I’ll be honest. I was never really a morning person. I didn’t have a morning routine and had no problem staying up until all hours of the night. A few years later, we had a newborn who barely slept through the night, so I became the sleep-whenever-I-could person. And then I became the tired mom of toddlers and found myself staying up later and later just to get in some alone time. I was filled to the brim with toddler demands. A friend once told me she woke up an hour before her kids every day, just so she could shower and get ready for the day before her kids woke up. I scoffed at the idea of even thinking about getting up earlier than I already had to.
Fast forward to now, and I’m up before the sunrise. Over the last ten years, I have shifted my sleeping patterns from being a night owl to sleeping whenever I could to becoming a morning person. I would like to highlight the word “becoming.” This change took time to cultivate. It took discipline. Discipline to get up every morning before my eyes wanted to open. Discipline to go to bed earlier and not watch one more episode. Discipline to keep getting up, morning after morning, even in the winter, when I would rather stay in my warm, comfy bed just a little bit longer.
When we were newlyweds, my husband asked me what I would do if I ever had a job that required me to leave for work before 7 AM. I simply said, “I wouldn’t have that job.” At the time I couldn’t fathom why anyone would choose to get up so early. But now I understand. I get it. I realize how beneficial getting up early in the morning is. It allows me to have some quiet time and begin the day in the right frame of mind—with a grateful heart. I get to start my day versus my kids starting my day, which can make me feel a step behind the whole day long. My morning routine sets me up for success and makes me feel more productive. And when I have time to drink my coffee before the rest of my family gets up, I’m much happier to see them when they do start to trickle down the stairs.
I never understood the value of having a morning routine until I set one and experienced the benefits. When my kids were little, I tried to soak in all my “me” time late into the night, but that simply set me up for failure the next day. Because I was naturally tired from being up so late the night before, I filled up on coffee to get through the day, crashed on the couch at night, and then began the cycle all over again.
By choosing to go to bed earlier, I was able to get up early and start the day with some quiet time, coffee, and journaling. This left me more refreshed than watching late night television ever did. I used to think I was just not a morning person, but now I know it’s not a personality type; it’s a learned habit.
If you are not a morning person, I encourage you to try it out for two weeks. That’s how long it took me to feel comfortable getting up early. When you take the time to start the day off intentionally by spending time in prayer and reading the Word, you fill up your tank with God’s truth. You’ll find you have more strength to face the challenges that come your way—even if it is just getting your toddler into the car seat.
In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice; In the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly (Psalm 5:3).