Are you a morning person? Or do you find yourself staying up all hours of the night and sleeping in well past noon? I used to be that person, and sometimes I still am. I got sick and tired of sleeping in and feeling like I was missing out on the whole day. I wanted to be the kind of person who got up at the crack dawn and watched the sun come up with a cup of coffee in hand, steam swirling gently up from the cup.
I daydreamed about climbing out of bed, faint gray light filtering in through the windows, still dark but just bright enough to see the outlines and shapes of the furniture in my house. I envisioned myself slowly creeping through the house, settling into my office (or most likely the couch) brainstorming creative ideas, jotting them down on paper, and getting all my work done in the morning so I wouldn’t feel rushed at the end of the day.
There’s nothing worse than waking up at 2pm and realizing you missed out on 6 hours that you can’t get back. And trust me, you can get a lot done in 6 hours.
So I decided to take back my mornings.
Becoming a morning person can be hard, especially if you’re a dedicated night owl, but there are tricks and tips to follow to ease the transition.
Set Your Alarm Ealier
This one was the most helpful to me, and I don’t mean that you should set your alarm for 6am right away, especially if you’re someone who sleeps in past noon.
This should be a gradual transition. This method is very effective if you do not have to follow a strict schedule. The trick here is to note when your body naturally wakes up and set your alarm for 15-20 minutes before that time.
I usually wake up around 9am on any typical day. On my first day, I set my alarm for 8:40am. I went to bed knowing I was going to get up 20 minutes early and I actually ended up waking up 10 minutes BEFORE my alarm went off.
The second day I woke up an hour before my alarm was set to go off, decided to go back to sleep, and then again woke up 10 minutes before my alarm. It’s much easier to get up 20 minutes earlier than usual, than it is to try to wake up 3 or 4 hours earlier and have to convince your mind and body why it’s not a stupid idea to leave the bed.
Just remember this tip is for those of you who have the freedom to decided your schedule. This method works very well if you have the time for it, but it does take time. If you follow this method, in 3-4 days you will be able to wake up one hour earlier.
This is the main thing that I did to become a morning person again!
Move Your Alarm Clock
If you don’t have the freedom to gradually become a morning person, this one does the trick. Move your alarm clock, or your phone, across your bedroom into the farthest corner. Make sure it’s on the loudest setting or your phone volume is all the way up so that when your alarm goes off in the morning, you will have no choice but to get out of bed to shut it off.
The most difficult part about this one is resisting the temptation to crawl back in bed where you will inevitably fall back asleep and wake up late. Drink a glass of water or stretch while you’re up. Once you’re out of bed, you might as well stay out of bed and tackle the day!
Drink lots of Water!
This trick usually helps me when I want to wake up early. Right before bed I drink a very large glass of water (or 2) so that by the time my alarm goes off in the morning, I have to pee so badly that I get up anyway, sometimes before my alarm will even go off. It’s easier to wake up and get out of bed when you absolutely have to.
Stretch Your Body
This is one of my favorite ways to wake up early because it makes me feel happy to be waking up!
Stretching usually always feels nice and gives you a little extra energy, so why not stretch your body to get yourself out of bed?
Start with your feet! When you first wake up, before you even get out of your bed, stretch and flex your feet. Then move to your calves. Flex your calves a few times, then flex and stretch your feet and calves together. Flex your thighs, then flex and stretch your feet, calves, and thighs together.
Do you sense the pattern here?
Slowly stretch and flex individual body parts starting from your feet and moving up your body. By the time you’re flexing and stretching your entire body at once, you will most likely be fully awake and ready to get out of bed, and this really only takes a few minutes.
Make Your Bed
When you get out of bed, one of the first things you should do is make your bed. It gets your blood moving a little and I don’t know about you, but I have a really hard time getting into a freshly made bed. It takes me way too long to arrange all my pillow just perfectly for me to hop back in and ruin it!
Open Your Curtains
I like to open my curtains at night before I fall asleep so that the light slowly creeps through the window in the morning. It’s the first thing that I see when I open my eyes. That burst of natural light gives me the energy to get up and start my day. It’s much harder to wake up during the winter, or if you live in a climate that doesn’t see a lot of sunny days, so this might not be as effective for some people.
Queue up a playlist of your favorite, upbeat songs, or turn on the TV and catch up on your favorite shows (or a Podcast!) to captivate your attention. You could even read a book, a magazine, or scroll through Pinterest to get some cool DIY ideas or browse the Home Decor page. If you have something to look forward to, something to entertain yourself in the morning that lifts your spirits and gets you feeling engaged, it’s easier to look forward to starting your day!
Take Your Time
Don’t rush your morning. One of the best things about being a morning person is that you get to enjoy it! Listen to upbeat music, watch your favorite shows or a movie, make a giant, delicious breakfast, sip on some coffee and watch the sun come up. Whatever you decide to do with your morning, fill it with the things you enjoy, things that make you happy because then you will want to wake up early.