Eight tips to help you wake up early and add 10+ hours to your week so you can get more done. Anyone can become a morning person with these easy habits!
There’s no sugarcoating it; waking up early sucks.
But, there’s good news – if you have trouble waking up in the morning, there are some ways to make waking up early easy. Really!
You may even surprise yourself and become a morning workout person.
I know what you’re thinking: “But I’m not a morning person!!”
Neither am I.
If you’re anything like me, you want to wake up early but can’t imagine how to wake up early and not feel tired.
My rock bottom point for needing more time came after my first baby, a new marriage and a DIY-heavy fixer upper house. Time to myself to do anything productive was a thing of the past, and I knew the only place to “make” time was adjusting my sleep schedule.
I was determined to figure out how to get up early in the morning. Trial and error, tedious research and many bleary-eyed mornings later, I landed on a “bag of tricks” that help me wake up insanely early. And I don’t even hate it.
These tactics to wake up early add 15 hours to my Monday – Friday. That’s 780 hours a year, or almost TWENTY 40-hour work weeks.
Now this isn’t to preach anyone should sacrifice sleep! But even if you go to bed early and log plenty of zzz’s, it can still be hard to get going when it’s dark outside and everyone else is sleeping. Paired with going to bed early and getting high quality sleep, these early morning habits will help you start your early day with a bang.
My husband, the type of guy who’d sleep until noon given half a chance, now sometimes even beats me out of bed. If he’s turned into a morning person, these tricks can work for ANYONE. Keep this list of habits in your toolbox and use it when you need more active time in a day.
Most of the time, my husband and I get up at 4am in the morning during the week and 6am on the weekends. This is how we do it.
HOW TO GET UP EARLY IN THE MORNING
1. Don’t expect to “feel like” waking up.
You were just asleep, so yep – you’re going to feel tired when your alarm goes off. Stop expecting otherwise! You’re not going to “feel like” waking up, so quit acting surprised you’re not bouncing out of bed when the alarm goes off. Recognize the feeling but don’t use it as an excuse to hit snooze. It’ll be OK once you get through the next steps.
2. Use a sunlight lamp (seasonal depression lamp).
Kick off a sunny morning on your own schedule. I originally used this sunlight lamp as a seasonal depression lamp to tackle the winter blues, but I discovered it’s also an amazing tool for waking up your body before sunrise. All you have to do is shine it on yourself for thirty minutes. It’s really that easy.
Curious about what’s the best seasonal depression lamp/sunlight lamp? You want to get a wide-spectrum light that emits 10,000 lux. The tabletop sunlight lamps are ideal for most people because they’re convenient to use and easy to store. They’re small enough to tote in your bag to the office or easily fit in a suitcase for travel.
I use the Sphere Lightphoria 10,000 Lux Lamp, which is a great buy if you can get it for around $40 or less on Amazon. I’ve used it for over five years and it’s still working great, but if you can spend a tiny bit more, the Beurer Daylight Lamp has a better design (it looks like a sleek tablet) and larger light surface.
I keep mine next to my laptop and use it during my cup of coffee.
3. Take vitamin D.
If you only take one supplement, it’s likely it should be vitamin D. Vitamin D is a crucial component of sleep quality, yet most of us don’t get enough.
Note, it does matter when you take it. Many wonder when’s the best time to take Vitamin D morning or night – definitely morning!! Never take it at night as it surpasses melatonin, the hormone that helps you fall asleep.
When shopping for vitamin d or any supplement, get a high quality brand. That doesn’t always mean expensive! Labdoor.com – an independent company that tests the quality of vitamins and supplements – ranks Carlson’s Vitamin D3 (5000iu) as the best, most premium vitamin d supplement you can take. It will cost you around $25 to take daily for A YEAR. Get it on Amazon Prime here.
4. Have an energizing drink you love.
This isn’t the time or place to start a new green smoothie habit; this needs to be a drink that you go to bed dreaming about and can’t wait to have in the morning. Any drink that excites you will do, from Diet Coke to hot lemon water, but you’ll really maximize this step if you can find a caffeinated tea or coffee recipe you love that’s packed with ingredients to stabilize your blood sugar and boost cognitive function.
There are all kinds of upgraded coffee recipes out there, so experiment with some different ideas to find what lights you up. I personally like cold brew coffee with collagen, MCT oil, stevia and a little whey protein. Bonus points if you add a revving adaptogen like maca root.
5. Follow a simple dry brush routine.
Dry brushing, also called skin brushing, is the technique of brushing your skin in a pattern from extremities, toward the heart, with a dry brush. There are so many benefits to dry brushing, but here we’re using it for its powerful energizing qualities. I love dry brushing because a full routine only takes 2-3 minutes – instant energy! – and it’s super easy to do. And hey, a lot of women say it helps with cellulite. 🙂
What’s the best dry brush to get? Dry brushes range from cheap and poor quality to super fancy pants expensive. I like this Wholesome Beauty brush because it’s super affordable and includes a handle so you can get your back!
6. Take a shower.
It feels weird the first time you take a shower at 4am, but it can wake you up on those extra tough mornings. Sometimes I don’t want to use my limited morning “me time” for a shower, but I always feel more awake, and faster, when I do. If you can take a shower in 5 minutes or less, it’s worth squeezing it in your wake-up routine.
If you want to take it to the next level, maximize the wake-up benefits of the shower with easy aromatherapy by using products with invigorating scents like peppermint or ginger. I love Alba Botanica’s Sparkling Mint Bath and Shower Gel, but I am tempted to try the Burt’s Bee’s wash with peppermint and rosemary!
(If you’re not going to take a shower, get out the door! There are lots of coffee shops open 24 hours and most gyms open at 5am. You’ll be surprised how many people are there at that time.)
7. Get everything ready ahead of time.
Make it as easy on yourself as possible to go from fast asleep to ultra productive. This means the night before, set yourself up with everything you’ll need in the morning. When that alarm goes off at 4am, something as minor as your socks in the other room can feel like too much trouble and send you right back to bed with promises to try again tomorrow.
Most mornings I prioritize time to work on my computer, so I keep my sunlight lamp, vitamin d, laptop and wedge pillow next to my bed, so all I need to do is mix up my coffee and within minutes, I’m working away from my comfy in-bed workstation. I use a wedge pillow like this one to support my back, but I’ve read a lot about lumbar support cushions, which sound even better for working from bed!
Want to workout in the morning? Set out your workout clothes. socks, shoes, headphones, bottle of water…everything you need! … literally right next to your bed, ready to go. You should have to step over them. Some people need to go one step further and even sleep in their workout clothes. I’ve done this for times I needed to make it to a 5am workout class.
8. Complete a short, achievable task first.
This is listed last, but it’s easily the most important. By completing a task, however small, you build instant momentum for your morning and set a positive tone for your entire day.
The night before, determine at least one short, achievable task you can do first thing in the morning. When you wake up, do it!! For time-strapped new moms, this could be taking a shower and for others, this could be sending that email that’s easy to write but also easy to put off. Get it sent and feel better by simply accomplishing a nagging task.
So, tell me!
What would you do with an extra hour or two of time to yourself every day?
Do you think you could wake up at 5am to make it a reality?
What are some weird things that help YOU wake up?