Gökotta, this Swedish ritual that reconciles you with the morning

Home Gökotta, this Swedish ritual that reconciles you with the morning
Written by Doug Hampton

(ETX Daily Up) – Getting up early in the morning isn’t always easy. But a Swedish summer ritual, called “gökotta”, suggests getting up at dawn in order to enjoy nature and start your day better. Between resilience and stimulation, this habit offers a personal moment where tranquility and meditation are essential.

We know that getting up late every day is a bad habit that can have negative effects on mental and physical health. Stress, irritability, increased risk of disease, the list goes on. In Sweden, there is a tradition to start the day off right: gökotta. This ritual, which could be translated as “getting up early to hear the first birds sing”, consists of getting up at dawn to enjoy nature, birdsong and calm. Gökotta is practiced from the first day of Ascension (in May) until the middle of summer.

Every day, you should ideally get up between 4am and 6am… like the birds. The gökotta is practiced in different ways, according to the tastes of each one. A ten-minute walk in a park, a jog on a forest path, meditation at sunrise or sitting in your garden with a cup of coffee in your hand.

But what are the benefits? In an interview of Passion Health, Sleep specialist at Antwerp Hospital, Johan Verbraecken explains: “Being active early in the morning does indeed have many benefits as the day progresses. Your blood pressure increases and your fat burning begins. Plus, your cortisol levels peak in the morning and you have more energy for the rest of the day.”

Gökotta has many scientifically proven benefits. Outdoor sounds, as well as natural light, are known to stimulate well-being and promote good mood. For example, researchers managed to show that morning light helps you feel more focused in the morning and sleep better at night. And let’s not forget that natural light is a vector of serotonin, an important hormone in the regulation of mood. The frequentation of green spaces, essential in the gökotta, would also make it possible to improve its cognitive capacities.

If you are a night owl, you can always adapt the gökotta to your daily life. For example, you can treat yourself to meditation time in nature. No birdsong? You can always fall back on the nature sounds of apps on your smartphone. Also, you can practice the Swedish ritual at work by taking advantage of breaks to go for a walk in a nearby park. Today, more and more places are dedicated to the sounds of nature such as quiet parkswhich are completely silent parks located in the city, or even tourist areas such as the station mountain of Courmayeur in Italy.

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