Exactly a month ago I decided my routine wasn’t working for me anymore.
I’m a night owl, always have been. It’s not like I stay up till 3am watching Real Housewives (well, sometimes I do, but that’s not the point), it’s more that my brain comes ALIVE at night. That’s when I’m my most creative. My best business ideas for Brains over Blonde all came to me in the wee hours of the morning.
One of the pros of being a flower child entrepreneur is that you can make your own schedule, which is brilliant for people like me who are wired a lil differently. Is anyone else like that? There are lots of studies that show that some humans have different circadian clocks (meaning they sleep at different hours of the day or need more or less sleep). I’m def one of them.
What sucks is that our society praises early birds and shames anyone who “sleeps in.” That’s always bothered me. Just because I like to sleep in doesn’t mean I’m lazy… I assure you, I’m not. I just have my own unique rhythm, k?
I’ve tried to become an early bird so many times in the past. Every time, I’ve failed. So when I became an entrepreneur, I was like fuck it, Imma do me.
For the first year, I was still living with my ex. He’s one of those early birds who only needs 6hrs of sleep & loves getting up early. His routine prevented from my own getting toooo off of how the rest of the world operates.
After I called off my wedding and started living alone for the first time, I truly got to make my own schedule. Play by my rules. It was awesome. Left to my own devices, my schedule gotta a lil extreme and I started to feel like it was no longer serving me.
So a month ago on a Sunday night (well, I guess technically it was 4am on a Monday morning…) after spending hours getting shit done in my creative sanctuary, I serendipitously saw a post on Insta, right before I was about to follow asleep.
It wasn’t even that cool of a post, per se. It was one of those cheesy quote posts you’ve seen a million times. It said something along the lines of, “the most productive thing you can do for your business is to get up earlier.” For whatever reason (I say, synchronicity), it caught me at the right time and I decided in that very moment to set my alarm for 7am.
In that moment, I made a commitment to myself to get up* at 7am every day for a week. You can do ANYTHING for one week.
*notice that I didn’t say I’d “try” to start waking up at 7am, I just decided to DO it. When we say we’re going to “try” to do something, we’re already giving ourselves an out. We’re prompting our brain to fail. Remember, the words you tell yourself RLY matter!
I also decided to share my lil self challenge with all of you. I’ll admit, I really didn’t want to. I was afraid I’d fail (just as I had on all my previous attempts to become an early riser), and all of you would see it. But then I realized, that’s EXACTLY why I needed to share it.
I got up at 7am every day for a week and some remarkable things happened
I got up at 7am every day for a week and some remarkable things happened.
- I actually started feeling more awake than I usually do in the mornings when I wake up later.
- I had more time for my morning routine, which we know I love. I wasn’t stressed rushing through it. I could enjoy my sole water and coffee at a leisurely pace and write out my intentions for the day with ease.
- I hate to admit it, but I was more productive. It’s so nice feeling like you’ve already gotten shit done while everyone else is sleeping, ya know?
- I worked out every day. By the afternoon, I felt “ahead” of schedule, so I always had time to fit it in.
- I started getting tired earlier and falling asleep faster. You might be thinking *duh* – that isn’t that remarkable. But it was for me, k? One night I actually went to bed at 9:30pm.
To be honest, these benefits were kinda to my own dismay. I still HATE getting up early. I’m never going to be one of those ppl who wake up bright eyed and bushy tailed like Cinderella, birds chirping and shit. EVERY SINGLE MORNING I have to drag myself out of bed. Here are a few things that helped…
tips for getting up earlier
- Set your alarm to a new sound. I set my alarm to a new sound (“Birds,” if you have an iPhone). This signaled a “fresh start” of a new routine when I heard it in the mornings. I also just like that sound bc it makes me feel one with nature, ya know?
- Take snooze off the table. Snoozing is a slippery slope, so I just eliminated it as an option. All it does is make you fall back asleep, mess up your sleep cycle, and get more tired in the end.
- Have a wind-down routine. Signal your bed it’s time to sleep with a ritual. I like to do a bubble bath. Facemasks, candles, meditation, stretching, and reading are all nice options too. Whatever it is – make sure no blue light (electronics) are involved – that’ll just keep you up!
- Go to bed at the same time every night. It’s annoying but it works. If you have the iPhone, use the “Bedtime” feature to alert you when to go to sleep every night so you can keep the same schedule every day! It’s my new fave feature.
- Make your bed in the morning. This is a small “win” that will set you up for success and feel more confident going forward with the rest of your day. (more on this here)
LIGHT, HYDRATE, MOVEMENT
Once you’re up, use the LIGHT, HYDRATE, MOVEMENT method. I learned this from Aubrey Marcus (he’s the one that also got me drinking sole water – highly recommend).
We need light, hydration, & movement FIRST THING in the mornings to reset our circadian rhythm. If you think about it from an evolutionary perspective, this makes perfect sense.
So after I make my bed, I open my blinds (LIGHT). Then, I make my sole water (HYDRATE) and drink it on my balcony in the sun (LIGHT) or take it to-go for a little beach walk (LIGHT & MOVEMENT). Sometimes I go to a yoga class first thing or do a mini yoga sesh at home (MOVEMENT).
This shit rly works, I’m telling you.
you can do anything for a week, which is why i commit to getting up early in one-week increments
So after a week, I kinda liked it. I decided to commit to another week. Again, you can do anything for a week, which is why I commit to myself in one-week increments.
But here’s the catch – once I commit, getting up at 7am is NOT OPTIONAL.
Because every time you make an appointment with yourself & you don’t honor it, you weaken your confidence because you train your brain that you can’t trust yourself. On the other hand, when you make a commitment to yourself and honor it, you train your brain to learn that you can trust yourself – and that’s what breeds CONFIDENCE!
when you make a commitment to yourself and honor it, you train your brain to learn that you can trust yourself – and that’s what breeds CONFIDENCE!
The most important promises we make are the little ones we make silently to ourselves when no one is watching.
Waking up early started to feel awesome because I made a promise to myself and I honored my word. That follow through allows me to TRUST MYSELF, & trusting yourself is the KEY to strengthening your self-image & self-confidence.
Every time you make an agreement with yourself, no matter how small, follow through with it. When you do this consistently, you reinforce to yourself that you are someone who executes & wins & delivers on her commitments!!!
It’s SUPER easy to hack this phenomenon & use it to your advantage. If you set yourself up for a win first thing in the morning, you’ll see yourself as a winner & feel empowered ALL DAY. It can be something as tiny as making the bed in the morning or taking an ice cold shower! The key is once you make that agreement with yourself, you HAVE to follow through. If you don’t, it works in reverse: you’ll see yourself as someone who doesn’t follow through on her commitments, which causes your self-confidence to plummet.
LET’S TRY IT TOGETHER FAM
What small promise do you want to make to yourself this week? Share it below & if you need help building confidence, let me know, I’m here for ya as always.