I’ve always been a morning person. And I’ve always been a person who enjoys staying up late, tinkering with stuff and hacking on things. Until our son was born last year, I’ve always had the pleasure of being free in the way I spend my time. Belonging to the group of people that need some time to oneself on a every day base this suited me quite well. If you talk to other parents one common thing you’ll hear is that with a child around suddenly the physics of time change and time is basically even more scarce than before. For the first months after his birth I was struggling a bit and didn’t find the right allocation between work, taking care of the household, spending time with my son and actually doing something for myself. Last fall I stumbled across a few blogposts on establishing a morning routine. One of the podcasts I listen to (it’s on german) also had an episode on that: Wie der Tag beginnt, so wird er auch verlaufen.

I started and set out to establish a morning routine. The baseline for this was, that on weekends I’m the one who is responsible for our son when he gets up. Currently he wakes up between 5:30 and 6:30, so my goal was: Be ready for him by 6:00 and basically have had my fair share of time.

I started setting my alarm clock to 5:00 AM on each and every day. During the week this gives me time to do various things before walking over to my desk and start the workday.

My morning routine can basically be referred to as: Sharpening the saw (readers of the seven habits, will know what I’m referring to)

The idea of sharpening the saw is that only a saw that is really sharp can cut down a tree in the most efficient way. In order to stay on top of things, you need to make sure to treat yourself well.

In the reading session I either re-cap items I’ve listened to in the previous day (I listen to a lot of audiobooks and mark chapters / clips that I think, I should revisit to take notes) or I read papers / blogpost that I put in my backlog over time. The last item is that I look onto the day that is about to start and organize my thoughts over it.

On at least four days per week I then switch to sports.

The good thing about getting up at 5 AM is that I actually need to make sure to go to bed on a regular time. This leads to a regular sleep cycle which has proven to be helpful for numerous reasons. I track my sleep to make sure, I get at least six hours of sleep on average. The six hours are currently my sweet spot.