For most of us, rising bright and early is part of our everyday routine. Whether you have to go to school, work, or just maximize the amount of time you have in the day, we have to get up and greet the day not long after the sun rises. If you’re not a morning person, this can make starting the day a struggle. What you might not realize is that you can become a morning person. Like most things, it’s all about developing the right habits and routines.
1. Go to Bed Early
It doesn’t really matter when you want to get up. Your body is going to want to get the same amount of sleep. This means if you want to get up early, you can’t stay up until 2:00 AM binge-watching your favorite TV show. It doesn’t mean you have to be in bed as soon as the sun sets either. You just have to shift your current schedule back until you are going to bed and waking up at times you are comfortable and happy with.
2. Move Your Alarm Clock
One of the biggest obstacles that we all face when it’s time to get up early is the snooze button. Even when we know we shouldn’t press it, it tempts us into five, ten, even thirty more minutes of sleep. This is because it’s close by and hitting snooze is easier than waking up fully and deciding to get up. The solution? Move your alarm clock somewhere that you will have to get out of bed and walk to it. This doesn’t have to be anything too extreme, but even setting your alarm clock on your dresser can make a difference. Those few steps from your bed to the alarm clock will get your body in motion and begin waking up your brain.
3. Change Your Schedule Gradually
An important thing to remember when you are trying to change your schedule is that you can’t do it all at once. If you try to immediately shift your schedule back four hours, you are going to be very tired, and you’re probably going to give up. This is why you need to pace yourself. Make your bedtime 15 to 30 minutes earlier every day until you reach your goal bedtime. Do the same for your wake-up time, and your whole schedule will move effectively in a way that won’t affect your ability to sleep well.
4. Set a “Stop Time” for Electronics
If your electronics are a major problem when it comes to adjusting your schedule, you’re not alone. One of the things that affects our sleep schedule the most is blue light (like the kind that is produced by TVs, computers, and cell phones). This blue light encourages brain activity and alertness and keeps us awake at night when we’re scrolling through our Instagram feeds. Because of this, it is important to set a stop time when you put away electronics before bed. This should be before your bedtime so that your brain has time to wind down. Ideally, you want 30 minutes to an hour between your stop time and your bedtime to ensure the best sleep.
Electronics are keeping you up at night, but in the morning, it’s low brain activity that is making it hard to get up. We’ve all been there. You wake up early, but you spend more time sitting around trying to wake up than using your extra time productively. To fight this, you have to get moving! The easiest way to do this is to find a morning exercise routine that works for you. Do jumping jacks, head to the gym, or just sit on your bedroom floor and do a stretch routine. It doesn’t take a full-blown workout to get your brain in motion, so customize a routine that works for you.
There are a lot of benefits to being a morning person. Unfortunately, we aren’t all natural morning people, so it can take some work to get your new routine just right. That doesn’t mean it’s hard, though! Go slowly and make changes at your own pace, and you’ll find that getting up gets easier with time.