KATE-LEMERE

Taking Back the Morning

This time last year, I committed to achieving two things:

Check and check.

It wasn’t a perfect year, and of course, there is always room for improvement, but as I reflect on the last twelve months, I’m pretty proud. Sure there were weeks where I felt like I was falling flat. Some months I posted once. Some months I posted five times. There where weeks where I put my nose to the books for two hours a day, and others only 10 minutes. But the best part about LONG TERM GOALS is when you look back, the view can be magnificent. You know? Don’t forget to pat yourself on the back, bishes. We earned it. I took a few minutes to relish in my pride, and it gave me such a boost of gratitude and energy.

This year, I’m maintaining that momentum and continuing to follow my previously laid plan with ONE additional focus.

Take back the morning.

After I started going to therapy and meditating regularly, I gained a heightened sense of awareness of how my actions impacted my wellbeing. I began noticing my habits and acquired the (ever-evolving) skill of unpacking how they made me feel. I quickly realized so many of my habits and actions held a powerful domino effect that could spiral out of control if I wasn’t careful.

After a few weeks of self-observation, it hit me like a ton of bricks.

How I begin my day puts me at a distinct disadvantage.

I mean, I’m kind of embarrassed to even share the details with you, but I’ll eat some crow for the sake of the post!! You’ll see what I mean. The following is actual documentation of my behavior before 8 AM.

  • 6 AM: Wake up to my alarm at 6 AM. Hit snooze no less than three times. Scroll email, Instagram, and Evernote with one eye open, and one cheek pressed to my pillow. I started meditation in August, and like I’d be lying if I didn’t admit some days I didn’t do it WHILE I LOOKED AT LIKE TO KNOW IT OMFG I HATE MYSELF
  • 6:30 AM:  Stumble out of bed the second I hear my son stir. Haphazardly wash my face, apply my skincare and sunscreen, and brush my teeth. Read: RUSH because I wasted so much time in bed scrolling for no fahking reason
  • 6:40 AM: Shuffle into LL’s room to change his diaper, sing songs, and greet the day
  • 6:55 AM: Respond to emails or DMs while unloading the dishwasher, drink coffee, packing my meals, making LL breakfast, greeting my husband after he gets home from the gym, and half-ass other tasks while I attempt to “multi-task.”
  • 7:15 AM: Get dressed, rush some more, get LL dressed, rush some more, pack my bags, and head out the door
  • 7:30 AM – 7:45 AM: Drop LL off at daycare while mentally prepping my to-do list or program my class

LOL.

It’s a fahking shit show.

By the time we’d walk out the door at 7:45 AM, I was exhausted, anxious, and got NOTHING accomplished as one often does while multitasking like a lunatic. Not only that, all my scrolling caused me to harbor anxiety in my subconscious. Any posts would create a roller coaster of emotions.

Such as:

  • Jealousy
  • Fear or FOMO
  • Insecurity or self-doubt
  • Happiness
  • Sadness
  • Validation
  • Frustration
  • Joy
  • Etc

Some days I didn’t even leave the master bedroom before feeling like I wasn’t enough. I ask you WHAT KIND OF LIFE IS THAT?!

Something has to change.

My 2020 Resolution: Take Back the Morning

2020 is my year to take back my morning and set myself up for the best possible day, every day. They may not all be perfect, but I’m going to do my part to get the ball rolling. And here’s how.

My Morning Plan

Even the best-laid plans go wrong, so I’m making my game plan as specific as possible to cover all my basis to ensure I’m setting myself up for success. Here’s what I’ve got on tap:

  • Buy an alarm clock so that I can keep my phone in the kitchen
  • Get out of bed without hitting the snooze button
  • Dedicate FORTY-FIVE minutes to ME
    • Apply my FULL skincare routine
    • Drink a HOT cup of coffee
    • Meditate
    • Work on my self-development
  • Enjoy time with my family before the day begins

The Morning Timeline

  • 5:30 AM: Wake up
  • 5:35 AM: Apply skincare
  • 5:45 AM: Drink a HOT cup of coffee
  • 5:50 AM: 10 minutes of meditation using Headspace
  • 6:00 AM: 15 minutes of development
    • Listen to branding, strategy, or wellness podcasts. Get a list of my favorites here
    • Listen to a self-help book via Audible
    • Read my copy of The Daily Stoic
    • Write in Morning Pages
  • 6:30 AM: Wake up LL, sing songs, greet the day
  • 7:00 AM: Breakfast, catch up with Matt, meal prep and get our asses out the door

NOWHERE IN THE ABOVE does it state check emails, texts, Instagram, or any other social platform. I’m saving ALL of that for when daycare drop off is complete.  I’ve evaluated enough of my behavior to know even if I respond to an email or text before 8 AM (when I’m frantically rushing), I’m REACTING, instead of being proactive. And any response I give is not to the best of my ability. I’m confident that by waiting to start responding to my inbox so that it may have my full attention, the state of my business does not change. If anything, it will improve.

The Fine Print and Contingencies

Not only does your plan have to be SPECIFIC, but IMO, it has to anticipate the challenges and note when a caveat may pop up.

  • All of this depends on LL waking up at 6:30 AM, which he almost ALWAYS does. Even if he’s awake, we keep him in his crib until then. 9 out of 10 times, he sleeps. And 80% of the time he wakes up before 6:30, he has quiet time in his crib. The days he wakes up on the wrong side of the crib…well, I’ll have to pivot.
  • More importantly, this routine is DIRECTLY related to GOING TO BED. If I’m up until all hours of the night, there is no way any of this will happen.

A goal is so much deeper than surface level, and when you’re setting yours, you have to exam it from ALL sides. Not only does my morning have a timeline, but my evening does too.

Shut down at 8:30 PM. Bed by 9:30 PM. Lights out by 10. I’ve gone to bed at 10 PM for years, and moving that time any earlier seems like I’m biting off more than I can chew, so imma take a baby step here and then evaluate as I acclimate.

My Why

 I only get a few hours with LL a day during the week, and I think we both need a little more our time together. Additionally, the demands of motherhood take energy and time away from my professional focus. So when I’m at work, I’ve got to work. That clarity and focus will only come with a clear head. All of the above starts with me, and I can’t wait to see where the year will take me.

4 Comments

  1. Yes yes yes to all of this! I once read if you can’t make your bed how will you accomplish anything else during the day; 2019 was the year I started almost everyday by making my bed!

  2. Heather Feely

    Love this!! This is my 2020 too! Prioritize sleep! I don’t check my social media until I’m on the CTA to work.

    Now to get a sound machine so I don’t use my phone for it and can keep my phone on the other side of the room.

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