Even though I do believe that we are born being either larks (aka morning people) or owls (aka morning haters), there are definitely ways to make getting up a little easier even though the dark winter mornings make it seem like quite the chore.
So, how do we actually make ourselves leave our cosy beds? I believe there’s no exact formula and what works for me might not work for you, however, if you don’t try, you’ll never know … right?
Step #1 – Preparation
No matter whether you are a lark or an owl, chances are your body needs at least 7 hours of sleep. Yes, you can get by on much less than that, but your mental and physical health definitely won’t be sending you a thank you card.
Knowing this, the easiest way is to determine what time you need to get up and subtract at least 7 hours. So, you have your bedtime but what now? Life gets busy and you find yourself awake two hours after your bedtime. Been there, done that.
The key is not to set yourself up for a failure. Plan out your evenings, establish a routine, and stick to it as much as possible. Set out your clothes, decide what you’re eating for breakfast, and if you have to, set an alarm for your bedtime as well as your wakeup time.
Step #2 – No Snooze
Honestly, I’m not even sure who thought it would be a good idea to create that nasty little button. By snoozing, your brain starts falling asleep again just to be interrupted 10 minutes later.
To help you in breaking the ugly snooze habit, try putting your alarm clock (read iPhone – hello 2019) across the room so that you’re forced to get out of bed when it goes off. One of my friends actually took a very drastic approach. She would set two alarms — one that stayed in her bedroom and one that would go off 5 minutes later that she placed in front of her daughter’s nursery. Talk about having an adrenaline rush!
Step #3 – Purpose
Getting up early is a great habit to acquire, but for most of us, it won’t happen without a great force of motivation. Find out what your “why” is. To have enough time for a second cup of coffee? For mediation? Whatever your why is, it better be good enough to get you out of bed.
Step #4 – Be You
One of Gretchen Rubin, a New York Times bestselling author’s life hacks is to “Be Gretchen.” At the end of the day, you should always do you. Don’t try to make yourself get up at 5 just because your best friend does. If you don’t have to be at work until 8, and you can get ready in an hour, don’t beat yourself up for not getting up at hours before you actually have to.
Yes, trying to change what we don’t like about ourselves is great, but if it makes you miserable, you might, within reason, be better off just accepting who you are.
Are you interested in reading more about how I’m trying to better myself and grow through my Happiness Project? You can do so right here.