I enjoy reading and learning about other people’s lives. Especially really successful, driven people. I want to know what they eat, how they sleep, what they do for fun, how they schedule their day, how they handle email, how they prioritize stuff, how they avoid burn out…..how do they do it??
One thing I have found that successful people have in common is morning routines. They all start their day very intentionally with the idea of starting off calm, focused and centered.
Most of them do some form of these things.
Most of them do NOT do these things.
Open social media
Hit the snooze button
Do work/occupation stuff
Their intentions are to spend the first part of their day focusing on their needs and making themselves an overall better person. Most of them emphasize this is not a long, drawn out routine. 5-10 minutes of meditation along with 5 minutes of journaling while drinking their morning breakfast beverage (most drink tea). And then another 5-10 minutes of stretching, yoga or mild calisthenics. Some of them do their daily workout in the morning, so of course, that takes longer.
Basically, one half hour to start their day on the right foot.
By opening email and social media first thing in the morning, you are letting other people determine how your day starts off. And if it is work email, you are letting others dictate your priorities for the day. These successful people choose not to let other people’s requests/needs affect their schedule or feelings right off the bat. Think about it. If something has happened overnight that is a true emergency, you would already know because someone would have actually called you.
The world won’t end if you don’t connect with the world within 30 minutes of waking up. I promise.
Knowing all that, let me share my routine(s).
When I was teaching my morning routine was routine, but there was nothing calm, focused or centered about it. I got up, fixed coffee, took a shower, made myself presentable, fixed a quick bite and drove to school. And that was on a good morning. It didn’t happen often, but I occasionally overslept or I couldn’t find the skirt I wanted or my hair just would not dry or I left the house only to turn around after three miles because I left my bag at home. Ya know, the stuff that happens to all of us.
It worked, but it didn’t necessarily start my day off in a Zen like state. And since I was already getting up at 4:50, getting up even earlier to do all these hippy- trippy- namaste things was just. not. happening.
Then, once I was no longer teaching and no longer having to get up at the butt crack of dawn, I decided to do a focused morning routine. I would get up, fix my coffee and go sit on our front porch swing. I would bring out three books. The book I was currently reading, a copy of The Secret and my journal. I would spend a few minutes reading and writing positive affirmations in my journal. On a super good day I’d even do a few sun salutations!
And get this, I didn’t even bring my phone outside at all!
Then we sold our house and life got way more interesting. I realized last week that I no longer have that morning routine and I miss it. Currently my morning looks like this.
Get up and fix coffee. Open email and read TheSkimm and The Morning Brew while drinking coffee. Nibble on breakfast #1. Open FB and look at notifications. If I see something important, I’ll read that. Then I get dressed and ready for work.
While there’s nothing terrible about that routine (and I do learn a lot with those two emails!), it doesn’t exactly fit with what I’d like to accomplish for myself in the mornings. As the weather gets nicer, I want to get back into that routine of reading, being thankful and sending out positive juju into the universe. Of course, I could totally do these things inside, but something about being outside just makes it better!
Y’all know I’m big on goal setting, so here we go. I’m setting a goal to get this morning routine back on track at least twice per week. I’ve got to go dig my copy of The Secret out of storage and get my journaling pen ready, but that part is easy. It just the part of dragging my lazy-non-morning-person butt up and at ‘em that is hard!
What does your morning look like?
What could you do to make it a more positive experience?
Stay Strong Y'all!
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