One of the most common traits among successful people is waking up early and having more hours in the day to accomplish your goals will inevitably lead to greater outcomes.
While the benefits of waking up early seem pretty apparent, many people still choose to sleep in.
Of course, sleeping in can be a wonderful thing, especially on a rainy weekend when you have no obligations. But on the weekdays, when it’s time to be productive, getting in a consistent morning routine can be your first step toward success.
Early risers tend to be healthier, happier, and more productive. Did I mention that some of the most successful people in the world wake up early? Isn’t sacrificing a few hours of sleep worth reaping all of these benefits?
Below, you’ll find my ultimate guide for waking up early and taking advantage of the most valuable hours of your day.
For those who are used to waking up late, the idea of waking up early itself may seem like a horrible thing.
However, if you take the time before you go to sleep to visualize a great day tomorrow, you may be surprised by how willing you are to sacrifice those couple of hours of sleep in the morning.
Imagine what the ideal morning would be to you. Maybe it’s a cup of coffee while you read your book out on the patio, or the smell of bacon coming off a frying pan as the morning news plays on the TV.
Now think about all of the other things you can accomplish after starting your day right.
The fact of the matter is that when you wake up early, you have much more time to accomplish whatever you set out to accomplish, because envisioning a good tomorrow will make you all the more willing to wake up and get a headstart on the day.
Not only will this make it easier to wake up in the morning, but it will brighten your mood for the whole day.
Choose the Right Alarm
Most people put very little thought into the alarm they choose. But in truth, the first sound you hear as you wake up can make all the difference in terms of how your day goes.
Some of the preset alarms on the iPhone emulate the beautiful sound of a harp, whereas others sound like a siren indicating that a nuclear apocalypse is imminent.
If you want to be a consistent early riser, you’re going to have to find the alarm that works best with your sleeping habits.
Perhaps you are a very heavy sleeper, and the only thing that will wake you up is a super-aggressive alarm.
If you’re a relatively light sleeper then maybe you’ll find that the best way for you to wake up is with a pleasant melody that will ease you into your day.
Whatever it is, try out a couple different alarms and determine which will be the best for you and will help you wake up early consistently.
Pro Tip: Certain phones and digital alarm clocks allow you to set your favorite song as your alarm so you can wake up in a great mood every day.
Relax Before You Start Your Workday
One of the best ways to get a good start to your day is by taking a little time to relax and enjoy yourself before you start your workday.
Everyone has experienced the feeling of showing up to work only minutes after you crawled out of bed and it’s no fun.
Give yourself some time in the morning to reflect on the previous day, to relax a bit, and to prepare yourself for the day you have ahead of you.
If you work in an office and rarely get to be outside, spend your early mornings in the sunlight as you enjoy your coffee and your breakfast.
Reading in the morning, whether it be the newspaper, a novel, or your Twitter feed, is proven to increase focus throughout the rest of the day.
Instead of hitting that snooze button for an extra 15 minutes of sleep, wake up and do something to stimulate your mind.
There are endless excuses for not waking up early.
Maybe you’ve worked really hard all week and you think you deserve to sleep in until noon. Maybe you’re having an amazing dream and you just want to go back to it rather than getting your day started.
Regardless of what your excuse is, sleeping in will set you back in your quest to become an early riser.
The only way to make waking up early a painless habit is by doing it every day.
If you choose to make an excuse and sleep in one day, it will only make it harder to wake up early the next day.
Even if it seems like there is no reason in the world why you need to wake up early, do it anyway.
You will be taking a crucial step towards setting your circadian rhythms on an earlier schedule, and you will make it a whole lot easier on yourself to wake up early the next day.
Go to Bed on Time
This is perhaps the most obvious and most difficult life hack for people who are not used to waking up early.
The only way to establish productive morning routines is to wake up early, and the only way to consistently wake up early is to go to sleep at a reasonable time.
It is so easy to get into the routine of staying up late at night, streaming Netflix, reading Wikipedia, reading books, or whatever else it is you do in the quiet hours of the night.
This might mean that you should try to avoid watching that last episode of whatever series you’re binging and instead wake up early and get a proper start to your day.
At the end of the day if you’re focusing on creating a better sleep schedule you will be impressed with how much you can accomplish when you wake up feeling fresh and well-rested.
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