How to Become A Morning Person

Maldita la hora, Flickr

We’ve all been there before. You’ve tried leaving that party a couple hours earlier, you’ve set an alarm to tell yourself to go to sleep, but somehow SOMETHING always gets in the way. For example, some nights (most nights in my case), checking a few notifications on Facebook becomes a 5 hour long episode of watching every Vine video on my news feed, liking photos, and clicking the link on the sidebar for $39.95 shoes when the last thing I need is more shoes. The next thing I know, it’s 3 o’clock in the morning. During the summer break, it’s so easy to get into the habit of sleeping later and waking up even later. But as the saying goes, if you hoot with the owls at night, you can’t soar with the eagles in the morning. If you’re tired of being nocturnal and you want to seize the daylight hours while summer lasts, try changing what you do before and after you sleep to become a morning person. Here’s to learning to love that alarm clock!

Prepare yourself for good sleep

It’s no riddle that getting enough sleep in the first place will make pushing back the covers in the morning easier.

1. Turn off your electronics at least 30 minutes before you go to sleep: According to WebMD, electronics stimulate our brains by increasing electrical and neuron activity. Secondly, the light emitted from screens on electronics prevents melatonin, which is a sleep-inducing hormone, from being released. [1]

2. Avoid caffeine and diuretics: Foods and drinks that contain caffeine, such as chocolate, will keep you awake longer. Diuretic foods promote the production of urine and can cause more frequent trips to the bathroom during the night.

3. Wind down: Try to not do anything too vigorous, such as exercise, before you sleep. Get into a slower pace before bedtime. Reading a book or writing in a journal are two things that I like to do to close the day.

4. Give yourself a deadline: Aim to finish your tasks of the day by a certain time to give yourself ample sleep. Setting that deadline will help you stay on task instead of procrastinating late into the night then rushing to catch up on work even later into the night.

Amp up your morning routine

1. Start Slow: Starting the day in a rush to get out the door will generate stress and possibly negatively impact the rest of your day. Create some “me time” to make and eat a healthy breakfast to go along with that morning newspaper or, in my case, a backed up PVR. For me, the morning is my relaxing part of the day. It’s when I haven’t faced the demands of work, the long lines of traffic, or strict deadlines.

2. Exercise: Tired of feeling groggy in the morning? Try jump starting your heart with some exercise! Increasing your heart rate and getting some blood pumping through your body will help you feel vivacious.

3. Change the tune: I’m the kind of person that sets 5 alarm clocks and STILL manages to sleep through all of them. I discovered that I’ve become so used to the usual tunes of my alarm clock that I don’t even hear them anymore. So to stop myself from sleeping in, I change my alarm every couple of months to different songs that will catch my unconscious attention.

4. Drink a large glass of water: Your body gets quite dehydrated over the course of the night which can cause you to feel fatigued. Have some water as soon as possible after you get up and you’ll feel much more energized.

5. Remind yourself of your goals: Feeling like you’re just going through the motions? Write down your long and short term goals on some paper and keep it somewhere where it will be noticeable. Having a visual reminder of what you want to achieve will trigger your motivation and get to you pumped to start your day.

1. Power Down for Better Sleep, WebMD