Maximizing Time in the Morning
I’m a morning person, but I’m not sure when that happened. I vividly remember daily morning fights with my mom, where she would even physically drag me out of bed to get to school, and late nights at hours I can no longer fathom when my creativity would spontaneously surge.
The most logical explanation would be that I had to become a morning person—I’d been on a school schedule since I was four, and started teaching just out of undergrad—but really, I’ve come to realize I prefer mornings. My mind is clearer, I get more done more quickly, and I feel better.
Still, I’m slow to start on work weekdays. I hit snooze a few too many times and linger in bed, scrolling my precious getting-ready minutes away, leaving me just enough time to scramble out the door. These past couple weeks, though, with the first signs of spring and somewhat of a routine, I’ve found myself with minutes to spare. Here are some steps I’m taking to maximize my time in the morning.
shower at night
I swore by morning showers and still appreciate them, but with a 6:00am wake-up call, night showers are the way to go. It's refreshing to wash off the day when I get home from work—the classroom germs, teenage smell, evening yoga, air pollution, and who knows what else from commuting via public transportation. And the only thing better than fresh clean sheets is being clean in them!
Use your Sunday to make to-dos, pick out an outfit the night before, keep your (teaching) bag in an easy-to-grab place, as well as anything you need to remember with it. Having these simple tasks done beforehand ensures that I never forget anything and that I can still get to work on time on those scrambling-out-the-door days. I can ease into the morning, and that sets a positive tone for the day.
Getting up is the hardest part, but, as all routines are, it’s a habit. The more you practice getting up at the first alarm, even sitting up, the easier it becomes. Of all the steps, for me, this one maximizes my time in the morning most.
Of course, if you’re maximizing time, you’re minimizing other factors. If I have the time, I do enjoy taking it for other getting-ready routines (my beauty routine, or really ritual, for example). When I’m pressed for time, however, I keep it minimal—a thin layer of tinted moisturizer, a dusting of powder, fill in the brows, curl the lashes, done. No YouTube videos playing in the background on those days.
And this probably goes without saying, but minimize the scrolling. It’s mindless, unproductive, and a time-suck. I’ve been leaving my phone on airplane mode overnight, a healthy decision for many reasons, until I walk out the door in the morning.
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