Waking Up Early

How to Be Way More Productive

November 5, 2018

I don't enjoy waking up early at all. I would say I am laser focused the minute I wake up until about lunch time, but I don't like setting alarms. I work from home and I don't conform to any schedule, so when my body feels like it has gotten enough rest, is usually when I wake up. Traditionally around 8:30-9:00am, naturally. 

As a big Casey Neistat fan, I recently watched his video where he sits down with a Navy Seal and they talk about the benefits of waking up early. You can watch this video here. I've always been highly impressed by Casey Neistat, not only because he is a fantastic creator, but also because of his ability to juggle so much, consistently, on a daily basis. At one point for over a year he was daily vlogging, running a startup while also making time for his wife and newborn baby and somehow finding time to exercise and travel.

I'm not married nor do I have kids (unless you count Porkchop), but I do have a full time job. I constantly struggle with the concept of not having enough time in my day to complete all the things I'd like to do. I'd love to do daily vlogs because the idea of creating and finishing something every single day sounds awesome. But, it also sounds impossible when I am not able to even post a video every week, consistently. This consistency problem is mainly due to the fact that it takes me 3-4 days to record, edit and publish a video and when I have a crazy week at work, finding moments in my day to dedicate to that, sometimes just doesn't happen. 

You might remember towards the end of the summer, I thought a potential solution to that would be to Live Stream my day. I would be able to get work done, while also delivering content, consistently. After dedicating almost a month to that, I became embarrassed by the quality of the content I was releasing. And then, it became even more obvious when I started receiving a lot of negative feedback. After a while, I thought to myself, this isn't working and I put that on hold.

A new idea I had, which I announced last week was that I wanted to commit to daily vlogging for the entire month of December. It should not take me 3-4 days to make a video. That's too long. The only way I'm going to get more comfortable being on camera, the only way I'm going to get faster and more efficient at editing, is if I just do more of it. I want to be in the daily mindset of creating content from my day, everyday. The only problem is finding time in my day to do this.

This is where Casey Neistat comes back into the picture. This man wakes up everyday between 4:00-5:00am, to get work done. He does about 3-4 hours of work, before his day even begins, distraction free. It was one of those things, where I was like "wow that's impressive, but there's no way I could do that" and then I stumbled upon this video by Sorelle Amore. Another creator who was also impressed by Casey, specifically because of the same video I watched and decided to challenge herself by doing exactly what Casey does, or what she refers to as #LIVINGLIKECASEY. I think it was after watching that video that it really sunk in. It took her documenting her struggles to really have an impact on me. It wasn't easy for her, but she kept raving about the benefits of doing so. Her productivity increased and well so did everything else.

So on Tuesday, I thought let's give this thing a try.

I woke up at 6:30am.

Not quite, 4:00-5:00am, but it was 2 hours earlier than I usually wake up. My e-mails usually start pouring in around 9:00am and my texts, calls and social media notifications come in around 11:00am and spray themselves throughout my day until I go to bed around midnight.

There was something to being up early that changed the game for me. Firstly, I didn't want to be awake, but by forcing myself to be awake, it took discipline and that then carried throughout my day. I immediately hopped on my computer and killed my daily todo list before 9:00am. Having completed everything I wanted to do to complete for that day, I started working on the tasks I scheduled for the next day. By lunchtime I had completed two days worth of work. 

I had edited an entire video in a few hours as opposed to a few days. By being up this early, I had eliminated all distractions from my work. And when you are up that early, there's really nothing for you to do, but get shit done. 

I continued to wake up earlier and earlier throughout the rest of the week and I'm happy to say I had the most productive week this year. Finally, a solution to my time problem. Who would've thought?

Suddenly, the idea of making daily vlogs for an entire month, sounds completely possible. I'm getting excited.

So, if you are currently struggling to find time in your day to do more, try waking up earlier than you usually do. Then, let me know about your experience in the comments below. I want to hear about it! 

(wal•do) — Person
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