5 a.m. What?

5 a.m. Some people view that time….literally, because that’s when they wake up or are already awake. Most people I know….see 5 a.m. and cringe!

No one wants to wake at 5 a.m!

No one wants to wake at 5 a.m!

I used to think I was not a morning person. But knew I was definitely not a night owl. I liked to say I was an afternoon person….whatever that means.

Anyway, the past several days my husband and I have been attempting to create the habit of waking up at 5 a.m. I mentioned in a previous post (Purposeful, Intentional, Productive) that I had spent the last week of NaNoWriMo getting up that early. It’s easier to rise when you have a very specific goal in the morning. Also, December being a hectic, holiday-filled month, getting up that early was sporadic at best. We have progressed to rising earlier than 5:30, so still in the middle of transitioning into the habit of a 5 a.m. rise and shine. But we’re getting there!

Why?? Why are we attempting something so crazy, when we don’t have to? ….you may ask.

Because all the people we want to be like… The leaders. The achievers. The people who make a big impact on the world around them…. All those people we look up to, and want to be like, were self-disciplined enough to be early risers. At 5 a.m. you don’t have the interruptions that you have the rest of the day. That first hour in the day, you can do whatever you like. Every day. Consistently. Which in turn, enables you to achieve your dreams!

What habits help you to achieve your dreams? Are your dreams important enough to you, to alter your lifestyle?

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Purposeful, Intentional, Productive

Okay, wow.

I did it! I reached over 50,000 words in the month of November. For those of you wondering what I’m talking about, it’s NaNoWriMo.

NaNoWriMo Winner 2012-180x180

The month was a crazy one:  Moving everything we own one weekend, working on a church project every night another week, and of course, the Thanksgiving holiday with family. On top of having a full-time job. I spent the last week getting up at 5:00 a.m. to catch up on my word count. And strangely enough, it turned me into a morning person. Which I now love!

Unfortunately, I didn’t get to write about this last Thursday–I was sick for an entire week. Which brings me closer to the point of this post…

After training for and running a marathon (see Here We Go Again… and Good vs. Crappy Runs and My First Marathon:  The Wonderful in the Horrible), after trudging through NaNoWriMo (see NaNoWriMo!!!!!!!!!!!!), and after a week of being sick, I decided to take an evening “off” from everything by watching TV and surfing the net. Of course, I did a few productive things like eat supper, play with the dog, and put laundry away/organize my closet (it’s still a little crazy after moving). I expected to feel relaxed.

Nope.

I felt like the evening was a complete waste. And I was frustrated because I had no idea why. Well….. Having spent every spare minute in the last six months working productively and intentionally toward huge goals, I have reprogrammed myself. Just like a person can “become” a morning person (see Michael Hyatt‘s post, How to Become a Morning Person), a person can become other things. I am becoming purposeful, intentional, and productive.

So now I’m struggling with conflicting feelings about the “new me”. I’m excited because being purposeful, intentional, and productive will propel me toward my future goals, life dreams, and crossing things off my bucket list. But I’m also a little saddened because I wonder if I will never feel relaxed again. But my husband reminded me, relaxation could just be redefined.

All in all, even if I have lost the ability to feel relaxed doing “nothing”, I am beyond excited at the future accomplishments and realization of dreams before me!

Greatness at 5:30 A.M.?

When Is the Time for Greatness?

I had it made as a runner. I lived in a town small enough you could run anywhere, any time, and be safe. I had a consistent running partner who was very encouraging. I would get home from work, throw on my running gear, and head out the door, covering anywhere from three to seven miles. More if we were training for a half marathon. I loved running for the challenge (as I talked about in Marathon Training:  The Beginning) and the endorphins. It made me healthier, made me feel better, and made me sleep better.

Now….it’s different.

Now we live in a big city where it’s not a good idea to go running certain places or certain times, at least not by myself. My husband has been kind enough to join me, even though he doesn’t like running (I think he does it because he loves me and knows it’s good for him). We run one mile, twice, during the week. I try to cover more than two miles on the weekend. I know, being in a transitional stage of life makes it harder to find time for running. I miss it.

There is one thing I have learned from this alteration in my running-side of life:

When we want something to remain in our lives badly enough, we’ll surprise ourselves with how we make it work.

I am not a morning person. And I always declared I could never get up early on a regular basis to run. Until now.

I don’t like getting up at 5:30 a.m. My husband likes it even less. BUT we still do it. To run. There is absolutely no other time we could run. Do I think it’s worth it? Yes.

How many times in life are we put in a position where we have to make something work? If it’s worth enough to us, we do just that… Make it work. Many times we don’t push ourselves the way we could, because we don’t have to. Why do we have to wait until the “have to” point? Just imagine what could happen if we push ourselves before reaching that point… What greatness could be accomplished!?