Vail Daily column: Rise and shine |

Vail Daily column: Rise and shine

Did you know that the way we greet each day will determine and define almost every one of our thoughts, meetings or interactions, and even our attitudes for the day?

It’s true.

I know that sometimes it is just a chore for some people to even get out of bed. Back aches, shoulder pain, neck stiffness, and other physical ailments that have taken up residence in our bodies leave us reaching for the bedside Advil or Tylenol before even attempting to emerge from the comfort of our prone positions. And for others there is a need for that first cup of coffee before any type of greeting to themselves or the world is even possible.

What’s the first thought that enters your mind when you first rub the sleep from your eyes? Have you ever thought about it? I have asked this question of many people, and I was really not amazed to find that most people have no clue about their first thought of the day. If they are not gripped by pain or discomfort they simply allow their mind to wander and whatever enters their mind or field of vision, well that becomes the focus and sometimes their course for the day.

Stress and worry are the first thoughts for many. And as one reader shared with me, “Once that starts, sometimes depression or anxiety sets in and then my day is off to a horrible start.”

Participate in The Longevity Project

The Longevity Project is an annual campaign to help educate readers about what it takes to live a long, fulfilling life in our valley. This year Kevin shares his story of hope and celebration of life with his presentation Cracked, Not Broken as we explore the critical and relevant topic of mental health.

Regardless of the levels of stress and worry we all may face, including the body aches and pains that we suffer with, we can control how we rise and shine and greet each day.

The greeting of each day could include a quick “I am so happy to be alive” smile or grin because as my good friend Zig Ziglar says, “Every day is a good day, just try missing one.” While for others, including yours truly, the very first thing to start our day is a quiet prayer, thanking God for the goodness of the day before it even begins. And I would say that as an early riser and a morning person by nature this is easy for me. Or as some have argued, it is because I begin each day this way, that this practice has made me a morning person over time. I do love my mornings.

The point is that you, me, we, all of us can all be in control of how each day begins by simply choosing to think about each day and plan for the positive. What does that mean? It means that before closing our eyes and enjoying that well deserved sleep, we envision all of the wonderful and amazing things that await us when morning does come. We plant the seeds of optimism in our thoughts and prayers as we anticipate with great joy the coming of tomorrow. By the way, if you really get into this practice you will enjoy a much more restful and peaceful sleep, too.

Lastly, can you just imagine the impact on your family, your friends and your coworkers when they witness and then benefit from your new and improved morning “rise and shine” attitude? It becomes infectious and even contagious. If you don’t believe me, just try it for a week and see for yourself the change it will have on you and all of those around you.

How do you rise and shine? Are you a morning person yet? Tell me all about it at and let’s make it an even better than good week.

Michael Norton is a strategic consultant, business and personal coach and motivational speaker, and CEO of He writes a weekly motivational column for the Vail Daily.

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