June 2: #10: Wake up an hour earlier than you normally would.
June 3, 2017
Phil: This one means something completely different for me than it does to Bruce, mainly because of our drastically different schedules. Being that I work Friday to Tuesday and start my shift around 3 p.m., waking up early is never really in my wheelhouse to begin with. I woke up this morning at 9 a.m. instead of my usual 10:30-11 a.m. While the time difference was not huge, the impact was still felt. By giving myself that extra hour, or at least by perceiving my morning as having an extra hour, I was able to really dive into the things I know I enjoy doing on a busy morning before work. I got to really kick back with a pot of coffee, read a little bit, meditate and enjoy some extra peace of mind. I wasn’t in my usual “go go go” morning routine and more kind of going with the flow. I was a little tired to wake up at 9 a.m. (gasp!) instead of 10 a.m., but that tiredness shook off rather quickly and made way for more opportunity. There’s totally value to sleeping in late, and being lazy sometimes and letting yourself just kick it in bed. But I need to remind myself that sometimes, the little sacrifice of getting up a touch earlier can do wonders for the rest of your day. I almost forgot -- before this job, I had a regular 9-5 and was well into a routine of waking up an extra hour early for work every morning for this very reason. I noticed an increased mood at work and kept that going until changing jobs last year. This challenge reminded me of why I did that, and how easy it really was.
Bruce: I have always had an oppositional relationship with sleep. It appeared that my grandfather, who I idolized, never slept. He would stay up late with us then wake up to train at the gym before the sunrise and then head to work early each day. I always saw this epic mythically tireless lifestyle as an ideal and I still frantically feel that sleep is a huge waste of time (although hugely important of course, I just wish we didn't have to do it!) Growing up, I took pride in always being the first person up in my house. The last five years I've probably gotten an average of five hours of sleep a night. I recently changed jobs and I have been "sleeping in" more because I've been staying up later and I miss having the mornings to myself. Despite planning on waking up an actual two or three hours earlier than my normal 9/10 o'clock Rising time lately I went to sleep around 4 AM and woke up at 7AM, groggily. I have always had the strange ability to be almost immediately on point, "0 to 60" right after rising no matter how many hours of sleep I'd gotten. Sadly, as I'm nearing my 30's, I'm certainly finding that indefatigable superhuman nature attenuating! Waking up with nearly no sleep was admittedly a little rough at first but I threw my gym clothes on, grabbed a drink and was in and out of the gym by 8:30, grabbed a breakfast sandwich I rarely ever have time for. I was able to read. I felt like I'd cheated time having the mornings back. My town was calm and quiet and mostly free of typical late morning errand-running hustle and bustle and even standing outside on my porch hearing no cars presented a lot of solace. Although I didn't do any creative work during this time I did find myself wondering if all of that isolated work free from distraction would be a good work time as I used to and have intended many mornings. I definitely recommend this and certainly plan on endeavoring to reassert my schedule as a productive morning dweller, just next time maybe I will go to sleep at a reasonable time!
Tomorrow's challenge: #13: Make a small donation to a charity of your choosing