I’m an early riser. Yesiree I am and there isn’t much I can do to change that (although I would love tremendously to sleep until 9 am everyday and easily cruise out of bed and into a nice warm cup of coffee!) My early riser status, for those who don’t know me, is not something I do because I want to… Oh no no. It’s what’s required when you’re a personal trainer (clearly I didn’t think this whole PT thing out too carefully and what it would require of me). OF COURSE there are people out there who want to workout before heading to their jobs… duh! So here I am, an early riser whose day begins and finishes usually before your own morning cup of coffee.
And if I may be frank, hearing that alarm go off at 5:30 am is something I completely detest. I’m not going to sugarcoat it ladies, I hate it. My 1st thought is always, “Wow I hate this.” I scamper into the bathroom as quiet as a mouse, oozing with hatred. Hatred at the morning, at my toothbrush, at my face in the mirror. I hate it all.
Clearly this is not healthy and I realize that, but the hatred is ruthless! My next thought after the “Wow I hate this” thought is, “When can I get back into bed?? How many hours must I endure before I can get back into the comfort and warmth that is my bed and cocoon myself for eight hours?” Forget the day and the things I can experience and possibly enjoy… I want nothing to do with that, I just want my bed.
Enter the 10 Day Making Space Cleanse. (Clearly something has got to give after all this negativity right? I’m not a total lost cause, I promise!) Now this is not a typical cleanse where you starve yourself for 10 days and then binge eat on day 11 (been there, done that, over it). No, this is more of a spiritual cleanse where you work towards making space in your life for good things, happy things, things that you don’t hate. Now I’m not a touchy-feely kind of girl and I’m not overly spiritual, except for that brief period when I did get in about 20 minutes of meditating a day when I was pregnant and had time, but other than that, not much going on in the spiritual realm for me, so this is a little step out into the universe for me, but I’m willing. After all, if something can help me negate the negative thinking that consumes me, then yes, I want in.
So here we go, day one, 1st exercise of the cleanse. I’m excited.
It reads, “Sit in stillness.”
Ummm, cleanse-creator Hannah Marcotti, I hate to say it but that just ain’t gonna happen. Work with me, I have a young child that has no concept of stillness. When he finally points to his crib because even he can’t stand for one more second all the moving around, jumping, whining and crying, it’s me time. I got a million things to do that I can’t even give the proper amount of time to and you think I’m just going to sit there… and do nothing? Nope, not gonna happen, let’s move on!
Part two, day one. We are asked to “…take some time to think about your morning routine.” Oh Lord, this isn’t going well AT ALL. “Many of us wish that our morning routine was different than it is.” No sh*t. “We wish we could exercise early or wake to journal or spend some quiet time getting ready for the day before others arise. Or we wish we could sleep in, have more relaxing time.” Amen sista, now you’re talking my language.
She goes on to say, “Look at your morning routine as though through the eyes of a camera… Looking at our life with the eye of a lens can transform the ordinary into something special, a sacred time.” Did she just say “sacred time”?
Ok, so I’m game to this portion of the cleanse. Think of the irony, I mean how weird is it to take photos of something you hate? We never do that. You see someone you despise and your first thought is never to take a picture of them so you can hold onto that memory, right? Or you see an ugly flower… you’re not thinking photo-op. Intrigued by this odd exercise, one morning, with my iPhone in hand, I actually take photos of something that I hate.
If you hate your mornings like I do, then you HAVE to take pictures of it, I’m not kidding. What transpired was earth shattering. (Not really but there was a shift.) I took photos of my alarm clock, of the lack of light coming through the windows, of my toothbrush, of my shoes, of my water bottle (but I did stop short of taking a pic of my freshly woken face. I mean really people, let’s be civil here.)
I have to admit, it really kind of changed my thought process. In looking at the photos at the end of the day, I realized that I really loved the toothbrush shot. It represents, in a dental hygiene kind of way, my little family and that’s kind of cute to me. These photos allowed me to appreciate the things that I can’t register at that god-awful early hour. The photos allowed me to see my morning differently. Now, I open the medicine cabinet in the morning and I see happiness. How weird!
Still working on the other 9 days in the cleanse but I feel already a little more space for happiness in my life… so thank you iPhone, Hannah and my willingness to do something ironic. It actually helped. And there you have it, a clever way to make your mornings suck a little less.