“My routine can happen anywhere! And it naturally adapts to the people around me; I always pick up new temporary habits.” – Alicia Sully Share this quote on Twitter

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Alicia Sully

What is your morning routine?

First I brush my teeth and wash my face. I take a shower and wash my hair every other day like clockwork. If I’m on a shoot, I’m usually the first one up because I’m excited and anxious and want to review the plan. After I’m finished with the washroom I wake my colleagues, like their own personal alarm clock.

How has your morning routine changed over recent years?

One thing that has changed in the past seven years is I now think it’s more important to eat something at breakfast time. It happened when I moved to Africa and my survival instincts took over!

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That said, occasionally I realize if I eat breakfast, I won’t be hungry at lunch, so I don’t. I prefer to have one large meal a day.

What time do you go to sleep?

I can be fine on very little sleep. In fact, there was a time in my life, for a year, when I would be awake for two days and then sleep for twelve hours. I thought it was beneficial to have a longer day, you discover more when you aren’t interrupted by sleep.

Nowadays I don’t usually choose to sleep, I just get tired, and fall asleep whatever I’m doing. That said, when operating machinery it’s good to get at least six hours, so that’s a goal I loosely try to get if I’m shooting.

Do you use an alarm to wake you up in the morning, and if so do you ever hit the snooze button?

Last year I got married. Pedro has changed my routine, mostly with the snooze button.

I used to hate that button because I dislike alarm sounds, especially alarming ones that make me jump half the way to the ceiling! But in the past six months I’ve actually become accustomed to him setting the alarm an hour before you want to wake up and pushing snooze four times.

How soon after waking up do you have breakfast, and what do you typically have?

I usually eat a small breakfast, unless I ate too much the night before! (I’m like a camel, I retain food). On the contrary, if I know I will eat a lot for lunch I will just have something like a glass of juice for breakfast. If I eat too much I fall asleep.

How soon do you check your phone in the morning, either for calls/messages or social media and news?

It’s the first thing I do after turning off the alarm. I check email, if there are many I’ll skim them. If anything looks urgent I will reply right away. I might also say good morning to my colleagues on WhatsApp or see if anything happened while I was sleeping (we’re operating on multiple timezones).

I also have the habit of listening to a five minute news podcast as I get ready.

What and when is your first drink in the morning?

I often forget to drink, but sometimes I wake up thirsty and drink water immediately.

Someone will make coffee if we have it, otherwise we will find it, time allowing. I prefer coffee with milk that early, otherwise it’s acidic for my stomach. That said, I don’t need coffee in the morning.

On days you’re not settled in your home, are you able to adapt your routine to fit in with a different environment?

I don’t have a home (I’m nomadic, on average I reach twenty countries a year).

I’m always staying with friends or people we work with. Sometimes we have our own room, sometimes we don’t. My routine can happen anywhere! And it naturally adapts to the people around me; I always pick up new temporary habits. For example, for the last two days I’ve been squeezing fresh orange juice in the morning.

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