Let me tell you, there is something to be said for taking a shower first thing in the morning to wake up. And using that woozy wake-up time in the bathroom rather than in front of the computer.
Having been freed of the “wake up, shower, get dressed, breakfast, brush teeth” morning ritual since I became self-employed over 18 months ago, I think I’m on the verge of reclaiming that ritual for myself. I’d already noticed a few months back that it made a real difference, and then I slipped out of it again.
As we’re talking of morning rituals, I’ve recently started doing nasal irrigation (basically, letting saline water run in one nostril and out the other to clean the nose) — and my, do I wish I’d discovered this 15 years ago.
Let me explain: I’m allergic to dust-mites, which isn’t a huge deal in itself, apart from the fact I tend to run about with a permanently runny nose and a pack of hankies all year around. I’m also rather fragile in the upper respiratory department, so I get a lot of colds and stuff.
Well, since I started using a neti pot (see demo video), I’ve basically stopped having to carry tissues with me. Like… I went from blowing my nose 10 times a day to zero.
A few tips if you’re tempted, from the two links above and my personal experience — and if you have any kind of nose/sinus problem, I would definitely recommend that you give it a try.
- use warm-but-not-too-hot water (should feel nice and warm on the hand without being hot)
- don’t salt too much (my neti pot came with special de-iodized salt, and instructions say one flat teaspoon)
- don’t blow your nose, specially blocking one nostril, to get the water out — just blow gently through both nostrils and do the exercises at the end of the video (you’d be surprised how much water your nose can hold when you thought it was empty)
- if it hurts badly, something could be wrong — better check with a doctor
- if water starts running out of your mouth, don’t panic and keep breathing and just let it happen — your position might be slightly off (no big deal, with some practice you’ll figure it out for yourself)
I had a nasty cold this week and though at times I was so congested things seemed hopeless, I have the impression nasal irrigation really helped me get through it faster, without it getting worse, and with less cold meds than usual. So, it seems it helped with that too.