Okay - total disclaimer - I am about to recommend that you get up at 5:00 in the morning (but the title probably gave that away already).
I should start by saying that, for a long time now, maybe since middle school, I have possessed a passionate dislike of rising any time before 8:00 am. I would wake up angry, usually rushed, feeling like I didn’t even have time to drink a cup of coffee, led alone do anything fulfilling for my own life - before going out to serve others. I was always tired and felt heavy - because I was stuck in the rut of maximizing awake hours at night to “decompress” with TV - not being at all prepared for the morning - and hitting snooze as many times as possible.
Now - in a way - I feel like I have very little room to even be talking about this yet - since it’s so new - but I do feel like a different person already - so I am going to anyway. : )
This is day 4 of 5:00 am.
Each day it is hard to get up - but I am excited to rise and to have time that I know is only for me. No one else is awake - the house is quiet and dark. Each night I go to bed thinking about what I want to achieve the next morning - and I prepare by laying things out downstairs to as not to make any noise. For a long time, I said this would never, ever, in a million years be feasible because of the dog - or because I would be too tired - but actually - my new routine has proven to be not only doable, but also transformative.
Stay downstairs watching TV until between 10:30-11:00 pm.
Wake - tired and heavy at 6:45-7:00 am.
Sit to have coffee - shower and dress and then make breakfast (then take care of everyone else all day long).
Always be mad I didn’t have time (or energy after dinner) to work out.
Go upstairs with Finley at 9:00. Shower and get in bed by 9:15/9:30.
Lights out no later than 9:45.
Alarm goes off at 5:00 am.
Quietly slither out of bed and sneak out of the room so Finley doesn’t hear me (he is hard of hearing anyway - so it’s achievable).
Bathroom/brush teeth and downstairs by 5:15.
15-20 minutes of exercise or yoga (whatever floats my boat!).
15-20 minutes of some form of learning or writing (usually writing so far).
15-20 minutes of producing - either working adding posts or graphics to my blog - knitting - planning yoga curriculum, etc.
The beauty of it is - before anyone else comes downstairs - I have spent time on numero uno. This makes such a big difference in my mood and my outlook for the day. I don’t feel last - I don’t have to wait for anyone else to give me time, or make me feel better - instead - I have taken control, and that’s a nice feeling.
I also, already, feel possessive of my “me” time. Possessive...like anyone in the house who wakes up early or during “my” time, will rue the day they decided to interrupt my peace….but maybe that’s only because I am on day 4 …maybe further enlightenment will occur after day 66...or 1,345.
This shift in routine just isn’t possible if you are not willing to pivot from what is familiar and comfortable. It was uncomfortable to draw boundaries and to remove myself from the boys and the couch. It was uncomfortable to change the clock my body has known for a long time. It was and admittedly still is uncomfortable…each day around 2:00 when I do wish I could take just a little 30 minute nap. But so far, I feel like my waking hours are happier, more fulfilled, empowered and purposeful since making this change.
If you would like to listen to the podcast that inspired me to learn more...click here!