Just lately, I’ve been getting up at 5:30am to workout, meditate and read before getting S up for nursery. When I mention this to people they say things like “I wish I could do that” or “you’re lucky you’re a morning person.” It’s not that I’m necessarily a “morning person” though; I just feel that I would rather spend that 90 or so minutes improving myself and my life, than asleep. With that in mind, here are five ways you can become a morning person:
1. Choose to be
The thing about getting up in the morning is, when you hit that snooze button over and over, what you’re saying is that you choose to stay in bed; that you would rather sleep than do whatever it is you would do if you got out of bed. For me, I would rather get fit and read, so I get up shit early and do that. Your brain believes what your body tells it. If your alarm goes off and you groan, hit snooze and roll over, your brain will go back to sleep. If your alarm goes off and you say “I’m going to have a brilliant day today” as you get out of bed, you will not go back to sleep.
2. Go to bed early
If you need your sleep that much, go to bed earlier. This is down to what’s more important to you, again: staying up late to watch Big Brother or whatever on TV, or getting up early to get stuff done. I find I’m much more productive early in the morning than late at night, and that exercising and meditating set me up for the day. I allow for that earlier alarm by going to bed earlier to ensure I’m not missing out on sleep. I read somewhere years ago that the hours of sleep before midnight are more important any way.
3. Use your alarm wisely
I’ve downloaded a motivational message for my alarm. When it goes off it tells me to have a stretch, to have a drink, to think of the things for which I am grateful. It tells me today is going to be an awesome day, and reminds me to make my bed. Yes, you may well scoff and say it’s cheesy – but I get out of bed. And these days it is dark at 5:30am.
Some people advocate setting your alarm and leaving it on the other side of the room so that you have to get out of bed to switch it off. That doesn’t work for me because if my alarm wakes S, the game is up and I don’t get my 90 minutes to myself in the morning. But if you don’t have a small person in the bed next to you, go for it.
4. Head for the bathroom
Yes, you will probably need a wee when you wake up. But you’ll also be dehydrated – so have a large glass of water. If you’re still feeling sleepy, splash some water on your face and clean your teeth. The teeth thing really works.
5. Do some exercise
You don’t need to go for a massive run or something; you can do some yoga or perhaps just a few squats. Anything to get the blood pumping. Once you’re up and moving, you won’t feel like going back to bed.
I have taken the decision to get up early in the mornings so that I can have time to exercise, meditate and read before starting my day. I thought it would be difficult to get up earlier, but I just set my alarm fifteen minutes earlier each morning and it’s not been difficult at all.
Being a single parent, I don’t get a lot of time to myself. I can’t do things like exercise and reading while S is at nursery as those are my hours for working and I take that very seriously. Getting up early in the morning means I can start my day with some time to myself, setting positive intentions for the day. Just you watch what I can achieve with those extra 90 minutes in my day.