Tuesday, December 20, 2005

The Secret of Success

Last night's "Peanuts" cartoon hit a little close to home. There was Sally announcing, "They say the secret of success is to get up early in the morning." And there was I...er, I mean, Charlie Brown, in bed, saying, "So?" And Sally exuberantly replying, "I'm up!"

I've never been a morning person. In my childhood, Mom would call me time and again until I finally pried myself out of bed with barely enough time to throw on clothes and race for the bus stop. (Once, my father tried a different ploy, standing silently at the end of my bed until I opened my eyes, then quietly said, "You know, people die in bed," then turned and walked out.) In college I was careful not to schedule an 8:00 class. When I became gainfully employed, I often barely made it to work on time, and then only because my husband (who was a morning person) was up first to make the coffee and let out the dogs.

Now that I have no place to be by a certain time, I find it incredibly hard to leave the warmth and comfort and drowsy dreams of my bed. Friends know not to call before 9:00 (not necessarily because I won't be up but because I won't be functional yet). I schedule appointments for no earlier than 10:00 if I can. It gets a little embarrassing at times, and it's not that I can't rouse myself out earlier. It's just that I know my body well and it prefers reading until 1:00 a.m. and hitting the snooze alarm numerous times before slowly easing into the day. And wouldn't you know it, this morning I hit that snooze alarm more times than usual and really did sleep in.

This is part of my problem lately with discipline. I know from experience that when I force myself out of bed even an hour earlier than usual, I am amazed at how much more I can accomplish. The earlier start seems to have an exponential degree of benefit. If I want to be more successful in my creative life, I need to be less of a Charlie Brown and more of a Sally (I'm up!) Now, if I can just convince myself of that tomorrow morning when the alarm goes off...

Bottom line (and no news here), we all have the same 24 hours in a day. It's how we choose to use them that makes the difference. More on this tomorrow. In spite of my late start, I got quite a bit done today, including putting the last few stitches in that little quilt - which I realize now I should really call a banner - and getting it and the other gift wrapped and in the mail. Pictures! Pictures! I know you all love to see pictures and I think it's safe to at least show this detail of one of the blocks.


Lisa Call said...

I get up at 5:45. 15 minutes to get ready for work including shower, 30 minutes to quilt, 30 minutes to cook the kids a hot breakfast and make lunches and then we are out the door at 7am.

I envy your 10am wakeup time. Although even with no alarm I'm up by 6:30.

I suppose I could sleep another half hour but I find those 30 minutes quilting in the morning to be vital to a happy day.

The Idaho Beauty said...

Wait a minute! My wake-up time is a tad earlier than 10:00. But to be honest, I'm rarely ready to do any productive work until 10:00. Not safe to operate machinery or make decisions until then...But I DO read first thing in the morning and can even handle certain paperwork before 10:00.

Maybe if I'd had kids I'd have gotten into the early to rise and be efficient routine. Nah - probably not! While you envy me, I admire you and your drive.