Growing up, I was always a morning person. I’d be one of the first ones up, excited to start the day. I continued to be that way until after college and then it became harder and harder to wake up with more than enough time to get ready for the day. I got into the habit of throwing my hair up, getting ready, and quickly head out the door for work. But I have missed those quiet mornings.
I’ve noticed that when I am in the mountains, it is so easy for me to be the first to wake up. In the summers at the cabin, I am the first one outside spending time with the hummingbirds.
But my day to day routine, I have such a hard time rolling out of bed no matter what I have on the agenda. I want to wake up early enough to have time and not to rush out the door – to have enough time to do yoga before work.
So November, I made that my goal. To wake up earlier than I have to allow myself some me-time.
But that was easier said then done. I had created a chart of what I was going to do each morning the first week. The first few days in November, I only got up early for the days where I had to be at work early. I couldn’t find the motivation to wake-up then my plan wasn’t going to work. I thought that these mornings would be the perfect time to make progress in my yoga practice, to slip in a few peak postures with my morning practice. I thought it would be a great motivator and a great way to start the day energized. But I recently developed a hip injury that has prevented me from pushing hard in my yoga practice and has really been disappointing. I was so ready to progress in my yoga practice, but my body had different ideas.
And then on November 7th after not getting up much earlier and going through a long day it clicked for me. My plan for my mornings was all wrong. I was so excited to take my yoga practice further that I forgot what initially inspired me to be a morning person again. I forgot those quiet mornings with the hummingbirds. My mornings are supposed to be me pushing myself. And I don’t think that a “plan” will really work for me. Some days I feel like waking up and doing activities such as reading a good book, meditating, doing yoga (when my hip allows),or just spend time with my animals and enjoy every sip of my matcha. Some days I want to do all of those things.
My mornings are for me. I am what I would call an extroverted introvert. My careers have developed several extrovert traits which I love, but I have always been an introvert. So I need at least one part of my day to allow myself to be an introvert. Waking up early gives me time to find peace and relaxation in my practice, and to work on healing my body – healing my hip, my stress, and my anxiety.
And even though my mornings don’t always look the same, it’s a journey. Throughout this journey I have learned a few things that have helped me stay true to becoming a morning person:
- Drink water when you first wake-up.
Whether you enjoy a cup of hot water with lemon or a pint glass of water, it’s important to have water in the mornings to not only get your metabolism going but also start your day off on the right foot with your hydration levels. It’s also very energizing to me to have water first thing in the morning, I don’t usually want to go back to bed after that. It helps motivate me.
- Wind down at night.
I’ve noticed that when I take the extra five minutes in the evening to visualize my morning and to prepare for my morning that it goes a little smoother. For one, it gets me excited for the morning. And two, it makes it harder to stay in bed and hit the snooze button. I like to set-out a comfy sweatshirt, my slippers, a book, journal and yoga mat just so I am ready for my mornings.
- Stay off of your phone or computer.
Give yourself time to not be on the computer or phone. My day is filled with sitting at a computer so I try to let my eyes rest in the morning. I noticed when I check my emails first thing, my anxiety grows and I feel like I have to rush my morning routine. My phone (mostly Instagram), is my greatest distraction so I try to stay off of my phone so I feel like I have accomplished my morning routine and am re-juvenated.
- Find movement.
My mornings don’t usually consist of a long yoga practice, but I flow through a simple set of postures that helps move my spine in all directions and starts to get the lactic acid out of my muscles. Turn on your favorite playlist and move with your breath.
- Progress not perfection.
This phrase is so common right now, but it really is true for any goal that you set. Do not strive for perfection or else you can become disappointed when it doesn’t happen right away or how you have planned. Go for progress and take one day at a time. My mornings aren’t perfect. Some days, I wake up just 15 minutes early and for now I am okay with that as long as I make the best of those 15 minutes.
I hope that my journey will inspire you to find yourself some me-time in the mornings, even if it’s just 15 minutes.