Letter #179: Morning Lover

March 28, 2011

Dear early mornings,

You’re not always my favorite time of day, but I’m learning to appreciate you greatly. I haven’t figured out if it’s a genuine liking or if I’m just to the point in life where I’m required to like you to be successful in life! Either way, I’m learning, but I’m also being proactive in coming to like you.

I didn’t wake up at 7 a.m. instead of 10 a.m because I graduated college. It didn’t just become natural for me to be eating breakfast at 6:45 and at work by 7:30 or 8 rather than scampering to class on an empty stomach because I woke up too late to stop by Kappa Delta’s breakfast buffet.

The truth of the matter is I have to fight to enjoy you. I haven’t developed, and hopefully never will, Papa Roth’s gene of waking at 5 a.m. naturally. I’m a hard sleeper. Natural disasters don’t phase me…my Big in college thought she was going to have to carry me when a tornado nearly hit Stillwater! I probably sleep soundly to a fault, but I’m also super thankful for it. The hard sleeping doesn’t just cease when the alarm goes off either. Turning off my alarm without ever realizing it has been an issue as well. So, I’ve acknowledged my faults and vowed to get better.

A year and a half ago, I implemented 5:30 club into my life. For an entire semester at the Institute my friend, Laine, and I were in the gym every weekday morning at 5:35 with our alarms ringing at 5:30. I realized first semester I was being a terrible steward of my time and resolved to be better. Things I valued were slipping such as working out and time in the Word, and my method of combat was utilizing you more efficiently. I’m currently not waking up in the 5 a.m. category, but this semester revolutionized my life.

This lifestyle didn’t come easy. I loved hanging out with friends or working on projects into wee hours, but I heard a phrase that clicked with me, and I’ll carry it with me forever. “Being disciplined in the morning starts by being disciplined at night.” To this day, I must proactively choose to go to bed at a reasonable time if I want to rise easily in the morning. I’ve realized I’m WAY more productive in the morning, and my time at night seems to be much more frivolous. I may miss out on things occasionally and there are definitely times it’s worth staying up and being exhausted the next morning, but overall it’s worth it to me.

So, I’m learning to enjoy you more as well as becoming more disciplined in another area in my life. Is getting out of bed the easiest thing in the world? Of course not, especially when it’s cold! But, the productivity achieved during you is worth it to me! Try it out. Plus, here’s two other keys to my success: 1) I put my phone across the room so I have to get out of bed to turn off my alarm. 2) Sometimes when I’m lying in bed and have to pee, I just fall asleep so it forces me to get out of bed at my first alarm!

Proactively choosing to be good at you,

Practicer of all sorts of disciplines

***Couldn’t resist this picture, and it’s from a blog with pretty good insight on this topic. Brain Wads by Drew Haskin

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