I opened two gifts this morning. They were my eyes.
Our oldest morning moods are a bit diverse these days. Some days she quietly sneaks into our bedroom to snuggle a bit, while other days start with “Daddy! DADDY! I finished sleeping! COME GET ME! NOW!”.
I’ve always been a morning person either waking a few minutes before my alarm or jumping out of bed at the first buzz. But my mindset has changed a lot over the years.
During my school years comfort was key. Having a sugary cereal or white bread while watching a sitcom with a blanket was my cushy ramp-up to face the rough (at that time) reality of school. I would bike to school with loud music which got me a lot more focused and fired up. The music part was one of my first experiments that opened my eyes for what music does for my mindset. Even though it wasn’t clear as day for me at that time, I realized that my mood and energy was better for some reason.
The formative years
My college years was very experimental in regards to my mornings. I spent hours finding the best music for my alarm. Slow and easy going, building up to finally kick start my day. Kanye West – Love Lockdown was my alarm for quite a while and had that perfect build up. I didn’t really need the slow build up because I would jump out of bed before the lyrics started. But it allowed me to choose whether or not the drums were necessary depending on my sleep and energy level. More often than not I would let it finish and gain that extra bit of momentum.
Positive affirmations seemed a bit silly to me at first, but at that time my self esteem was very low, I was extremely introverted and I was willing to try anything. I read Think and grow rich by Napoleon Hill and watched the movie The Secret. They both re-piqued my interest on the subject. I forced myself to repeat my positive affirmations out loud every morning.
I like myself!
Today I will talk to 5 different people!
I believe in myself!
Within two weeks I felt results. Not fully during the day but during the seances I would start to really believe in the words and the meanings. This had a huge impact on my life and I built momentum on those affirmations. I started working out, caring about my clothes and looks.
On special occasions I would mix it up, for example during exams I would say “I’ll bring them (the examiners) into my world!” and “Nobody know more about this than me!”. That last one was my way of getting my self esteem on a subject up to par with what was expected of graduating students.
The present is a present
For waking up I use the app Timely which has a smart rise function. It gradually increases the volume of the alarm (I prefer the Lyra bells) so I wake up nice and slowly. On workout days I grab a bottle of water and my bag and off to the gym I go. After the workout I come home to a hungry 4 year old who’s usually awake or wakes up shortly afterwards. I prepare her oatmeal and my eggs.
On non-workout days I turn on the espresso maker and make a large extra strong cup and prepare oatmeal for our oldest.
We sit, eat/drink and talk. She’s gotten fond of stretching and reminds me to stretch because “it feels so good and makes you taller…”. Recently we’ve started saying “it’s going to be a good day” and I’ve told her that it actually can make a difference. Whether you think it’s a good, mediocre or bad day, the time between the expectation and confirmation is best spent assuming good results. These early morning talks and small advice are incredibly fulfilling to me and that energy stays with me throughout the day.
The video below currently plays once my phone connects to the car between 6:15 and 8:15 AM on weekdays. It helps me to see myself as the hero in my own movie and I want my daughters to one day look at me and realize and say “Wow, my dad was a bad motherf…”.