10 Ways To Improve Your Mornings By Waking Up With Less Stress
How can a night owl become a morning person?
I can definitely tell you that it’s not easy. But if you’re interested in getting a jumpstart on your day and increasing your productivity, waking up earlier is a great way to increase your discipline so that you can make things happen.
And making your way through your to-do list absolutely helps you to manage your stress before your stress manages you. In this post I’ll give you 10 tips to help you wake up earlier while you’re transforming yourself into a morning person.
1. Start The Night Before
Want to have a stress-free morning? Then start preparing the night before. Whatever will make it easier for you tomorrow, then that’s what you need to do tonight. It can be preparing your lunch, laying out your work outfit, or packing your briefcase. If it’ll get you out of the door quickly with minimal stress, then it’s the right move to make.
2. Develop An Evening Routine
An evening routine is one of the best ways to signal to your body that it’s time to wind down and go to sleep. Your evening routine doesn’t have to be anything elaborate, just relaxing, so whether you want to read, have a cup of warm milk, or engage in a deep breathing session, it’s all right as long as it helps you sleep.
3. Tech Disconnect
Before you go to bed, it’s important to limit your screen time. TV, phone, laptop, tablet, whatever it is, disconnect from it at least 1 – 2 hours before you go to bed. The blue light that’s emitted from those devices trick your body into to thinking that it’s earlier than it really is, making it hard for you to go to sleep. Besides the blue light, scrolling through social media before you go to bed can get you charged up which is the enemy of sleep.
4. Early To Bed…
Sleep is a vital part of any stress management program. It helps you rejuvenate so that you’re prepared for whatever the next day brings. You should calculate the number of hours of sleep that you need and adjust your bedtime to accommodate rising earlier. If you need seven hours of sleep and want to get up by 5 AM, you should aim to be in bed by 10 PM.
5. And Early To Rise…Wake Up at the Same Time Every Day
When you first start waking up early, those first few days will be a killer no matter what you do. But, developing an evening routine and morning routine where you go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, will make it easier in the long run.
Because routine does a body good. Your body produces melatonin to help you fall asleep and stay asleep. If you develop a routine to set your internal clock, then your body knows when you go to bed and when you wake up. This will help it produce the right amount of melatonin at night and stop when it is time for you to wake up.
6. Is That An Alarm Clock I Hear? Put Your Clock Away From Your Bed
When your clock (or phone clock) is right next to you, that makes it way too easy to roll over, turn it off and go back to sleep. Instead, if your clock is across the room or at least far enough away so that you have to get up to turn it off, you stand a better chance of staying up. And if your clock is on your phone, having it across the room makes it harder for you to stay up past your bedtime aimlessly playing on your phone.
7. Ease Into Your New Wake Up Time
As I stated earlier, when you’re first trying to become a morning person, it can be really difficult. You can help make the transition easier (for the first week or so) by slowly transitioning into your new wake schedule. Try setting your clock 15 minutes to ½ hour earlier than your current wake up time. Do this for a few days and once you find that you’re getting used to your new rise time, turn your clock back another 15 minutes or ½ hour. Repeat until you reach your desired wake up time.
8. Get Up – And Stay Up
When your alarm clock is going off and you’re just getting started with your new bedtime and morning routine, it can be tempting to justify staying in bed “just for a few more minutes.” But that’s gonna hurt you in the long run. Dig down deep, find your grit and get out of bed. This signals to your body that sleep is over and it’s time to start a new day. You also avoid the possibility of oversleeping.
9. Plan Your Mornings
Just as having an evening routine helps to signal to your body that it’s time to wind down and get ready for bed, a morning routine can tell your body that it’s time to wake up and get ready for the day ahead.
Your morning should include some good things for your health, like meditation, journaling, prayer or exercise. You can also plan ahead to ensure that you have a good breakfast and even lunch. When you’re first starting out with your morning routine, write it out to ensure that you have enough time for all of the activities you’ve planned.
10. Stick To Your Routine On The Weekend
To speed up your acclimation to your new routine, don’t stop when the weekend rolls around. Get up at the same time as you have all week, but because it’s the weekend, you might have more time to enjoy your morning routine.
So, there you have it! While learning to wake up early isn't the easiest, you’ll benefit by having more time in your day to accomplish your goals. And possibly you may find yourself looking forward to getting up early every day!
Let’s talk. What are you going to do to start becoming a morning person? Let me know in the comments section.
Cassandra Martin-Himmons is a facilitator, stress management coach and author of “Yes I’m Grateful,” a gratitude journal. She believes in empowering her clients to help them manage their stress and increase self-care. In her spare time, she enjoys papercrafting, volunteering and travel. Connect with her on Instagram or LinkedIn