Morning Hacks?

Grand Marais Sunrise on Superior.  Not cropped.Today The Huffington Post shared advice for making the most of your mornings.  They call the tips “life hacks” and I guess I don’t know what that means.  (Do you?)   Most of the tips are that sort of inane stuff that people like to say they do, but don’t.  Much of it is a lot of hooey.  Does it really make sense, for example, to get up a 4:30 in the morning, so you can have more so-called “me” time?  Screw that.  I get my best me time in bed!   And you’re welcome to read that however you choose.

There is some fun in this article, however, and in that there is some value.  Before we get to the fun, let’s go through the bulk of the advice which reads like a chore.  (Apparently making mornings exciting is not the point.)

Tip #1:  Eat breakfast.  Yes, ok.  Eat breakfast.  Who doesn’t?  Eggs and hot dogs for me!  Sometimes pancakes and omelettes.  English muffin sandwiches, too!  But never cold cereal.  Yuck!  That is a good nighttime snack.  And fruit and yogurt?  Come on.  If you claim to start your day with fruit and yogurt, you’re trying too hard.

English: The face of a black windup alarm clock

A Sensible Time to Meet the Day.

I have already forgotten what tips #2 and #3 were all about, but I’m sure we’ll come back to them…

Oh, Tip #4 about snooze buttons.  Here’s a good one.  If you like to hit snooze, they suggest you set your alarm clock for an earlier time so you can hit snooze AND still get up on time.  Who really thinks that will work?  The whole point of hitting snooze is to postpone getting up.  People don’t hit snooze because it is fun, they do it because they feel they must.  This one kind of reminds me of the advice a shoe salesman gave me:  Buying two pairs of shoes makes your shoes last twice as long.  (Don’t think about it too much.)

For the record, I have never slept with an alarm clock.  I don’t need one.  And so the snooze thing does not apply.  Although I went on a vacation once with someone who hit snooze every ten minutes for about 90 minutes.  When I suggested that if she tell me when she really wanted to wake up I would make sure she was up, the vacation almost ended.   I wonder if she is writing advice columns today.  She might have written Tip #4.

Back to Tip #2 and it must be important because it is second on the list.  Tip #2 suggests prepping your wardrobe, lunch and things the night before so it is all ready to go in the morning.  Really?  Who plans that far ahead?  Mornings should be a time of awakening and thus discovery.  Discovering that your suit of clothes and lunch and everything are set and ready to go would be like waking up and discovering your a Calvinist.   I just don’t like that tip at all.  Skip it.

Good Morning SunshineTip #5:  Drink a large glass of ice water.  Ok.  I like that one.  I agree with it.  I’m not even sure why I’m writing about it.  Can’t snark or hack this one.  It is a good tip.  I drink iced Gerolsteiner mineral water, by the way.  It eliminates the need to plan the night before.  Just knowing it is there is like spending the night with a girl who said yes.  Good stuff.

Then there are a lot of general tips about having time for yourself, going for a walk, meditating and so on.  These must only apply exclusively to people who already live lives that are not their own.  (This article seems custom made for neurotics, except for the water tip.)  The simple solution to making each of those “moment for yourself” tips irrelevant is living alone.  Then you will have all kinds of time for yourself!  My advice, if you’re really looking for a morning hack, is move out and simplify, baby!

I suppose we could write a set of tips for people who don’t feel that life has been stolen by other people.  Such a list might include advice like:  “Tip #1:  Call mother.”  “Tip #2:  Get caught up on Facebook and update your status.”  “Tip #3:  Drink a large glass of ice water and bourbon.”

Enough of that…

Let’s jump ahead to my favorite tip of them all.  My favorite tip of them all, however, is Tip #9:  If you work out in the mornings, try sleeping in your workout gear.  (?!)  That’s beautiful.  I am guessing if you can apply that tip to your morning routine chances are good you can skip all the tips about finding private time for reasons I just explained above:  You’re alone!  (“Tip #4:  Meet people.”)

I don’t care what kind of workout gear you wear, can you imagine your partner warming up to the idea of you sleeping in your gym clothes?  I will admit, there are some good looking spandex sets around the gym, but…really?  No, no, no!  And I presume you’re going to wash your workout gear daily.  And what about head bands and wrist bands?  Nothing is said about shoes either.  Maybe most importantly, who wants to go to the gym looking like…well, looking like you slept in your gym clothes?

Bad idea.  Very bad.  Scratch that one.  It is funny.  I love it.  But I worry some people might read that tip and not see the gag.  Back away quickly from Tip #9 and don’t look back.

You know, I don’t want to totally shoot down this well-intended space filler (whatever happened to Greeking?) because tips are great and we can all use a bit of advice from time to time.  But do you know what I am going to do right now?  I am going to stay up for a few more hours.  I might even enjoy a bowl of Cheerios.  Then I’ll sleep sans vetements de sport unbothered by thoughts of alarms and snoozes and wake up fresh as a spring daisy prepared to pull together a tasteful ensemble for the day and all the while doing so while enjoying all the me time I need and boiling a hot dog.


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