Tag Archives: morning routine

Settling In

I am finally—FINALLY!—feeling settled in. I moved into my new place at the end of January, and since then it’s been a madhouse of unpacking and keeping on top of my work deadlines, which have not slowed down at all. They’ve actually expanded, because on top of everything else I’ve been branching out and diversifying my services.

The first few days after the move were more on the depressing side—lack of sleep, coupled with the mess of tons of boxes. My new place is much smaller compared to my past homes, and with the clutter of so many boxes (because … books, right?) it was tough to even find a pathway from the living room to the kitchen!

But I persevered, and unpacked. And unpacked some more. And then some more.

The end result? I’ve decided a minimalist lifestyle is very much to my liking. I ended up giving away boxes and boxes of books, and I’ve also come up with a couple of new rules for myself:

  1. For every print book I buy, I must giveaway TWO from my shelves.
  2. Every month I will go through my bookshelves and pick books to donate or give away.

I ended up getting my living/dining room (it’s all one and the same, rather small, space) cleaned up, and I love it! But I will need to keep my eye on clutter, because I’ve noticed the moment I start heaping books and papers on my coffee table or the dining room table, the place doesn’t feel quite so cozy any more.

On top of that, I managed the feat of clearing/unpacking the living room by lugging all unpacked boxes up to my bedroom/office. These are the “difficult” boxes, filled with papers and miscellaneous things for which I have absolutely no room, so the plan is to slowly go through them one by one, while at the same time brainstorming and implementing some sort of filing system that will accommodate what I need it to accommodate. Plus there will be a whole lot of shredding going on …

And what I am I looking forward to?

  • The implementation of new habits and routines
  • Getting back to reading
  • Getting back to writing
  • Getting back to blogging

Most of all, I’m eager to start blogging about my reading again. And to kick things off, here’s what’s on my currently reading list right now:

Elegance

Elegance, by Kathleen Tessaro. This is a reread for me, one of the books on my comfort reading list. This may seem like a strange choice for those of you who know me and my reading tastes, as it’s neither mystery, sci-fi or fantasy, but aside from these genres, I also adore transformation/Cinderella stories. Since there is, unfortunately, no readily available genre of “transformation/Cinderella stories”, when I do find one I love, it usually ends up in my comfort reading list.

life-changing magic of tidying-up

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, by Marie Kondo. According to my Kobo, I’ve read about 60% of this book. It’s been helping me a lot. Not that I’ve actually been holding things in my hands and asking myself, “Does this spark joy?” (I find this doesn’t work very well with books, because I tend to say, “Yes!” to each one, read or unread). But somehow, just reading this book has made it easier for me to declutter. Things don’t feel as precious anymore, and I’m finding there’s nothing like that feeling of “letting one more thing go”.

Have any of you read Kondo’s latest, Spark Joy? I’m on hold for this one at the library, and I’m expecting great things from it.

miracle morning

The Miracle Morning, by Hal Elrod. I haven’t started this one yet, but I’ve heard so many good things about it. And I’m definitely in need of a new morning routine, one that will help me build fun, happy and productive days.

My Early Morning Read

It’s funny how sometimes a habit can change without you noticing it. I’ve been focused on waking up earlier (my early morning walk is turning out to be a great incentive!) and it wasn’t until this morning that I realized I’ve changed another habit: what I read first thing in the morning.

For a long time now, my morning reading routine has gone something like this:

  1. Check email on phone.
  2. Add interesting-looking items from email newsletters to Safari reading list on phone.
  3. Read from reading list.

The problem with this routine, though? There aren’t all that many gems. For example, I’m a sucker for articles about productivity, but unless someone is taking you through a new system they’ve developed, there’s just not a whole lot of anything new you can say about productivity. So even articles with eye-catching headlines (“This One Little-Known Technique Will Super-Charge Your Productivity”) usually turn out to be a rehashing of a productivity maxim I’ve already read about (and read about and read about …)

But still, it was my routine, and a while back when I was considering changing how I started my day, I felt very resistant to changing this part of my routine.

And yet …

It turns out I went ahead and changed things quietly, under my own radar. For the past four days, I’ve been turning to A Circle of Quiet, by Madeleine L’Engle, first thing in the morning. For some reason I’d brought it into my bedroom and placed it on my bedside table (I don’t usually keep any books on my bedside table, as I rarely read in bed).

circle of quiet

And every morning now, I open it up and I read a few pages. Not a lot of pages—I’m definitely not reading it like I would a novel. But the words are beautiful and some of the passages really speak to me. So much so, I’ve even taken to underlining sections (with a pencil—I don’t dare yet to mark up the book with a pen, even though I like using pens better).

It kind of feels like L’Engle is holding my hand, turning my attention to some things I really needed to look at. Here’s a passage I underlined recently:

“A self is always becoming. Being does mean becoming, but we run so fast that it is only when we seem to stop—as sitting on the rock at the brook—that we are aware of our own isness, of being.”

She’s one of my favourite authors (A Wrinkle in Time is a childhood favourite, but I’ve read most of her children’s fiction) and I find myself wishing I’d come across this book when I was younger, fresh out of university. I definitely could have used her perspective back then; I definitely can use her perspective right now, too, for that matter!

The funny thing is, I’ve had this book in my TBR stacks for ages. And I mean ages. Maybe five or six years. I never felt like I had the time to read it, but now I’ve carved out some time. It’s only ten or fifteen minutes in the morning, but that’s enough time to let me drink in a few more of L’Engle’s words and thoughts.

This is one habit I’m going to keep.

So I Said Those Fateful Words Today …

roadway

I managed to get up bright and early for my walk with my friend Christy—I actually woke up before my alarm was supposed to go off! And while 7:15 a.m. probably sounds like a normal wake-up time to a lot of people, I can’t remember the last time I was up so early in the day, as in up and about and doing things like, you know, moving around.

We met at 8:10 a.m. and walked together for a little over an hour. Then I race walked the ten minutes it took me to get home. It’s just a little after 10:30 a.m. right now and I am absolutely bursting with energy!

It was SO much fun, we’ve decided to meet up every Friday morning. Plus I want to walk every morning, so I’m planning on walking by myself all the other days, too. This energy I’m feeling is just amazing!

But for Christy, our walk today was really later than she’d like. She runs a food business and usually has meetings scheduled on Friday mornings.

So yes, as we were discussing  meeting up next Friday, I said those fateful words.

“Why, yes, I can meet you at 7:15 am on Fridays.”

I know, right? I ACTUALLY SAID THIS.

But you know what? I think I can do it. I really think I can start getting up at 6:30 am.

But just in case, if you all could send early-morning-wakefulness vibes my way, it would be much appreciated.

Photo credit: Pixabay