If you are not a morning person, I am the peppy person you want to punch in the face when you get to work. I never thought it would be so, but I have become a morning person.

If you had told me {or my mother} years ago that I would be a morning person as an adult, I would have rolled my eyes or laughed you out of the room. In high school, my mother would yank blankets off of me, touch me with her ice-cold hands, and yell at me to get me out of bed. Every morning.

In college, in all of my A.M. classes, I was the un-showered girl in pajamas sitting sullenly in the back row in class. I didn’t understand the girls that showed up in cute outfits with their hair and makeup done at 7:15 in the morning. I secretly hated them because they looked so fresh and lovely, but didn’t have the will or discipline to be like them.

At my first “big girl” job, I had to be at work at 7:00 a.m., sometimes earlier. This was a nightmare, but I eventually got used to it {kind of}. I even showered and did my hair and makeup. I was at this point, still rushed and frazzled because I hit snooze a million times and woke up at the last possible minute. As soon as I got to work, I would run {or more accurately, trudge} to the espresso machine and guzzle down an obscene amount of sludgey brown crack before I could function.

It wasn’t until I worked at a series of organic farms {click here for that story} for a period of time that I started to appreciate the beauty of the early morning, the peace and stillness of the beginning of a new day.

This year has been the real climax of all of this morning person stuff. Earlier in the year, I read a post {click here to read it} on Michael Hyatt’s blog titled “How to Become a Morning Person.” He highlights the fact that morning people tend to make more money, be more productive, are healthier and live longer, and are more happy and satisfied with their lives.

Well heck, I decided it was time to be a morning person. I have goals I want to achieve in life and if that means being a morning person, than I am going to do it. I have also always had this fantasy of being the wife and mother that wakes up at the crack of dawn to pack lunches and make breakfast for her family. As a morning person, I am thinking this can now be reality.

It was rough going at first, and still is some days because I tend to stay up too late sometimes, but I am getting better and better at it and don’t think I’ll ever go back. Although I have yet to make any more money, I have more energy, am generally more organized, and overall am more happy, healthy, and productive.

On the weekdays, I wake up around 5:00 a.m. and do prayer and reading. This is really a crucial foundation to having a good day. After that, I do a quick morning yoga routine to loosen up for the day, and make my way to the kitchen to boil water for tea and make breakfast. Then, I get showered and dressed and get to work around 7:15 or so, where I make coffee for the guys and get the office ready to run for the day.

Since my office is right by the front door, I get to wave and do my cheerful good mornings to the zombified, angry, non-morning people that walk in the door. They generally glare at me and mutter good mornings, then avoid me until after they’ve had their coffee.

I have no special powers over any other person, as far as I can tell. As Michael Hyatt says in his article, it really is all about establishing good habits, making good choices, and having the discipline to stick to them. Being a morning person means I have to give up social events and happy hours and leave early when I do go. It means I don’t drink lots of alcohol and eat fast food at midnight; this prevents the “feeling like utter crap and hating the world” feeling the following morning.

I’ve had to learn to say no, even when I want to say yes. Most nights, I do my best to wind down by 9:00 or 9:30 so I have time to be still for more reading and prayer before I go to sleep, usually by 10:00 p.m. Even on the weekends, I am much more conscious of what I am doing – staying out late and waking up too late on a Saturday can mess up my sleep schedule for half of a work week.

It means that more or less, I have to stick to a fairly strict schedule after work – exercise, make dinner, and often do more work – the stuff I really want to do but can’t during my day job. When I first started this morning person business, I turned into a hermit of sorts and this made me miserable. I remember to make plans with friends at least a couple of times during the workweek now, and this has fixed the problem.

If you have ever wondered how I work full time and get other stuff done, this is it. Plain and simple. I possess no magical powers, I have no crazy secrets. I am far from perfect, but I constantly work on improving. It’s good habits, discipline, hard work, and sacrifice. You can do it too. You have to want to. You have to have goals and purpose for your life that make you want to transcend the hamster wheel of bad habits we all get stuck on.

All of this tedious and self-centered story about my morning routine is to share that I really treasure the beginning of my days, now that I take time to usher the day in. I can greet the day with more thankfulness and joy and prepare myself to better do what I need to do, instead of starting it with rushed reluctance, sullen rebellion, and caffeine addiction. I am better able to be aware of the presence of God, to love him and love people the way I need to. This makes life infinitely richer and more beautiful.

I am going to go back to breakfast now, because it really is the most important meal of the day. I love breakfast. Anyone who knows me knows I love pancakes, bacon, and anything from Cracker Barrel. However, these are not energizing meals for everyday. What we fuel ourselves with really contributes to how we feel and our ability to focus.

I have a rotation of things I eat for breakfast – usually scrambled eggs and vegetables or hot cereal with a bunch of fibrous things and nuts thrown in. I am going to share the recipe for my Secret Sauce Super Shake with you today. It’s vegan, full of protein, fiber, and good fats and has some cinnamon thrown in for anti-inflammatory properties.

