You could say that I am not exactly a morning person… ask anyone who has had to wake me up. It’s like my being has been taken over by an angsty teenager… and she’s quite rude. For as long as I can remember I have been the night owl type. It was how I grew up and how my previous activities and jobs conditioned me to be. It was a learned behaviour and there wasn’t anything wrong with it. It was just how my life was, but as my life shifted, so did my needs. My life started to demand that I become a ‘morning person’ if I wanted to make my outlandish dreams come true. I decided that my crazy aspirations were more important than sleeping in (most days anyway, we all deserve a break). If you are looking to start implementing a morning routine, this is my quick list on how I am practicing unlearning the night owl life and learning that early bird thing.
Start small: My most productive days start at least two hours before I need to leave my house. If I need to leave at 8:00am that means I aim to get up at 6:00am. This is my personal preference and it may not work for everyone (especially those who work odd hours). Regardless this isn’t where we need to start nor is it necessary. Start small. Try giving yourself an extra 15 minutes every morning for one week. If that feels okay, add another 15 minutes the next week. Keep building up like this until you find your happy spot. You’ll be surprised how much extra time you feel like you have. It’s a small win and you’ll want to keep going once you get a taste.
Breath: The first thing I do most mornings is breath. If you’re like me and tend to wake up on the wrong side of the bed, this is huge. I definitely need some time to govern myself before I do anything else (especially dealing with other humans… seriously watch out people). I am a yogi so I have a few different breathing practices and techniques I use to start my day, but something as simple as even paced inhales and exhales is perfect. Taking a few moments to breath, wake up, move slow, and understand how I am feeling is really importatant. I am much more prepared to take on the day when I know what flavour of crazy I am dealing with (because let’s be honest, the crazy doesn’t go away). Not only that, it keeps me off of my phone and away from the external influences that can affect my mood.
Hydrate: After I breath I chug the heck out of some life juice… aka. coffee! Just kidding (kind of), water first, coffee second. We can all afford to drink more water, even if we already drink quite a bit. Get as much water in as soon as you can in case you forget later. Your body, brain, and literally everything will thank you. As a general rule, aim to drink half of your body weight in ounces every day (thank Rachel Hollis for this tip). For example, if you weigh 140lbs, drink 70oz of water. That’s easy math even for me. To make this goal easy try and drink a third of that (or more) first thing! Then go ahead and drink as much coffee as you want my friend.
Choose joy: Start your day with something you enjoy. When the first thing we do is wake up and rush to work (sometimes to a job we hate), or rush to take care of our family (who we love, but still need space from) we are setting ourselves up for that type of energy all day long. Instead, start with yourself and start with joy. Pick one thing or a few things that you know make you feel good, anything at all. In the morning I like to journal, read, listen to music, and/or move my body. These things help me move into my day with ease. I feel productive, clear, and free in my body. This doesn’t have to be a huge commitment either, 10 minutes is more than enough to get yourself started on the right note.
Now if only things were as easy to implement as they are to consider. Easier said than done right? The only way to really make a change is to just flipping do it and that is up to no one but us. That is truly the hard part. I would love to end everything I write with something inspirational, but I think the truth is better. If change and taking control of our lives was easy, no one would have any struggles. But as we know, that’s not real and life can be a big ol’ b****. Motivation doesn’t just show up especially when starting something new, it takes practice. If you want to change you are going to have to put in some work now that is different from what you’ve been doing. It’s that simple and complicated at the same time. Just remember us dreamers are by your side.
Oh and here is something inspirational: Crush your morning, crush your day, crush your week, crush your life!
- Brit Kish
Ps. If you have questions or comments please don’t hesitate to reach out. I would love to chat, hear what works for you, or share more about my routine. Find me on Instagram @britkish or @pure_living_yoga or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.