It’s been uncanny: recently I’ve read at least three different texts (books and articles) dealing with productivity, especially in the morning. So, taking the hint, I woke up at 5:30 this morning and tried this whole morning routine of a seasoned badass, and sure enough, it’s, well, badass.
When the alarm went off at 5:30 my brain and body immediately revolted, and it took just about all the grit I could muster to put on my glasses and a comfy sweater instead of crawling back into my warm, cozy bed (yes, I’m still thinking about bed. I’m only human). I came downstairs, and after my two large, overly reactive dogs realized nothing was wrong and they could go back to sleep, I threw a load of laundry in the washing machine, made a cup of coffee, and started writing. I started off with something easy: a to-do list for the day. Then, I moved on to journalling, which is not only good for my soul but also “primes the pump” for writing.
Because I have had two weeks off of work, any semblance of a routine has long disappeared. This first seemed like liberation but quickly became disorienting, especially with all of the holiday festivities. In retrospect, I should have clung to a routine, especially in the morning before anyone else was awake and certainly way before holiday activities for the day began, but instead I stayed in bed, sleeping for close to 10 hours a night and letting my daughter’s face pokes and demands for chocolate milk be my alarm. Because of this, I was always “reacting to my day rather than choosing my day” (see my earlier reblogged post from Time). I attribute much of my Grinch ‘tude, especially toward the end of the holiday season, to this constant state of resentful reaction to the demands and needs of others.
I am a morning person, and by developing a routine that includes getting several practical (like laundry) AND enriching (like writing) things done before my tiny human and husband wake up, I am better able to listen to them, help them, and love them. In fact, I’m better able to do all three for everyone in my life, including myself.
For more on developing positive habits like a morning routine, see Ruth Soukup’s Living Well, Spending Less. It’s my current lifestyle bible.