Mornings are a mad rush and hardly anyone’s favorite time of day, particularly if you’ve stayed up the night before catching up on Game of Thrones or re-watching Silicon Valley episodes for the 10th time.
The alarm goes off and we do what we can to delay reality by hitting snooze, telling ourselves that we don’t even have the strength to power through getting out of bed. It all sounds so daunting, becoming a morning person. But the Greatlist sums it up perfectly: it turns out morning people aren’t using will power to rise and shine; they’re using habits. So fear not, fellow non-morning people. There are simple measures you can take to start forming the habits necessary to make every morning a great one.
Below is my five-step guide. Try these tips for about a week or so, and you will soon find that waking up early – and happy and more relaxed – is easier than you think.
Set a happy tune.
Get rid of that blaring alarm. It’s stressful. One of the best things I did for myself was to change my ringtone to something more pleasant (confession: it’s the Harry Potter theme-song). Waking up to a soothing tune or a happier song is worth the $0.99 on iTunes.
Trade coffee for water.
Imagine not drinking water for the next 7-8 hours. Well, that’s essentially what you do when you sleep. Keep a glass of water by your bed and let it be the first thing you get to when you wake up. Water will help to jump start your metabolism, flush out toxins and give your brain the fuel it needs to kick-start your day on a positive note. Your body will thank you.
Take a moment of gratitude.
What are you grateful for? Think through five things that you couldn’t be more thankful to have this morning. Is it your family? Is it your friends? Perhaps it’s the car you have that takes you from place to place. Maybe it’s the comfy bed that you sleep in or the roof over your head. Maybe it’s the fact that you woke up healthy this morning. Thinking through things that bring you joy gets the brain going in a positive rhythm. Take a moment to give thanks for all of the things that you have, including the job you’re about to get to. There are many people that live without what we take for granted every day.
“I can handle whatever today throws at me.” Say it out loud. There’s power in your voice. Positive affirmations set the context for a happy day and charge the mind with positive emotions. It costs you nothing to tell yourself that you’ve got what it takes to get through the day.
Stay away from social media until you’ve had some time for yourself. Mornings should be for you, not for other people. Give yourself a half hour of personal development before you dive into your day. Many advise reading up on the news to start, but I personally advise against it. Save it for later. The news is often a sad way to kick off your day. So, if that’s your thing, try reading uplifting blog posts (like this one) or a chapter of a book that might inspire you. Do some stretching, step outside to think for five minutes or even spend some time listening to music. Set an intention. Just disconnect. You should be your first priority.