Good morning. Or just hello, if you’re reading this anytime other than morning. But for me, it’s morning. Hopeful, quiet, perfect morning. This time of the day didn’t always feel so wonderful to me. In fact, for a good chunk of my life, I’ve slept through this thing called “morning”. As a self-proclaimed Night Owl, all through my 20s there was no way I’d pull myself out of bed before 11am. Then again, I didn’t get INTO bed until 2am or after.
I was alive in the evenings, but the spark of energy was just my brain spinning from the momentum of the day… It wasn’t productive energy. It was just the chemicals in my body unable to wind down. After a long day, my brain was tired, but wouldn’t shut off because I’d conditioned it not to. I’d told myself that evenings were ‘ ME TIME ’, and I never wanted them to end.
Back then, mornings felt sluggish. And it didn’t help that I was battling some extreme gluten sensitivities, (watch my video story on Gluten-Sensitivity here), but mornings were also sluggish because I was pushing my already-tired brain too hard.
That was then. Now, these past 3 years, my perspective has changed. It wasn’t by choice – not at first – it was because my infant was an early riser. Slowly, my body started getting used to waking up early too. At first, it was all about the baby, but eventually she started Day Care and suddenly there was this chunk of time laid out before me. And my brain… it was so clear. No longer groggy, or spacey, but active and bright.
I’ve since grown to love mornings and the peace it brings to my day. Sure, sometimes they’re hectic, but more often they’re therapeutic. (at least after we get the kiddo to school). 😉
I now understand something that was once quite puzzling. The importance of alone time in the morning. Let me explain:
3 reasons Me Time in the morning is so important
1. The morning sets the tone for the day
It’s a classic case of the Turtle and the Hare. If you start your day going 200%, you’ll burn out by noon. But if you take a moment to breathe, observe the weather, sip tea or coffee, and just think… You might find your mood elevated. Perhaps there’s time in there to read, chat with your significant other, or even make a list.
Maybe you’re the type to go for a run to clear your head. (that’s not me, but it sure sounds nice!). The point is, if your morning is paced calmly, your mood will improve. And when your feeling good this early, the rest of your day just got a boost too.
I don’t run in the mornings, but laying on the hammock sure gives a relaxing view of the trees.
2. You can set your priorities
If you don’t take a moment in the morning for yourself, you may find you’ve put your personal wellbeing on the back burner for the entirety of the day. Jumping right into ‘work mode’ without a little ‘ me time ‘ can also become reactionary. One task, leads to another, to another, to another… Before you know it, it’s bedtime.
But if you take a moment in the morning to set priorities, for both yourself AND your workself, you may find your day more focused (and more enjoyable).
3. Decision Fatigue
Speaking of focus/priorities, what happens when you’ve got a LOT on your plate for one day? If you don’t prioritize properly and set realistic expectations for the day, you may find yourself overbooked. Too often, we don’t realize we’re overbooked and we just try to do it all. This can lead to decision fatigue and poor performance.
Your brain is functioning at its highest capacity in the morning. Every little decision you make from the moment you wake up eats away at your decision-making abilities. What will I wear? What will I eat? What route will I take to work? And once you start your workday, the decisions just get more complicated. By the time you have your ‘alone time’ in the evening, your brain is tired. It doesn’t want to think. It wants to rest.
Why give the best part of your brain to anyone other than yourself or your family? By taking ME time in the morning, rather than the evening, you’re declaring to yourself, “I am important. My health, my family, my wellbeing IS important.”
(You can watch my video on decision fatigue as it relates to my decluttering and minimalism journey here).
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