. Imagine starting your day that way all the time! Also think about how this will enrich your relationships with others. These examples I will share with you anyone can do at any time, they are free and take almost no time.

How? Here are some examples, do one of these a day and just watch how much better your relationships get. Put a sticky note of love or encouragement on the bathroom mirror for a significant other, roommate, etc. Put out a fresh towel for someone else’s shower. Send a text to an old friend, “hope you are doing great, thinking of you!”. Do a chore that isn’t your usual responsibility. Send a picture of a quote to someone and say, “made me think of you

All four of these brain-healthy tips would add maybe four or five minutes combined to your morning schedule, but will have an immeasurable impact on your daily energy, focus, happiness, attitude, and motivation. Try one, try them all. You won’t be disappointed, and your brain will thank you!