April Habit: 8-Hour April and a March Habit Recap

+ Yay! It’s a new month which means a new monthly habit and a recap of last month’s. These monthly experiments help me build healthy habits, break unhealthy ones or just learn more about myself so I can figure out what’s really essential!

Peanut is almost 1! I can’t believe it and I also can’t imagine my life without him… he has been the biggest blessing. AND I haven’t slept through the night in a year. Nursing, teething, what have you. Honestly, I feel pretty great physically but I know the lack of sleep has worn on me… on us.

But now we’re all sleeping through and it’s a dream. <3 Sleeping enough hasn’t been the priority for us in a while but that’s changing today! For the month of April, the goal is that each of us gets 8 hours of sleep a night: 8-Hour April!

We’ll do a few things to help make this happen:
+ No screens 30 minutes before bed! We’ll make the time at the end of the day to calm down and practice an Evening Routine. “A good evening ritual helps you close the book on the day, prepare for more restorative sleep, and set yourself up for a fabulous tomorrow!”

+ We’ll track our time asleep, most likely using an app. We already use Glow Baby for Peanut and have used Hello for ourselves in the past. Any recommendations if we’re not into wearables?

+ Since we have a pretty reliable alarm clock these days (<3), we have to get to bed a little earlier to make sure we reach our goal. And that means in bed at least 10 minutes before we’d like to be asleep.

+ If we don’t get 8 hours because of work or things that go bump in the night, we’ll stay in loungewear and nap with Peanut until we do, if possible. (Unfortunately, Greg and most people can only do this on weekends.)

This has been an amazing year but not without its challenges. Maybe this experiment will help us make up for one of the hardest aspects of caring for an infant. You can make up for a year without enough sleep in a month, right? :D Okay good… I’m already feeling more rested.

Reflections on our March Habit: Morning Meditation:
For the month of March, we reinvested in daily meditation. Greg did it daily before lunch and I got back into meditating first thing in the morning.

Meditation March was so great. The best time to add a new habit is first thing in the morning. Waking up is the biggest trigger of our day and what we do right after is easiest to sustain. I had a 100% success rate and felt really grounded this month:
+ I was more engaged and less reactive.
+ I was able to pay attention without always creating stories.
+ I smiled more.
+ It’s probably a coincidence but Peanut seemed happier, calmer and he also slept better!
+ And I noticed that the days when it was hard to do were the days that I needed it the most.

Greg was almost as successful and loved meditating before lunch. He noticed he ate less and more mindfully. It’s so interesting… he said he would gather a plate of food before meditation and then look at the plate right after and feel like he took too much! What a smart habit for him.

We felt such obvious benefits that we’re both going to continue the habit. I’ll need to find a new space as the boys aren’t really up and out when I get out of bed. ;) I’d also like to work up to 20 minutes of meditation in the morning but will probably wait until I’m not nursing. What a joy to have this little pocket of time for myself!

Namaste. <3