the first hours of the day

Up until last Monday I was working 40 hours a week, Friday-Tuesday, anywhere between 7:55 am and 9:30pm... needless to say I found myself utterly exhausted every day and felt that I was not giving my best at work or at home. So for several weeks I asked myself what had to give, what was more important in the long run, and where did I need to be focusing my time and energy right now? I knew the answers were not in favor of my job.

So I gave my 3.5 weeks notice and mentally prepared myself to once again face the deep, dark hole called "unemployment". This is a truly exhausting place to be when just starting out, fresh-faced and glossy eyed, trying to get my 'foot in the door' of my dream job. But for some reason, doors close, opportunities pass, and I'm left wondering what the hay am I supposed to be doing with my life?!

Thankfully, I have a wonderfully supportive husband, extremely encouraging family and friends, and an unbridled imagination that is always eager to dive into my wild daydream du jour! This time around I have decided to consciously change my perspective- strive to seek peace and pursue patience, not misplace excitement with worry, or let anxiousness defeat my optimism... If no one is going to open a door for me, I'll crawl through the window darn it!

However, I am still very much a person that needs a steady dose of structure, consistency, and predictability. I'm also a workaholic and don't feel satisfied unless I believe that I've stretched every minute of my day to the limit (healthy and realistic)! So I decided to make a conscious effort to fill the first few hours of each morning with the same simple motions until they become habits that help me to begin the day with a renewed mind and refreshed spirit.

(which wouldn't be so hard if I woke up to this view... Whitianga, NZ)

~ Anyway, they look something like this ~

6:35am~ alarm goes off, I lay in bed semi-consciously listening to music until coherent enough to form full sentences. Pray a simple prayer asking God to help me have peace, patience, and discipline today (energy, trust, etc. depending on the day)

7am~ get up, immediately make the bed, open the blinds, crack the windows if they weren't left open all night.

7:05am~ splash cold water on my face, put on comfy clothes, shoes. Head downstairs, start coffee.

7:10am~ leash up the dogs, head out for a 20-30min walk, restrain Wilson (the problem child) 4-5 times as he enters breakdown mode every time we see another dog, squirrel, bird, person, moving object, or something he imagines.

7:40am~ pour 1st cup of coffee, check email, face book, twitter, blogs, pinterest.

8:15am~ pour 2nd cup of coffee, head upstairs to shower, get dressed... or convince myself that it's okay to stay in comfy clothes because I have every intention of exercising at some point today. Make to-do list.

9:00am~ if I haven't worked out by now, it isn't going to happen today... time to get dressed and be a functioning member of society...and get crackin' on that to-do list.

~ Do you have a daily routine that helps you start the day off well? If you work from home or are a stay-at-home mama, how do you stay motivated and productive throughout the day?~

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