If you listen to The Crossover Show Podcast (and why wouldn’t you?), you may have heard me talk about a book I read recently, The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life (Before 8AM). I’ve also mentioned it on the my Facebook page. This book has been quite the game changer, though, and two quick mentions didn’t seem to do it justice, so I wanted to take time to give it the attention it deserves.
Let me start by saying, I know. For those of us in civil service working shift work, 0800 may not be something we’re used to.
Not to worry, there’s a fix. I know cops don’t like change and they certainly don’t like things outside of their comfort zone, but I’ve discovered that we never grow if there isn’t a bit of discomfort, so put your cynicism and doubts aside and listen to my experience…perhaps something can change for you as well.
I’m going to start by saying swing shift has always been my favorite shift. Working 1500 to 0100 was awesome. Getting the paper bullshit details out of the way when June and Ward Cleaver came home to discover their home had been burgled and getting that paper written before the sun went down was great. Because night-time brought deuce hunting. It was a blast.
Of course, that was pre-kids.
These days, being assigned to the motor, I work day shift. 0600 to 1600. I’ve tried other variances like 0700 to 1700 or 0800 to 1800.
They didn’t work as well for the family…so 0600 to 1600 is it for me.
I’ve read a lot of my online mentors talking about waking up early. I’m part of a FB group in which there is a subset called the 0500 club. As is my purview, I’ve taken to paying attention when things start happening in and around my life in such a way as to make me take notice.
Hal talks about getting up an hour early to begin your day based on your decision, not the alarm’s or your boss’. Well that’s just freaking adorable for someone who works a 9 to 5, right?
I’m 10-8 at 0600! I already get up at 0500 to get to work! Does this guy expect me to get up at 0400?!
But then I started inching my way backward. I started at 0445. Then 0430. Now, on my work days, I consistently get up at 0400.
You may be thinking, “MC! What in the blue hell do you do at 0400 in the f’n morning?!?”
I do the S.A.V.E.R.S. as laid out by Hal.
Stay with me, kids, this may seem a bit esoteric/touchy-feely, but I assure you it’s been incredible.
SAVERS stands for Silence (meditation), Affirmation, Visualization, Exercise, Reading, and Scribing (writing for you beat cops).
Here’s my morning routine:
- 0400 – 0415: shower, shave, dress, brush teeth
- 0415 – 0430: meditate
- 0430 – 0435: affirmations (think a non-cheesy Stuart Smalley)
- 0435 – 0440: visualization (literally imagine myself accomplishing goals I have)
- 0440 – 0450: reading (usually doubled between whatever book I’m reading and a bit of the Bible)
- 0450 – 0500: journal
- 0500 – 0515: yoga
- 0515 – 0530: breakfast
- 0530: leave for work
I’ve discovered that Hal’s theory about getting up with intention of my volition has changed my outlook about the rest of the entire day. I don’t get up because I have to. I get up because I want to.
For example, this post is being written at 2100 hours the night before it posts. I will be up (rested, refreshed and ready to meet the day) at 0400 tomorrow. Seven hours from this very moment.
And I’m looking forward to it.
So…swing shifters…graveyarders. What do you do?!
No matter what time you wake up, get up an hour earlier. I dare you to give it a try. Read Hal’s book.
It may very well be as much of a game changer for you as it has been for me. I’ve been doing this consistently (for the most part) since March 8th…well over two months. I’m thrilled with the results.