Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Why You Should Be Awake At 6 Every Morning


I've gotten into this weird habit over the last few months of getting up really early. Surely, this means that I'm old now. Surely, I'm moments away from wondering what's on 60 Minutes tonight and bingo. Except I kind of like bingo.
It boils down to competition for moments.
I allow my friends to compete with my alone time. In fact, I allow everything to compete with my alone time. grocery stores, errands, renewing my passport, phone calls, stupid television shows, listening to other people's conversations, anything that moves or makes a noise pretty much gets my attention before I do.
At 6Am, there is no competition. No one is up, no stores are open, and no one is calling.
6AM can be for making myself a cup of coffee and drinking it with my geraniums.
6AM can be for writing things that no one will ever read.
6AM can be for trying 2 new hairstyles.
6AM can be for staying in bed, but awake, and thinking.
Now, at first I thought, "this isn't productive, just sitting here like this", but then I realized that I've had some really great clarity during that time. I've carried it with me to work and accomplished more. Or I thought out a problem so that I didn't have to solve something important in the line at Target while I was digging in my purse for a credit card and wondering if anything was maxed out or if I should maybe start drinking more water.
6AM definitely makes you a better writer and a better thinker. Both take practice and while I imagine most people know that writing takes practice, I wonder if they know that thinking cannot be done really well while doing a hundred other things as well.
I like the idea of multitasking but it doesn't really work that well with all activities. The only way I can erase all the competition is to get up at a time when there isn't any.
Side note: I guess this doesn't have to occur at 6AM - I used to babysit for a woman that went grocery shopping at 2Am and I thought she was nuts but now I totally get it.

6 Comments:

Anonymous JR Moreau said...

How long have you been in this routine? What made you decide to go that route?

I just started getting up at 6:30 to go jogging or ride my bike as I've let my exercise routine slip as life competes for my time (like you said). When I was in college I got up really early when I wasn't drinking and did a lot of good writing, thinking and exercising. My girlfriend told me that I need to do this every day for a few weeks no matter how shitty I feel when the alarm goes off so I can develop a routine. I've had false starts on new, beneficial routines before. I want this one to stick.

May 26, 2009 at 9:12 AM  
Blogger Caitlin said...

JR - I have been on this kick for a few weeks now and I think it can stick as long as I see results.
I started it on accident by having a few things I had to get up excessively early for and my body got used to being up. So now I'm up.
Let me know how yours is going along the way.

May 26, 2009 at 9:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

soon you won't even need an alarm clock...
- Monster

May 26, 2009 at 11:47 AM  
Blogger Janet Clarey said...

Last year during the summer I started getting up at 5AM to weed the garden. It does make a huge difference in my day. Kind of a bitch with a hangover though.

May 26, 2009 at 4:24 PM  
Blogger brooklyn said...

my 6AM is actually staying up till 3AM.

i feel most inspired between 11pm - 3am, i always have and hope i always will.

it gives me time to get everything ready for the next day. so that i can wake up, shower, grab my bag and go.

this routine of mine has been in motion for years, particularly because i was never home before 4am from bartending. but something strange has been happening lately.

weekends with DG1 in town, i've been falling asleep around midnight every Friday and Saturday night.
haven't figured out why this is yet. . .strange.

May 26, 2009 at 4:39 PM  
Blogger AgJobNetwork said...

After our daughter was born - personal time became even less available. I had time for my wife, my daughter, my dogs, my work. But there was nothing left for me. It was frustrating! 5am quickly became my friend. I found that hour between 5 and 6 in the morning was a perfect "me time"! I can read blogs, check the news, have coffee, lounge, research an interesting topic, whatever strikes me as relevant on that particular day.

Thanks for sharing - so glad I am not the only one finding solitude in the early hours.

May 29, 2009 at 5:38 AM  

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