Friday, October 6, 2017

Wake up Routines - Do We Need Them?

Sometimes, it feels so decadent to get out of a routine, even if just for the day or the week. I suppose that now that I am retired, people think that I do not need to abide by a routine. I beg to differ. Even though it has been over a year since my retirement, I still have not found the "routine" for me. I just keep trying out new ones to see where I fit. Some things don't change in my waking up routines. There is even research to back up why this is a good thing.

Of course, you know that I found a quote  ~  The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine.~
I truly believe this. Most of us wake up to an alarm clock. When I was in the 'get up, dress, hurry, hurry, drive in rush hour' work mode it was a terrible feeling when something did not go right. Either I overslept or snoozed too long and once that happened my whole day was set off on a bad note. Perhaps some of you are able to change that scenario all around. I, for one, could not.

Before becoming an administrator, back in my teaching days, I would tell my older students that if they saw me with no earrings or if I were wearing my glasses, then that meant my morning did not start well. (in other words, give me some space) These smart, loving children actually followed my advice. They knew that my day was just messed up and gave me my space. Plus, they knew that if they came to tell me a problem that they may have had, they knew that I would listen and cut them a break. 

This blog will list some of the ways certain routines may work for you so that you do not have a terrible, horrible, no good kind of day. I am leveraging many of these concepts.

  • Waking up on time is very important. If you enjoy that extra 10 minute snooze, then plan for it by setting your alarm clock ten minutes earlier. You can snooze or even do some stretching exercises to get the blood flowing, while in bed.
  • If your time zone is where it is light outside, it will also help if you go ahead and open the curtains in your bedroom to let the morning light in. Enjoy the start to a beautiful day.
  • Make your bed just to give yourself the satisfaction of having a neat room.
  • Take the time to hop in the shower that will refresh you, even if you had a shower after work or the night before. Is there a rule on how many showers you can take in a day? It is the perfect way to wake up to a refreshing start.
  • Coffee is my beverage of choice first thing in the morning. Pick yours! I must admit that I tried the healthy smoothie thing. It just did not work for me. This also is the time to have a healthy breakfast and to do a positive mantra with a bit of meditation. Quiet time is important. A time to write down things that you are grateful for. I actually mix these up for a morning routine and an evening one, by writing in my journal about my day.
  • If you are like me, I could not handle getting up at 4:30 in order to exercise and then start my 5:30 routine to get ready for work. Our goldendoodle needs to take a trip outside and that breath of fresh air, whether it be hot and humid or just a touch of coolness, helps the mood of my day. Some people have shared with me that they manage to park where they may walk a bit further on those beautiful mornings just to take in the fresh air.
  • As I have mentioned in previous blogs, I am a list maker and before I left for home the day before, I made a 'To Do' list for the new day. Before I made it to my office, many times the priorities had already changed. Be flexible.
  • Always have a fresh smell in your work space, as well as soft background music.
  • If I was really with it (and for now due to being at home) I am sure to have lunches planned and healthy snacks available.
  • In the days of being on the clock, so to speak, there was no way that I could meet friends or even go with my husband to breakfast. It was way too early. Now in retirement, this is a reality! A breakfast out now and then is such a wonderful treat for us. 
  • Always leave time for your commute. I had ten miles to drive and the time ranged from a 15 minute drive to an hour drive, depending on road work or accidents. I managed to give myself 30 minutes. If it took longer, I just had to call in. Also, on the drive in, some people love to listen to podcasts or audio books. I loved either the quiet or some calming classical music. Whatever suits your fancy is what is right for you.
  • It is vital to remember how important relationships are. I always needed that hug and kiss goodbye. In fact, even after that hug and kiss goodbye, my husband and I still would talk on our cell phones to each other, just as if we had not seen each other in over a week. Ahh, sweet love!

There are many other routines that people use to get themselves motivated for the day. The important thing is to find what works for you so that you have the most creative, productive day possible.

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