I'd love to hear about morning routines. I just changed mine a bit. I am getting up at 4:30 to exercise and enjoy some coffee before I shower for work. For example, today I was awake for almost 4 hours before I left for work... I feel productive but I struggle with what to do on the weekends. Go to bed early? Try to have a bit of a life by staying up? What time should I wake up?
I am not sure that my routine is exactly what you are looking for. . .but I'll share it, in case any part of it resonates with you. Per Ayurvedic practices, I scrape my tongue and drink hot lemon water to. . . um . . . get things moving. :-) I also take a probitic every morning and wait 30 minutes to eat. I'd eventually like to see my regular morning routine extend into a short physical asana (yoga) practice and short-ish meditation session, as well. I bike to work and then eat breakfast . . . and off goes the day. Per your question about staying up and getting up times and sleep . . . Ayurveda (the sister science of yoga) says clearly that you should rise and sleep with nature's cycles - which is a bit challenging, especially in Holland in Dec when it is only light from 9:30-4:00 (seriously). BUT what that means in practical practice for ME is lights out at 10 (in bed by 9:30) and up daily at 6:00. On the weekends, I let my body sleep as long as it needs to. I'll be interested i others' answers too!
I am curious about others routine's too. I have come to the conclusion that waking up when my kids are calling my name is not ideal for me -- I start the day unhappy and tired. My goal is to get up by 6 to exercise, eat and shower before my kids are up. I know that probably seems late to some, but I am not a morning person. Now that I have started my own business it has been harder to get to the gym at night so I have to make this change. I have been reading a lot about the art of waking up, but I am struggling! I try to be lights out by 11, which may just be too late for me. It's hard when I want to work and actually spend some time with my husband.
I would be curious to hear what the PN pros say about this one! I am an uber morning person and have been doing 6am workouts for years. Recently, I was told that I was getting up too early and not allowing important hormone production (?) to take place - I wasn't getting enough sleep. Usually in bed around 10:30pm and rising around 5am. Now I'm trying to get a work in a bit later in the day and sleep until 6am. After waking I'm going to try to add in 5 minutes of meditation and then enjoy a healthy breakfast - while checking the PN discussion boards! I find that that practice alone sets the tone for my day and forces me to sit and eat - instead of multi tasking.
I'd love to add some meditation. I do yoga most days but do not specifically meditate. SusRob, Tell me more about the hormone production thing... I go to bed by 9 to 9:30 most nights and am up by 4:30 or 5. Was it the amount of sleep or the time? I love to hear about what others are doing. I need to add lemon water to the routine but haven't gotten there yet, either. Do you all get everything ready the night before?
GeorgeandAnn - I think it's the amount of sleep, not the timing. I'd love to hear what the PN experts have to say about this one, esp the hormone production while sleeping? Also, in the last PN program I participated in, someone suggested the following for meditation: "If meditation seems inaccessible to anyone, I've been there and I want to plug an app called Stop, Breathe & Think. It has been a game changer for me. Also, don't think you need to meditate for 20 or even 10 minutes to get benefits. I love to fit in 10 but even 5 a day has proven to be extremely worthwhile to me, and I can't rationalize my way out of something that only takes 5 minutes! :)" I'm going to give it a try!
I had bad insomnia and worked with a sleep specialist. I learned a lot about sleep hygiene that was helpful. You really throw off your sleep schedule if you stay up or sleep in later than 1 hour. It can almost make you feel jet lagged when you return to your normal schedule on week days or make it hard to fall asleep at your regular time. If you don't have problems falling or staying asleep you can take a 20 min. power nap during the afternoon.
I slept until 8 today, which is about 3 or so hours different from my regular weekday wake up. I agree that 5 minutes is doable. I guess I need that app! I also listened to 10% Happier (Audible) and it makes meditation more accessible. Thank you for all of the helpful feedback!
I also get up very early - 4:00 to 4:30 am daily, and lights are out by 9:00 pm the latest (although I really need 8-9 hours of sleep...). I am a morning person by nature (as opposed to my husband) and this is the routine that we've found works best for our family - although I'm not convinced it works best for me. I think sleeping until 5:00 or 5:30 could be a better option... I don't change my sleep habits on the weekends, as the early hours before everyone else is up is the time when I can get stuff done (like checking into this discussion board, for example). This also allows me get to work by 6:00 am, so that I can get some serious work accomplished before people start coming into my office. The early hours also allow me to get my work hours in and still pick my kids up right after school. So, from a productivity stand-point, getting up this early is necessary. From a wellness standpoint, I'm not so sure... I too, would love to hear about hormone production and sleep, as I've often wondered if getting up this early is actually counter-productive.
Mary - your post is so inspirational! I'm on the final leg of childrearing and I do wonder what the "empty nest" life will be like. Especially like finally having some time to play the piano or similar - ideas for personal growth that I've been toying with for years. Thanks for your thoughts!
Following along here. I have two little girls and understand that waking up before them would really help add some structure and give me some time to myself, but I struggle to wake up to an alarm too. In my perfect morning, I'd wake up, drink my warm lemon water, oil pull, tongue scrape, and do a little bit of meditation and asana practice. Most mornings, my kids wake me up and it's go go go, get everyone fed and dressed, etc. I'm inspired by all your morning routines. Maybe I just need to bite the bullet and set an alarm. I've heard that waking up 15 minutes earlier and gradually scaling back can be a good way to go. I think the problem might be that I normally wake up about 7 or 7:30 and then I set an alarm for 5:30 and it feels like a shock to my system!
Jessica -- I'm in the same boat. I normally am up between 7-730 when the kids wake me and it is go-go-go from there. It would be great to enjoy the quiet, but like you I'm always an all or nothing person so when I set my alarm super early I just give up when it doesn't happen for me.
Jessica, I didn't think my body would naturally wake me up at 4:30 or 5 but it is starting to happen more and more. I find myself waking before the alarm at least one day per week. (The alarm is necessary for me or I would wake up every few hours with anxiety about not waking up... : ) The key for me is going to bed on time. I aim to get between 7 and 8 hours of sleep because it just makes me a better person. On less sleep, I get cranky and short with my family and have internal dialogue complaining about a litany of items. Anyway, this was a long way for me to say, maybe just try it. To ease in, you could try 6:30 to see if that helps make your mornings less crazy. I also set out my son's clothes and pack all of his various bags for the week on Sunday. Oh, how that helps! I read the Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod about 2 years ago and signed up for the challenge, which provided support. Best of luck!!
GeorgeandAnn, Thanks for your tips and motivation :) How long have you been waking up that early?
Jessica, I just pushed it to 4:30 about 2 months ago, but I have been shooting for varying times (anywhere from 4:45 - 5:30) for 2 years. My son is four, so before that I was focused more on sleep and also worked from home 2 - 3 days a week. Going to the office every day has changed everything! I finally just settled on 4:30 because it builds in time for reading, coffee, and exercise. My day is just better, although I am ready for bed by 8! I find that I sleep more soundly, too, but I think the PN lifestyle has something to do with that. : ) Mary, Would you recommend that book for non-empty nesters? It sounds like a great way to connect with things that make you happy!
Mary - thank you SO much for taking the time to pass along the info regarding the Passion Test. I am definitely going to give it a try. Your generosity in sharing made my day!
Thank you, Mary! : )