If you’ve been following my coaching, videos, posts, etc. for a while, one thing you will know about me is that I’m passionate about women being their amazing, beautiful, soulful, authentic selves.
One of my favourite concepts when I was just starting out in coaching years ago, but one that I still review often now, is a list of “brain rules” created by Dr. John Medina (a super-geeky brain expert who is fab). His first rule is that we learn best outside (love that). But perhaps one of his most important is that all of our individual, quirky brains are wired utterly differently so we should follow our own impulses rather than adhering to rigid external rules – got to love a “rebel”.
But my most favourite, and something I talk about so much, is his rule number seven – “Sleep well, think well”.
I’ve always admired and revered those fabulous morning people who could simply bounce out of bed all smiley and energetic, and get the world sorted before 7am. I just wasn’t one of them. Or so I thought.
And then I bought a horse. And I now I HAVE to get up. And I mean early… and it hurt, because it wasn’t my true nature or habits. But what I found out about waking early, and myself I loved. Waking early means I’m no longer running late. For anything. I start the day around 6 and I’m awake first. I have precious peaceful time to myself to reflect, set my intentions for the day, say my affirmations, drink water and potter around my skincare routine without being in demand from others.
I always have time for yoga and stretching and start the day feeling grounded and earthed and like I’m being the best version of me.
As weird as this may sound, I also love my early morning time with our (4) cats. The little kitten, Socks, waits outside my room and is so darn happy to see me it’s super cute and warms my heart. She then purrs and runs downstairs with me to join the older ones.
I then get greeted with snorts and whinnies from Fleur who is delighted it’s breakfast and time to start the day. So, I’ve gone from running late, feeling pressured, rushing around, forgetting where I put things and like I’m a bit of a morning mess to this calm, organised, better version who gets more done in the day and usually in the right order too.
Honestly, it’s the new me. At 47 I feel like I’ve cracked something new and can’t ever imagine going back to my old 12-8 habit.
A word of caution, however, it might not be for everyone. Some people genuinely are more productive sleeping later, waking later. I thought that I was one of them but just realised that I had got into habits that were opposite to what I needed, and it didn’t serve me.
The very most important thing? Whatever time you sleep and wake up, follow the same routine +/- every day (yes, even at weekends). Getting your body into this (circadian) rhythm is your very best chance to feel rested and have a clear head and thinking.
But here is what I know. When I’m tired I rest.
I want to start a Resting Revolution
If you want a nap right now, the most intelligent thing you can do is take it. If you want to perform well, sleep well. If you have small children and you are severely sleep deprived, know that finding a way—any way—to get sleep is the only way to give children a healthy, cheerful, available parent.
I know this is asking a lot. But any way you look at being the woman you most want to be is going to ask for everything you can give. Make your first priority your own well-being if only to serve the greater good. I would say more about this, but I really need a nap.