Last week, I very briefly mentioned my that morning routine often consists of waking:

“each morning exhausted from 5 hours of nightmares; eat junk food, sit around feeling tired but not doing anything to change it.”

However, I then came across Ellie’s fabulously detailed post about her morning routine which, I realised, focused a bit more than mine. She said:

“the way you start your morning completely colours the rest of your day – and I feel like I’m dicking up a lot of my days through my morning discrepancy.”

I know that everyone says this; but that’s because there’s TRUTH to it. Early mornings are not for everyone and habits aren’t always easy to learn.

Steps to Re-assess your Beginning

There are so many posts about becoming an early riser or optimising your morning routine. So many. But if you don’t know where to start, I’d just like to suggest a couple of things to think about.

  • Necessary time to get to by/to work/leave the house/be ready for.
  • If you weren’t feeling well and so were doing everything against your will and the bathroom was in use and it went wrong… how long would you need?
  • What you would do with extra time.
  • How long that extra stuff would take.
  • What time you should get up to at LEAST make option 2 and ideally add numbers 4 + 1 are slightly more than this.

Necessary Time

For instance, if I have a 9:00am lecture or exam, I need to be at my campus by 8:50am. That means leaving the house between 25 and 35 past. [7 minute bus ride; buses are 3 at once then 10 minute wait].

Personally, if I did nothing but get out of bed, make a cup of tea, shower, dress, eat and leave; I’d need 35 minutes. Without the show it’s about 20 minutes.

Time to wake by: 8am.

When everything is against you

When I wake up already feeling exhausted [common near the end of term or when I’m worried], I take about 35 minutes without a shower. Thus I’d need a good 50-60 minutes to get ready in. And even missing breakfast that’s probably 35-40 minutes.

Time to wake by: 7:25am

My Personal Timing

However, I wake at 7:15am for a 9am lecture. When I don’t need to be there until 11am or later, I wake between 8am and 9am.

Part of this is the fact that you don’t always know you’ll be feeling bad in the morning.

If I have a night terror and wake up at 8am; I’ve no time. I’ll rush and feel bad. In fact, I’d probably call in sick when waking that extra 30 minutes early would allow me to refresh and down some caffeine.

Extra activities

If you had your meeting put back to 11am, what would you do? You’re awake and dressed and find out just before you leave the house [by magic, email or telephone]. What you would do with extra time?

I’d grab a magazine or my book off the shelf. I’d sit down for ten minutes to meditate; stretch out into yoga or do ten press ups in the hallway. I’d run back upstairs for a nap or go up to check my blog/emails.

Okay so I wouldn’t do press-ups in the hallway because I live with 3 other students…

Is there a goal you’ve got going? I’m writing my third novel; for example. I do a daily workout. I’d make myself a sandwich for lunch to save me time and money later. If you can’t think of any, have a quick look here for 7 ideas to get you started.

Extra Time

Right.. so how long would it take to do 10 press ups, do the sun salutation, make a flask of tea and a sandwich for the day and check your emails?

For me, that’s about 10-15 minutes [as I collect emails while I go down to make tea and read them as I’m drying after my shower].

So; the extra wake up time?

Good day: Time to wake by: 7:45am

Bad day: Time to wake by: 7:00am

I wake at 7:15 because if I’m having a bad day; I couldn’t care less about my press-ups and the idea of greeting the day with yoga makes me feel dizzy.


Scientists are beginning to find that 6-7 hours of sleep is better than the previously thought 8. However, this is an incredible claim since are sleep rhythms are so individual; depending on our lifestyles. Those who eat healthy, wholegrain food and exercise a little a day will need less sleep than those who run miles or do hard quantum mechanical analysis while skipping breakfast as part of their daily routine.

Maybe you’d trade sleep for ten minutes of reading your book. However; if it would help you to be on time and relaxed even on days when the odds are against you, I feel that it’s worth it.

What do you think?
In light