Friday, July 10, 2009

Project 18 - Morning Routines

My morning routine (or lack-thereof) has really been biting me in the butt this week. I used to be such a morning person - getting out of bed at the crack of dawn to workout, starting the day early with loads of energy, and still being able to stay up through to the wee hours of the morning. And seriously? It's only been two years, but I've apparently become well settled into "old lady"-dom. It's ridiculous!

Basically, I stopped having a morning routine when winter came around, and now my lack of routine has turned into a routine in and of itself - and not a good (or helpful) one! A typical morning for me these days looks something like this:
  • 7AM - Matt gets up, I rearrange myself so I take up the entire bed, and fall back asleep
  • 7:30AM - Matt wakes me up to tell me he's leaving, I debate whether or not to get out of bed
  • 7:45AM - I bite the bullet and drag myself to the bathroom to brush my teeth/put in contacts
  • 7:50AM - Still not awake, I decide to forgo a shower and check blogs/watch the morning news instead
  • 8:05AM - I decide that I can still make the 8:06 bus, and sprint to the bedroom to get dressed
  • 8:06AM - The bus goes by, and since I still don't have pants on, I decide it's time for a nap
  • 8:15AM - Finish getting dressed and put make-up on
  • 8:20AM - Start packing lunch for the day
  • 8:29AM - Begin the frantic search for enough quarters to get the 8:36 bus
  • 8:34AM - Sprint out to the bus stop, praying I'll make the bus the whole way
  • 8:36AM - Either get on the bus, or watch it roll past me (in which case, I will have to walk the 1.75-ish miles to work) - more often than not this week it's been the latter.
  • 8:45AM - If I caught the bus, roll into the office; if I didn't, lament about how I should be to work by now while still being far away, and on foot.
See what I mean? Not a great way to start the day. Especially when the rest of your coworkers show up at 8AM and schedule 8:30AM meetings that you're constantly being late to.

A little bit of blog research has shown me that morning routines are a pretty popular topic in blog-land, and that everyone likes to wake up in the 5am hour (good lord, really?). While my before-6AM-wakeup days are over for sure, it seems like everyone accomplishes a lot more in their mornings than I do - working out, fixing food, actually eating breakfast, and showering (ugh, I know). It'd nice to be able to do all (okay, maybe at least two?) of these things during my mornings as well.

So this is it. I'm giving myself a month. What is today, July 10th? August 10th it is. I am going to change my morning routine (for the better!) by August 10th. My tangible measurements of this change will be arriving at work before 8:30 and showering in the mornings (can you tell I'm really hung up on the fact that I don't do this anymore? Because i am).

Resources: There's a great article on Zen Habits entitled How I Became an Early Riser that outlines a gradual progression into morning activeness. Unclutterer also wrote an article a while ago called Streamlining Your Morning Routine to help you figure out where you're wasting time. And The Simple Dollar has an awesome article about starting new habits that should be pretty helpful. More productive morning, here I come!

1 comment:

ShockTheBourgeois said...

I'm so excited that you posted about this, because... I've done it! (Almost!) I am becoming a morning person!

You know me. I was always late to class, rarely ate breakfast, survived only on caffeine.

But, when Adam and I joined the gym I was frustrated by how it screwed up my schedule- I hated working out in the evenings and having to shower at night. I decided that if I was ever going to make the most of the gym membership, I would have to work out in the mornings. And since I have to be at work before 8:00... that would mean leaving the gym at 7:40. And since I take about 40 minutes to get showered, dressed and ready... I would have to stop working out at 7:00. Which of course would require getting to the gym at 6:00 to have a decent workout.

As hellish as that sounds, I'm actually doing it- and I feel amazing. Today I was too sick to work out, but I still got up early. I found myself baking bread at 7:00 and taking a nice shower- and getting to work 10 minutes early. Surprisingly, I've been feeling energetic all day, drinking only one cup of coffee, and being wayyyyy more productive in the evenings. Instead of feeling exhausted after work and watching TV, we've been going for an evening walk, cooking a real dinner, blogging, reading... it's incredible.

So, sorry that this has been such a monster comment- had to share. Let me know how your routine works out!