Back when this blog was “embrace-refrain”, I attempted to embrace getting up earlier than normal for one month. If I remember correctly, I didn’t do so well. I had a few victories, but getting up early on a regular basis has always eluded me, unless I HAVE to be up early. If I have an appointment, a meeting, or I need to be somewhere; getting up is no problem. But when it is “voluntary”; to just get up and get a few extra things done or have some peace and quiet before the day starts… well, I haven’t been so successful at that.
But, what the heck… I might as well try again. As I get older, I see more and more value in getting up early. That hasn’t made it happen of course, but since I see an increasing value there, I am going to give it another shot. I simply don’t have the energy anymore to stay up late and be productive. It’s not so much that my energy has diminished, I just spend more of it during the day, and I am spent by the time 9pm rolls around. And, with a family of 5 it is harder and harder to find some peace and quiet during the day. The only consistent time I have for some extra productivity and some time to be still is in the morning. It hasn’t always been this way, but life changes…
My previous attempts to voluntarily get up earlier than I need to have typically been an all or nothing approach. I figured that once I got in the habit of getting up early, I would get used to it and after awhile it would become my normal routine. So when I tried to do this, I would try for 6am EVERY DAY, or something like that. The problem is, that I still have things in my life that keep me out and up late on certain days. I have regular events on Monday and Wednesday that keep me out later than on other weekdays. I rarely get to bed early on those nights. The weekend is often time to hang out with friends, watch movies… etc, so I don’t typically even try to go to bed early then. The simple fact is: staying up late makes it incredibly difficult to get up early!
So… if I am going to have any success getting up earlier than I need to on a regular basis, I am either going to have to change some of my evening routines, or maybe try a less than all-or-nothing approach. Since I like my evening routines, I am going to shoot for the latter. Over the next few weeks, I am aiming to get up early 3 days a week. I am hoping that I can pull this off on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. I am also going to try to get up a little earlier on Tuesday and Saturday, but not drastically. Sunday… I’m sleeping in.
The goal for me is simple: I’d like to create space each week for 5-6 hours of work, and 3-4 times of solitude, reading, and quiet (20-30 minutes). I started this morning by getting up about 40 minutes earlier than normal. I didn’t get any work done, but I was able to just take my morning much slower and enjoy my breakfast and coffee before the kids got up. I don’t know if I’d call that solitude, but it was certainly better than rushing around while trying to help get my kids off to school.