Please be slow and gentle
Inspired and efficient
Curious and kind
I’m already scared of the doing
I’m thinking about morning routines.
Specifically, how might I create an environment that would help me start the day feeling prepared, confident and motivated rather than drowning in the overwhelm and anxiousness I experience now. Many days after waking, I wish nothing more than to go back to sleep. I lie in bed petrified of the day ahead, willing myself into a thin dreamy fantasy that takes me away from the world and all its troubles, the mounting projects, competing engagements, and people who need my time. Sometimes I’m in this limbo for 10 minutes. When there’s a particularly challenging something, it’s more like an hour.
The covers are flipped only when the reality of my procrastination (and the anxiety it produces) overcomes my desire to escape. Interestingly, once I’m actually out of bed, all those dragons that held me hostage under my duvet, aren’t so fierce anymore. I see how I can simply put one foot in front of the other. This is usually the time that I say to myself, “Kelsey, you just need to get out of bed as soon as you wake up, then those scary thoughts wouldn’t materialize.”
But it’s so hard to see things clearly when you’re not fully conscious.
I’ve been doing this dance my entire life, and I’ve tried so many things to turn it around. I’ve placed my alarm clock on my dresser so I’m required to get out of bed to turn it off. I’ve used the Sleep Cycle app to track my REM cycles and determine the best time to go to bed so I can wake feeling energized. I’ve established a set of nurturing morning routines so I might actually look forward to getting out of bed.
These things have helped. I’m not sleeping in as late as I used to. But I’m still not where I want to be.
My fantasy morning looks like this:
6:30: Wake naturally, journal
7:30: Movement Meditation
My reality is this:
7:00: Wake naturally, lie in bed drifting in and out of sleep
8:10-8:15: Meditate adjusting duration to account for sleeping in
8:30: Movement meditation
8:40: Get ready for the day, drink matcha tea, check email
9:00: Write distracted by email, texts and Snap Chat
It’s not a terrible, but this schedule leaves me feeling rushed and behind when I sit down for my workday. Even when I do engage in practices that preserve sanity, I’m distracted by wondering if I’ve missed something, wanting to connect with friends and trying to banish feelings of loneliness. Because I do not wake earlier, feelings of guilt pervade my morning.
I long to start the day feeling powerful, inspired, creative and imbued with exciting ‘what ifs?’ I long to peacefully come to my body and writing practices. I live for these things. I thrive with this these. Starting my day in this way helps me begin on solid ground. I’m more prepared to face the challenges of my world and the bad news that keeps rolling like ticker tape coloring everything with fear and anxiety.
Mornings are a sacred, special time. The brain is fresh. We’re the most open to creative possibilities. In this quiet time, we can sense our inner world and discover our deepest questions and life’s possibilities.
How can I realize this when the clock strikes 7 a.m., I’m adrift in a sea of blankets and the idea of removing myself seems laughable?
I don’t have the answers, so I’m asking you.
What is your morning routine? Do you face morning dragons? How do you slay them? How do you connect to inspiration?