Are you a person who always stays up late and ends up sleeping in more days than you would like to? That used to be me. I have always been a person who loves staying up all night, and as a result, I would sleep in until 10-11am the next day. On top of that, it would take me a long time to actually fully wake up and start my day. One day I decided that this wasn’t working anymore, and I felt like I was wasting too much time living like this. I was determined, and changing these habits transformed my life. Now I love waking up early, but it was a struggle getting here and I had to train myself to be a morning person. People tell you that in order to be a morning person you just have to go to bed earlier, but if you are used to staying up late, it is not that easy. It took me some time, but I learned a few tricks on the way that made it easier. So if you are looking to be a bit more of an early riser, then this is the article for you.
First of all, what’s the point of being a morning person? This answer is going to be different for everyone, and you have to find what motivates you. You might be able to achieve goals faster, find yourself being on time more, and be more positive throughout the day. You want to maximize the time that you have, cause we’re only given so much. You want to have as much control of your life as possible and have time for all the things you want to accomplish. Waking up early in the morning allows you to do that. Start by asking yourself “Would waking up earlier benefit my life and goals?” The answer to this question is what will keep you motivated.
I watched this Ted Talk recently from Filipe Castro Matos about how waking up early in the morning can change your life, and it was very inspiring. Think about any goals you have achieved or goals you want to achieve, they all require you to step out of your comfort zone and really give it your all. Waking up in the morning is just like any other goal. If it is something you want to achieve you have to work for it.
The hardest part of being a morning person is the moment when you actually have to wake up. When that alarm goes off in the morning, I am never excited about it, but honestly, this is the only painful aspect of waking up early. If this is you, think about the benefits of it, and you will see that these outweigh the hard part of having to leave your bed. Motivation has to be strong to leave your comfy bed. Also, if you get into the routine of waking up early, your body is going to get used to this and wake up earlier by itself.
After you find your reason for waking up early, pick a day when you are going to do it. If Monday is your ideal day of waking up early, then start preparing yourself on Sunday already. To do this, relax at night, put on some soft music, dim the lights, and maybe take a hot bath. All of these simple tricks will make it easier for you to go to sleep, and the better you sleep, the easier it will be to wake up the next morning. Also, try to eliminate any stress by preparing the things you need for the next day. For example, choosing an outfit or going over notes for a class are things that can be stressful to have to do in the morning. The more things you have to do in the morning, the easier it is going to be to just hit snooze to not have to deal with it. Lastly, have a time when you want to be in bed with your eyes shut, and try to stick to that.
A very extreme tip, but one that I have found works really well, is that if you want to wake up early on a Monday, start by waking up even earlier on Sunday already, let’s say 5 am (and make sure to stay awake all day). That way, you will be tired on Sunday night and with no doubt go to bed early. If this is too extreme for you, try waking up fifteen minutes earlier every day. This way your body will have time to adapt and before you know it you will wake up at 6 am every day!
My next tip for you is to plan something for the morning that you are really excited about. It can be something as simple as going out to buy a coffee, taking a morning walk, or meditating for a while. After that, try to plan what you are going to do with your time so that you will use it in the most effective way. Are you going to work on homework? Do you want to start working out? Create a new blog? You can do whatever you want!
One thing that is so important for my morning routine, but that might seem really stupid, is to make my bed every day. I watched a by Admiral William McRaven about how making your bed in the morning you can change the world. Basically what he was saying in this speech was that when you make your bed in the morning, that is one small task that you have achieved that makes you feel good. If you cannot complete a simple task like making your bed, how are you going to be able to complete all these harder tasks in life? Making your bed will encourage you to do more tasks. I feel like this also makes you feel a lot more organized, and I have noticed that it is actually good for improving self-discipline.
The most important tip I have for you is DO NOT HIT SNOOZE. I cannot emphasize the importance of this enough. The days I hit the snooze button are the days I end up sleeping in. It is just too hard waking up when that alarm goes off a second or even a third time. I know it feels really good sleeping those extra ten minutes, but when you wake up again you are going to be even more tired. Rafael Pelayo who is a sleep specialist at the Stanford University Sleep Medicine Center says that when you snooze and then fall back asleep, you are going to wake up feeling more tired. The reason behind that is that when we wake ourselves up and we hit that alarm and tell it to snooze and we fall back asleep, our body starts falling back into a deeper sleep. We do this only to bring ourselves back up out of it another 10 minutes later which is messing with our mind and body, making us confused and waking up feeling unrested.
So if you want to become a morning person, find your motivation and try these tricks. It will change your life!
Bonus Tip: This is not a tip for everyone, but something I do every morning is to go straight to the beach and sit in the water for 15 minutes. And yes, it is very cold, but there is nothing that wakes me up more! After I always feel super relaxed and clear minded.