Carving Out Time for Myself: Why I Choose To Wake Up At 5AM


Last month, I was listening to a podcast before drifting off to sleep and what I heard resonated with me so deeply.

Marie Forleo of The Marie Forleo Podcast (you must check her out) sat down with leadership expert Robin Sharma to discuss his thoughts on the elite “5 am club”, its benefits, and his astounding findings.

*I already know what you’re thinking. This chick wakes up at 5am. She’s a lunatic. I might be.*

My little one wakes up around 5:30. That gives me about 30 minutes to stretch or do some yoga, journal, and set my goals and mantra for the day. Once I convinced myself I wasn’t crazy for waking up at the a** crack of dawn, I set my alarm for Day 1 and slipped into bed a little earlier than usual (9 pm is the new 10 pm).

That first week was rough. “Sam, do I have to? I just need a few more minutes.” He’d murmur something encouraging and I’d throw the covers off myself. I’d think of a few friends that were supporting my new goal, and I’d rise up and roll out my mat.

Just as I’d settle into my darkened living room, my son would cry out and I’d be interrupted from the “me time” I purposefully set aside. Some mornings, my husband would take over so I could continue meditating; other times, I would pause my routine to take to my son’s (obviously).

Here’s the thing.

Five minutes alone to set the tone for my day
is always better than none.

It gives me clarity, peace, and the kind of calmness I needed to begin my day. I’m not asking for much; really just time to think, or to not think… I guess.

The undistracted time alone does wonders for my state of mind. It’s as if I can take a few breaths and moments to strip back the fog of the morning before my baby needs me — and all of me, in an instant. And, well, I’m sure you know how that goes.

According to Sharma, it takes 66 days to make something a habit. So here I am, 22 in and I can say it does get easier each day.

In fact, I almost look forward to the quiet stillness of a grey morning. Just a few cars pass by and it’s as if the sun rises only for me to see. It’s a whole lot of gratitude tucked into a short amount of time. Time that, sure, could be spent sleeping, but time I choose to take more deliberate care of.

And when it’s all said and done, I’m looking out at a new day with a clearer outlook.

I just love this quote from writer Wang Yip, who reviewed Sharma’s book The 5 AM Club:

“Waking up early is a keystone habit — it’s a habit in which many other great things in your life will fall into place as a result of waking up early — things such as developing willpower and discipline, having time for exercise, reflection and planning your day, and being able to concentrate on your biggest tasks for the day early on when your willpower is at its highest.”

[Clap, clap, clap]

Guys… these are all the reasons I’m doing this. SEE! I’m not that crazy.

Wake Up at 5 am | Central Mass MomI don’t follow Sharma’s exact 20/20/20 formula—because let’s be real—I don’t have a full hour to myself in the morning…. unless I want to wake up at 4:30. HAH.

In case you’re curious about jumping on board, here’s what my mornings tend to look like:

5 am: wake up, brush teeth, get water, head into the living room
5-5:10 am: stretch and do some yoga on my mat
5:10-5:20 am: journal my goals, a mantra for the day, and how the 5 am club is feeling/going overall
5:20-5:30 am: grow in some way by reading an article, watching an informative video, or setting to action on something I’ve been putting off

Do you carve out time for yourself throughout the day? I’m not talking about mini bathroom breaks with a child clinging to your hip. I’m talking about you, alone, for set-aside intentional minutes doing something that makes you happy. Some of us choose late nights to work on a project and some of us have nannies to allow us some adult space. Some of us give our partners the “eye” when we’re in dire need of a break.

Where’s your break?

For me, right now, it’s my 5 am time.

Are you gonna join the club?

You can follow me @thegoodgetter on Instagram for more on my journey.


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