I’m back from vacation! I spent an entire month unplugged…well, mostly. I very consciously took a step away from my normal day to day so that I could free up some mental space for my new Highly Sensitive Endeavor. I started this blog a few months ago, but I’m in the process of getting a new website together and birthing a new business to serve other Highly Sensitive People and it’s thrilling! And terrifying! And thrilling! It should be rolling out in the next month or so.
Anyhoo, during my “down time,” I decided to see what life would be like if I fully embraced the non-routine. It was not pretty. You see, over the past few years, I have implemented the most amazing, wonderful, luxurious morning routine. I love it. I go to bed excited to wake up and do it. Does this sound crazy to you? Don’t worry. I’m actually fairly normal. (I think!) So what happened when I gave up my routine? I was cranky, anxious, ungrounded and generally unhappy. I kept trying to figure out what was wrong with me – after all, I was on vacation! Then it occurred to me that perhaps it was because I had abandoned my morning routine. Sure enough, within a day of starting it again, I was calmer, happier, much less anxious and my monkey mind had mostly shut up.
I was not always excited for the alarm to go off. I used to dread the idea of waking up one second earlier than I absolutely had to. However, life challenges and hitting rock bottom will often push us where we are sometimes unwilling to go. I was pretty much forced into creating a morning routine. A few years ago, I experienced one of the hardest winters of my life. I have SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) and it went unchecked for years. I was diagnosed when I was in college and my doctor told me about light therapy and how it would help ease my depression. I literally had a solution in my hands, but I was very unwilling to wake up early to sit in front of the light box my doctor recommended. This was the light box that was going to help alleviate my depression, but I just couldn’t fathom the thought of waking up to actually do it. However, a few years ago, my depression got so bad and I decided I never wanted to go through that again. I vowed that I would make the effort to wake up a little bit earlier and do my light therapy. The challenge was on!
That was the beginning of my love affair with the morning. I can confidently say that creating and implementing a morning routine has been one of the most effective things I’ve ever done. First, let’s go over why it’s so amazing:
- It sets you up for the day: Very often, we roll right out of bed and directly into our frenzied schedule. Creating some space first thing in the morning allows us to mentally prepare for what’s ahead. I often recommend setting an intention for the day of how you want to feel, what you want to accomplish and how you want to go through your day. Creating a strong intention first thing in the morning helps you get focused for the day. Remember my favorite saying? “What you focus on grows.” When you start your day with focus and intention, you are more likely to accomplish the things you actually want to accomplish.
- You get to be gloriously alone: HSP’s need a lot of alone time. For many of us, this can be hard to come by, especially if you are in the midst of raising a family. Over the past few years, my days have become more and more cluttered with activity, and I have had less and less time to myself. I was surprised to find that the time I spent by myself in the morning was some of the happiest of my day. There were no distractions, the house was blissfully quiet, and I got to do whatever I wanted to do! I answered to no one but myself.
- You’ll be happier: If you find the right formula of activities for you, you’ll be a much happier person once you’ve had a good dose of morning time. Ideally, this time will nourish you, raise your energy, get your vibration humming at a higher frequency and generally make you feel really, really happy. I can’t tell you what a difference it makes for my family when I’ve implemented my morning routine. By the time everyone else wakes up, I’m wide awake, in a great mood, and I’ve accomplished a lot! On days when I miss it, they get a groggy, cranky, sleepy Cortney who is a bit frustrated that I missed out on my morning time.
So what should you do in the morning? How much time do you need? How the heck will you get up? I’ll get to that in Part 2 of this post, so please stay tuned! (Here is PART 2!)
Tune in here for my video:
With so much love,