There are certain behaviors that we do each morning without even thinking about them. Some of these behaviors that feel so good (like saying, “five more minutes!”) actually make it more difficult for our minds and bodies to wake up. Every night we go to bed with the intentions of waking up fully rested and ready to seize the day. I plan to make breakfast early before work, enjoy a cup of coffee and get ready leisurely as opposed to in a panic. The good news is that our sleeping schedules can be drastically improved by minimal changes to our routine. Here are 10 ways to become a morning person without a lot of effort involved.
1. Stop hitting the snooze button
When you hit snooze you may think you’re getting a few more minutes of sleep which will make you less tired, however it isn’t doing you any favors. You aren’t able to achieve REM sleep and therefore your cycle has been disrupted. Don’t set 10 alarms and get up on the last one. Set your alarm for the time you need to wake up and then get out of bed when it goes off. If you’re having trouble with this, but your alarm across the room so you have to get up to turn it off.
2. Get out of bed
Isn’t it funny how your bed seems so uncomfortable when you are tossing and turning trying to fall asleep, and the second your alarm goes off it is a cloud? That feeling sucks, but unfortunately, the longer you lay in bed the harder it becomes to get up. If you waste time laying in bed, you’ll grow crankier by the second until you have to get up, and you end up creating more stress for yourself by having to make up for lost time. This is something that I make a point to do, and once I get out of bed I realize I’m not as tired as I thought I was.
3. Get to sleep earlier each night
This may seem obvious, but the earlier you get to bed the easier it will be to get up when your alarm goes off. If you go to bed at 2 am there’s no way you’ll be able to get up easily come 6:30 am. Most of our bodies need 7 hours of sleep per night to function properly and it affects our health in more ways than you may think. One of the best ways to become a morning person is to actually give your body the chance to be awake. Getting more sleep improves your memory, increases your metabolism, heightens your mood and concentration, and lowers your stress level and blood sugar.
4. Get up at the same time every day
This can be annoying and tricky on the weekends, but if you get up at the same time every morning your body will be used to it and you’ll be ready to start the day sooner and more energetically. Your internal clock will start waking you up before your alarm even goes off.
5. Make your morning routine enjoyable
If you have an immediate incentive to get out of bed you’ll be less likely to lay around or think about how sucky your commute is and more likely to focus on something positive. If reading, listening to the radio, or watching tv relaxes you for a bit while you’re getting ready or eating your breakfast, do it.
6. Keep a robe next to your bed for cold winter mornings.
Part of the reason I don’t want to get out of bed in the winter (or in the summer when I blast my A/C because I like to waste money) is because my bed is so warm and it is a cold world out there. If you leave a robe or a sweatshirt right next to your bed, you’ll be a little more prepared for what is to come when you tear back the covers.
7. Open your shades and let the sunlight in
We’re just like plants, just kidding!. We do however need Vitamin D to be healthy and so we don’t get seasonal depression. Natural light also helps signal your mind and body that it’s daytime, and therefore time to be awake. It’s one of the best, most organic ways to become a morning person.
8. Get in a morning workout
I feel funny writing this one because I will never be this person, but I know a lot of people who benefit greatly from working out in the morning. Exercise gives you endorphins and endorphins make you happy and happy people don’t shoot their husbands. They just don’t.
9. Take a cold shower
You’re a real sicko if this is what you have to revert to in the morning to wake up. I’d rather do a lot of things than get out of my warm bed and shock my system into getting up. You were definitely that kid who loved to run from the pool and jump in the hot tub and then back to the pool again. Next, you’re going to tell me you enjoy drinking OJ after you brush your teeth.
10. Coffee, obv
This is sort of cheating compared to all the other ways to become a morning person. But hey, do what you gotta do. Set your coffee maker to start at a certain time in the morning so you don’t have to deal with making it in the morning. It’s all about the little things in life.