Blogger, Enthusiasm Enthusiast, Motivator
Megan is the founder of TipsyWriter, a website with tips for productivity, organization, motivation, relationships and overall success.
After graduation from Emory U, she packed up everything and moved to San Francisco where she is currently loving life with her boyfriend and dog (who totally believes she is people!).
My personal practice is…….
My personal practice is one that anyone can do – and, you know, maybe that’s the beauty of it. Anyways, my personal practice is to wake up in the morning and do something I really want to do. Most of the time, for me, it’s reading. Other times it’s going for a walk outside in the cool air. And even other times it’s watching a television show I have been meaning to get to. But you’ll notice, the things that are not part of this practice are activities like working or checking email or making important phone calls. Those things can wait – this time is about finding my center, my focus, and setting a solid baseline for the day. If I can do this, I can at least say that (even if the rest of the day is bad) I had a morning that I truly enjoyed.
How did you discover your practice?
I don’t think I set out to find a “practice,” but I did realize that when I woke up in the morning and the first thing I did was stressful or something I hated then it really set a bad precedent for the remainder of the day. So I sat back and asked myself, “why am I having so many bad days?” Being someone who googles everything, I immediately googled something alone the lines of how do you have a good day – and you know what it suggested? Nearly everything I read suggested that you start with “those things that you don’t want to do so that the day gets easier as it goes” and while it’s probably not the worst idea, I realized that it didn’t work for me. So I pretty much ignored that and decided to try starting my day with what I DO want to do instead. I’d say it was a pretty good idea on my part, but I do realize that it might not be what works for everybody.
Why do you practice?
Why does anyone choose to practice anything? Because it works for me! If this hadn’t worked for me, I would have stopped. Life is too short to continue actions that don’t work. If you try enough methods, something’s bound to eventually click for you. Like I said, my practice very well may not be right for everyone but if you keep trying out different things you’re bound to eventually find something that’s perfect for you.
How frequently and for how long do you practice?
I would be lying if I said that this is something that happens every morning, but that is my aim. Unfortunately sometimes you have to do other things or you oversleep and simply don’t have the time. That’s the beauty of life and we have to learn to adapt. However, I do aim to “practice” every morning because
As for how long I practice, I really don’t have a set time. Sometimes it’s the length of a television show, sometimes it’s until I feel like I’m awake enough to function, and other days it’s until it just feels right. Sometimes you just know.
What’s something that gets in the way of your practice and how to you move through it?
Like I said before, life is constantly changing and if you don’t learn to adapt then you’re gonna end up in a miserable slump. But of course, sometimes things happen and you can’t practice as you had hoped so you move along. When I can, I try to fit in that bit of quiet, personal time later on in the day. Other days it just doesn’t happen. But part of the practice is not to get hung up on those sorts of things and try to just let them roll off of you as best you can. It’s all about having that person sense of peace – if you’re able to find that, it doesn’t really matter how you choose to go about it.
What supports you in staying committed to your practice?
I usually work from home so this is helpful in finding time to practice. I don’t always get to choose what time to start working for the day, but most of the time my schedule is pretty flexible and allows me to just “go with the flow” of things. That and the people in my life. I don’t surround myself with people all of the time as it’s just not something that I find fulfilling or even super enjoyable. That being said, the people who are a large part of my life are all very understanding of the fact that sometimes I just need to take a step back and recenter my focus. I’ll be the first to tell you that sometimes I get discouraged, snappy, or unfocused but usually taking a little while to get my mind straight again will allow me to be a much more enjoyable person to be around.
What role does your practice play in your work?
Like I said, I primarily work from home so it can sometimes be difficult to separate that home-time from work-time when it all takes place in the same location. But when I have this practice in place it allows me to mentally separate the two, thus making it much easier to complete work.
Describe someone you know whose practice inspires you.
This is going to sound kind of crazy but this practice belongs to someone who once interviewed me for a job that I didn’t end up accepting. The nature of this interview was that he would ask me a question and both he and I would answer it. One of the first questions was the typical “what is your weakness and how do you deal with it?” sort of question but what really stood out to me. He said that he often struggles with being a morning person when it seemed that all of his colleagues were morning people and he dealt with it through a practice of doing everything that he could do by himself early in the morning before everyone else woke up. This way, he could respond to all of his emails, etc. first thing and not have to worry about finding uninterrupted time later in the day once things got busy. I know, this seems to contradict my own practice but what I find truly respectable is that he took what was once a problem, found a method that really worked the best for him, and made the best of it. That’s what’s important.
A practice I’d like to explore is….
I’ve been thinking about joining a yoga studio. I think it’s something that works for a lot of people and it really capitalizes on the idea of finding your center and focus. It’s not exactly the same as my own practice but there are a lot of overlapping parts so I think it might be worth a try. You never know, I may absolutely hate it but I’ll never know until I give it a chance.
Anything else you’d like to share about practice.
No matter what you read online or what someone says works for them, don’t subscribe to something until you find out what really works for you. I personally love my practice but that’s because it’s something that I really benefit from. Some people go for a 10 mile run first thing in the morning. It doesn’t work for me, but I can’t hate on those for whom it does work. Whatever it is, just do it. Who cares what it is or who it does and doesn’t work for. If it works for you and you love and benefit from it, then practice your heart out. And if ever you find yourself forcing yourself to do it or is ceases to work for you, then stop. Simple as that.
More from Megan and her tips for productivity, organization, motivation, relationships, and overall success can be found at TipsyWriter.com.