My Un-filtered (& un-perfect) Morning Routine
Rise and shine. It is 7.15am on a Wednesday morning, I have just got back from a morning walk around the local reserve. The air was fresh and my mind is clear therefor I felt inspired to share write.
Who’s herd of morning routines? Duh, everyone. Not having a morning routine seems to be a crime these days, it is the equivalent of walking into a bar and not ordering a gin and tonic… seriously, get with the times sister!!! Jokes aside though, the media, books and online blogs are selling us dreams of waking up early to change our life; granted it could/can/might/will work. If you wake up earlier than normal and put in the effort you will get more done, just like if you stay up later and put in the effort you will get more done. It quite frankly isn’t rocket since.
In February, I finished reading ‘The 5am Club’ by Robin Sharma. The book outlines the principles of owning your mornings in order to elevate your life. Initially when I ordered this book I was a little skeptical as to why an earth I would want to get up at 5am but I was so very intrigued and optimistic about the principle. However from chapter 1 I was hooked; I read it before bed, before work in the morning, on my lunch hour, when in the car as a passenger, basically whenever I had a free minute. I constantly wanted to know more and more about the teachings and even began to write notes and highlight specific paragraphs. It was at this point I realised this book was going to become some what of a life bible to me. Without giving away too much, the book is based on the principle of (you guessed it) waking up at 5am and committing to 1 hour of personal development before sunrise. At this time in the morning life is still, you have no distractions and your ambition is surprisingly sky high. The 5am (or a time of your choice) morning routine forms over 3 blocks of 22 day periods called (1) deconstruction, (2) installation and (3) integration. The book outlines it takes approximately 66 days to install this routine as a habits and for it to become first instinct. The book explores a lot more than just this principle alone, but if i share too much you wouldn’t need to read the book, and i wouldn’t deprive any of you of that. By joining the 5am club, you take the first step into a extraordinary, life changing your pathway.
As you can see I was absolute sold on changing my life, creating new habits and excelling in all area’s of my life. So one evening I set my alarm clock, and to sleep I went. I woke up the next day a 4.55am ready to live the dream life of an entrepreneur who gives a shit about self-care. The routine followed something like this..
4.55am. Large glass of water
5am-5.20am: any form of exercise (basically things moving & get a sweat on)
5.30 - 5.50am: Journalling (including intention setting and affirmations)
5.50am - 6am: More water, and deep breathing.
I can honestly say I failed to reach 66 days - I was burnt out after 3 weeks. I believed I was thriving because the media told me that was the case, however I was actually stressed, over-tired, and missing out on being present. For example I on average spend 1 night a week with my partner, and rather than spend the morning waking up together, I would dart out of bed at 4.55am and leave him to sleep (which would make me feel super guilty and like all my priorities were jumbled). Anyway, I soon realised the idea of this morning routine was a lot less rewarding then it was made out to be; I don’t like to use the term quitting, so lets say I handed my resignation in and decided to listen to what my body was telling me over my new book.
I learned to forgive myself when I snoozed my alarm, or missed a morning workout, where things change and my mornings don’t go to plan. Implementing a sustainable routine is amazing and once you really get involved it can improve your day to day routine, but the KEY is making achievable and effective for you.
Fast forward 3 months, I now rise around 6.30am naturally. I spend 5 minutes (in bed) practicing tummy breathing, following by washing my face & brushing my teeth, having a large glass of water and then going on a walk (I will add here I usually just throw on a hoody over my pj top with some leggings). This can range anywhere from 10 minutes to 1 hour - I don’t implement a time for this or a length, I just allow each morning to take it’s own course. When i return home from my walk I write down 3 affirmations of the week which I am focusing on.
I follow to same structure but everyday is guided by the present moments which has given me a great sense of trust and guidance. I am true to my present self every-morning, which including hitting snooze on my body clock and sometimes even having breakfast in bed. Listen to your bodies alarm clock, listen to it’s movement cue’s and take time to be present in the early hours - how you begin your day will effect the rest of your day so rise with a sense of peace and trust.
The most important advice for beginning a morning routine is ‘less is truly more’.