The key to awesomeness is getting your arse out of bed. I know, I know, it’s warm in there. Hell, if you’re lucky there might be someone to snuggle. Leave them there and get up early to get it done.
One of the best things I have ever done for myself is getting up early. Not five minutes early, but an hour or more, long before I need to. It’s like a video game code that unlocks extra playtime.
We all have goals and wishes that there doesn’t seem to be time for. There is. The time is in the morning. Do them first.
Me, I like to lift weights. So twice a week I’m up at five thirty and lifting heavy fucking objects. One of them is on Sunday, it’s my favourite because it’s deadlift day. Lifting over twice your bodyweight before the sun is up is one of my life’s greatest joys. I’ve crushed Sunday long before most people are even up.
I also like to write. For years I made half arsed attempts and a regular schedule. Now, on the days I’m not lifting I write. I’m writing this right now at quarter past six on a rainy Melbourne morning in November.
That meditation practice you’ve been meaning to start? I do that first thing. Roll out of bed, tiptoe down the hall, creak the lounge door open, ignore the cats, sit down and count my breaths. I am certain that meditation has kept stress and madness at bay over the last two years.
By 7 am, when my little boy is waking up, I’m ahead. I’ve done what I need to do for myself for that day. Everything else can now be about my family or business.
You can’t get sidetracked or derailed by the days events. You don’t miss that gym session or stay late at work and then not have the energy to write anything after dinner. It’s all done before you even start anything else.
Now, it’s not easy and you need to make it work for yourself. I’m always tweaking my setup. Noise is my enemy. I use a pot on the stove to boil my water for coffee, the jug has a loud whistle. Likewise I use my hand coffee grinder rather than the screeching whir of the electric one. Today a downpour has woken my son. No problem, as I get up early every day, one is no big loss.
The doors in our house are loud. So I try not to go backwards and forwards. Hell, when I leave to go and lift, I jump the back fence rather than wake the house with our clunky door. Feeling like a burglar in the sun rise is a great pre-workout boost.
How to Get Up Early
Give yourself reasons to get up that are stronger than staying in bed. When you wake up you don’t lay there resenting the world but roll out and get going. I like lifting, jiu-jitsu and writing more than anything so I get up.
Build the habit. As it becomes a regular part of your routine it just happens. I don’t use an alarm anymore as I always wake up. Once you have momentum it almost happens by itself.
Go to bed early. As a result of getting up early, you get tired. I need my sleep and aim for eight hours. So getting up at 5:30 am means I need to be asleep by 9:30 pm. So come nine o’clock it’s time to pack it up and head to bed.