Some people are night owls, others are early birds – in the words of Lady Gaga, we’re born this way. The fact of the matter is, many of us need to wake up early whether we are early birds or not. To help those who seem to wake up on the wrong side of the bed every morning, I offer you my 8 tips for becoming a morning person.
Tip #1: Prep the Night Before
Prepping your meals and outfit the night before can save you so much time in the morning. Scrambling around the kitchen and trying to pack your lunch in 3 minutes is a surefire way to start your day on a stressful note. Avoid these kinds of stressors by packing your lunch and setting your outfit out ahead of time. You can read more about these tips in this post.
Tip #2: Don’t Hit Snooze
Studies show that hitting the snooze button will actually make you feel more tired. According to Rafael Pelayo, a sleep specialist at the Stanford University Sleep Medicine Center, pressing the snooze button confuses your body and your brain. When you press snooze, your body thinks it’s a false alarm and that you don’t have to wake up.
When your alarm starts chiming the second time, your body is taken by surprise, which results in that groggy feeling you experience called sleep inertia (2014). Instead, set your alarm for the time you need to get up and resist the urge to press snooze. It might be a challenge at first, but your body and mind will thank you.
Tip #3: Make Your Bed
Making your bed in the morning sets the tone for your day. In a commencement speech at the University of Texas, William H. McCraven, Commander of the U.S. Special Operations Command, shared some useful advice from his 36 years as a Navy SEAL. He told the wide-eyed grads, “If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed” (2014).
As McCraven explained, if you make your bed every morning, you’ll have accomplished the first task of the day. While this habit is small, it can make a positive impact by leading to accomplishing other tasks. If the pride from bed-making isn’t encouraging enough, this modest effort also organizes your space, which can make you feel calm and collected.
Tip #4: Add Some Light
There’s a reason it’s hard to get some shut-eye with light beaming down on your face. Turning the light on can help wake you up and acclimate you to the idea of joining the outside world. When possible, natural light is best to awaken your senses and start your day.
Tip #5: Get Moving
It’s no wonder you feel great after that morning gym sesh. When you exercise, your effort helps to deliver oxygen and nutrients to muscles, organs and other tissues – and that means your whole cardiovascular system will work more efficiently, upping your energy (2014).
Exercise is also shown to increase serotonin production and release, which is linked to feelings of well-being and happiness. It’s simple – wake up, workout, be happy.
Tip #6: Listen to Some Music
A 2013 study found that listening to music can elevate your mood and help you achieve self-awareness. When you’re getting ready in the morning, try jamming out to some of your favorite tunes to lift your spirits and encourage you to seize the day.
Tip #7: Hydrate
Drinking water to stay hydrated is an important habit to practice throughout the day. While you shouldn’t limit water consumption solely to the mornings, this is one of the most important times to gulp some up.
Why you might ask? Drinking a glass of water in the morning fires up your metabolism, hydrates you, flushes unwanted toxins out of your body, and gives your brain fuel (2013). What other reasons do you need? Drink up!
Tip #8: Set the Tone
If you roll out of bed and cry out that you’re off to another day in the prison you call work, you’re probably not going to be in the brightest of moods first thing in the morning. The key to being a morning person, in my opinion, is keeping a positive, optimistic attitude. Yeah, you might not be looking forward to your 8:00 AM meeting, but you are looking forward to your afternoon coffee date. Find the silver lining, hold onto it, and think happy thoughts – it’ll make such a difference.
What are your tips for becoming a morning person? Share in the comments!
To see this article published in The Huffington Post, click here.