Secret Sauce Super Shake, deconstructed.

Secret Sauce Super Shake, deconstructed.

This is a serious breakfast of champions, something you drink before going on a mighty hike or bike ride. Or if you simply want to stay full and energized during the first half of your work day. It keeps me full for about 6-7 hours, which is a pretty big deal for me.

I know there’s some weird looking ingredients, but when you mix it all up it tastes like cold and good. It might be expensive initially to stock up on all of these things, but once you work them into your rotation and use them with other meals, it’s more manageable. You can also play around with substituting milks and protein powders. I like the hemp because it’s plant based and amazingly nutritious and has a pretty good texture. I’ve also tried many green powders and like the Amazing Grass the best; it also has probiotics.

All blended up.

All blended up.

I actually got my act together and calculated some nutritional information for the folks concerned with those things. I’m not sure whether or not to be concerned about the amount of carbs in this puppy, so I’ll just not be concerned, because I feel great after I have it. If you want to eliminate some of them, just leave out the banana and maple syrup. I must add that if you are not accustomed to having a lot of fiber in your diet that you may want to stay close to a bathroom the first time you have this, until your body gets used to it. Just keeping it real.

If you’ve been feeling like making a change in lifestyle, I hope I’ve given you some encouragement to switch over from wanting to punch morning people to being one of us. We welcome you into our ranks with rays of sunshine and pep in our step. 

Thanks for reading, and here’s the recipe:

Secret Sauce Super Shake

½ banana

1 cup frozen mixed berries

1 tbsp chia seed

1 tbsp raw whole flax seed

1 scoop Amazing Grass Super Foods powder

3 tbsp hemp protein

1 tbsp pure maple syrup {NOT AUNT JEMIMA’s!!}

1 cup almond-coconut milk

1 tsp cinnamon

A handful of spinach

Stick it all in a blender and blend well. Add water to adjust consistency if desired. This will thicken as it sits because of the chia seeds, so take that into account if it concerns you!

Calories – 443, Protein – 19.5 grams, Carbohydrates – 62.75 grams, Sugar – 25 grams, Fiber – 29 grams, Omega 3 fats – 5882 mg, Omega 6 fats – 752 mg

The Chinese super-blender my mom sent me that makes the secret sauce happen. So powerful it has the title of royalty. I have very limited ability in reading & writing Chinese...so it took me a minute to figure out what the buttons are for.

The Chinese super-blender my mom sent me that makes the secret sauce happen. So powerful it has the title of royalty. I have very limited ability in reading & writing Chinese…so it took me a minute to figure out what the buttons are for. It was pure comedy to watch the first usage attempt, I’m sure.

6 thoughts on “How I Became a Morning Person

  1. I think if you are trying to accomplish something specific its great to have a rigid schedule but I have a hard time wanting to keep it after the project is done. I like hanging out to much

    I am not a particularly grumpy morning person but I don’t get up very early. This means that I am in a hurry a lot of time to get to what I am doing next. I get up early and go to bed early when I have a reason that I have to. It is on a project basis (both personal and professional) but it is not a mainstay of my lifestyle.

    Being awake early is nice but the extra time I get to be with friends/family at night is to important to me and very few people get together for breakfasts.

    I would go nuts with that much schedule. I might get a lot done right before I go nuts but I think the end result would be sad.

    different strokes for different folks I guess.

    • Thanks for the note and your thoughts Andrew! Hopefully I will see you soon and we can expound in a face-to-face discussion, cuz there’s a lot here to discuss. :) Bottom line is, as a “creative-relationship” person, grounded routines do not come naturally for me. In order to put all of my crazy ideas into action I have really had to develop discipline and develop a routine so my body can better handle the busyness of everyday life and very importantly, so I can be consistent in my productivity.

      I know how much spending time with friends means to you, and I admire that about you and value it also. I will say that I have had to really thoughtfully choose who I spend time with, and this makes me value those special times more. I’ve also been able to build deeper relationships this way because I’m not spread too thin emotionally and time-wise.

      Have a good’n!

  2. Wish I can say this about myself some day! Glad to know it’s achievable. I also read that post by Michael Hyatt but I did nothing about it. I assumed I’m beyond help. Problem with me is that I’m a night owl. I force myself to bed every night and I suppose that’s where my problem lies. But I try.

    Thanks for the recipe! Although I can’t promise to try it. :D

    • Hey Tatuu! Thanks for stopping by and reading, and for taking time to leave your thoughts, it means a lot. You are absolutely NEVER beyond help, but the key is you must believe that fact yourself. I understand night-owlness, I used to be one as well. If you ever decide to take the plunge into morning-personhood, keep me posted on how it goes.

      You are welcome, love sharing recipes! Haha, the guys at work tell me it looks like baby barf – I’m sure that makes you want to try it more. Have a great day!!

    • Oh that is too funny, you have a ladyship?! Did it come with that recipe book I can’t read with the guy in the suit and glasses on the cover drinking something green?? Glad you are feeling better, keep rockin’ the shakes.

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