1. Q: How many years young are you and what is your living situation?
1. 42. I live with my husband of 14 years, two step-kids, 16 and 17, who live with us full time, and three dogs.
2. Q: What's the biggest challenge you faced in changing your morning routine? How have you dealt with it/got over it/are still dealing with it?
2. Seven years ago my morning routine went from on point to the snooze button becoming my kryptonite, I was hitting it three or four times every morning, who even DOES THAT! It was the first missed sign of something being wrong. With my kryptonite in full swing, I rushed through everything in the morning, I felt like I couldn’t keep up, I forgot things and the stress was making me a nightmare to be around. The worst part, those feelings stayed with me ALLLL DAYYYY LONG.
My mornings getting screwed up was the least of the missed signs, which culminated in being diagnosed with a brain tumor, which led to brain surgery. Brain surgery changes your WHOLE life, from panic attacks to being "bone deep tired", not one part of my life today is the same as it was seven years ago, that has been the BIGGEST CHALLENGE to changing my routine. My life changed and those changes were crippling me. But I probably could have managed life by changing my wake up time, because in the big scheme of things, my snooze button obsession was the LEAST of my "New Me" changes. But then one of my dogs got sick and I NEEDED that 30-40 minutes back in the morning to deal with him.
Getting over it - As a "survivor" of sorts, people actually tell me to "get over it", you look "fine," that was "so long ago" and a litany of other useful things. But this was something I could get over... I just had to realize that “just ten more minutes” was negative talk, it was a life stealer, not just a time stealer. I had to find a positive talk to counter that, after 7 days I found it, “look at what you accomplish when you don’t hit the button." Dealing with it - I still deal with the “just 10 more minutes,” negative talk. So I have learned to forgive myself for those mornings where I hit the snooze once, because ONE is far fewer than FOUR. I will never get my "Old Life" back, there isn't a journal out there named Be You After Brain Surgery… , but learning to deal with my negative talk has also been a nice little life changer. Thanks Habit Nest!
3. Q: What time did you wake up and go to sleep before you started using the Morning Sidekick Journal, and what time do you wake up and sleep now?
3. My “go to bed time” hasn’t changed, it’s between 8pm-9pm, depending on what activities we have on the family calendar.Before I started using the journal, my alarm would go off at 5am, at which time I would commence with the snooze button hitting, and to lay it all out there for you I broke a couple alarm clocks banging on that button. I would actually get up around 5:30am, if I was lucky. Now my Fitbit wakes me up with a silent vibrating alarm set for 4:25am, it is actually working better than my actual alarm clock.
4. Q: What did your mornings look like before you started using the Morning Sidekick Journal? What do your mornings look like now?
4. Six years post op, I was resigned to my mornings being screwed up. When one of my dogs was diagnosed with an eating disorder a year ago, and put on medication it was time to fix my mornings because his medicine now dictated my mornings, as he has to take 30 minutes before he eats. So before the journal my mornings of hitting the snooze for 30-40 minutes meant I was rushing to get my personal morning routine done so I could deal with him. Some mornings I was so late I would skip the 30 minutes and feed him after 15, and he would have problems. I was hurting him because I couldn’t get my behind out of bed. I was missing the mark and that wasn’t acceptable… My new wake up time is 4:25am, I do guided meditation for 30 minutes, still lying in bed, which to be honest was all I was doing by hitting the snooze button. I have apps on my phone and every week I pick a different mediation. I hook headphones to my phone so I am starting my day with 30 minutes of a positive messages AND when the real alarm goes off at 5am I get up with it.
5. Q: In one sentence, what's your favorite thing about the Morning Sidekick Journal?
5. Okay, no judging but I love the feel of the journal, the actual feel of it, the cover and the paper make me want to use it, like those materials were chosen to make something special.
6. Q: How long have you been using the Morning Sidekick Journal?
6. Since December 31, 2018. AND since I’m pretty sure you are going to ask about the apps I use… While they are no longer available in the Apple App store they are available in ITunes. But I use Surf City Apps, the ones I have are Pain Relief, Be Debt-Free, Lose Weight, Eat Healthy, Mindful Eating, Sleep Well (I use this one when I am having problems falling asleep at night …works like a DREAM, pun intended) Enjoy Exercise, Procrastination, Migraine Relief, Attract Wealth. Then in ITunes I also have Relieve Depression, Self Esteem and End Anxiety. I have tried to use the “Calm” app but it has a yearly fee attached to it and I’m not ready to commit to that, but I hear good things about it.
7. Q: How has using the Morning Sidekick Journal and doing your morning routine impacted your life overall?
7. Since using the journal, not only am I getting up in enough time to do what I need to do for my dog, I am no longer rushed because I gave myself an extra 30-40 minutes in the morning. The real reward though, hasn’t been in my mornings, it’s been that I have lost the ALLLL DAYYYY LONG feeling of being rushed and like I can't catch up, and while no one is stress free but I am not crippled by it. That along with the guided morning meditation have made a huge impact, I will never be the same as before brain tumors and surgery became a normal part of my vernacular, but I can be better by making small changes that have big impacts. Another GREAT addition to my life is YEARLY MRI's to see if I have any new tumors, I talk to my surgeon every year about the negatives I see and he says "You do know you had brain surgery, forgive yourself." Like that explains everything.... I actually had a moment of panic at day 15, when I realized that in 51 days, my journal would be done… How was I going to stay on track? Then I heard that there was a new journal, Morning Mastery, I ordered two, that’s 120 days of staying on track. At 42, I’m a lifer….a lifer at getting up in the morning on time, with a routine that works for the "New Me." I am meditating consistently, and with purpose, and I am forgiving myself for ya know "having brain surgery”.