Tuesday, 27 September 2011

How to Become a Morning Person (For Night Owls)

Image Via Absolutely Beautiful Things
In the past few months, I have successfully converted myself into a morning person. And I can't tell you how great it feels! Honestly, I don't remember the last time I pressed the snooze button.  My alarm goes off at 6 a.m., I throw on the light, and jump right up and make my bed. I'm never in a rush to get out the door, and have so much extra time to cross a few things off my to-do list, or to just relax and start my day off feeling happy and zenful.

Back in the day, I was pretty much the opposite. I would stay up way too late, and then would set my alarm at least 35 minutes early to accomodate multiple hits of the snooze button. I would finally stumble out of bed grumpy and exhausted, skip breakfast, and feel profoundly negative about the day ahead. My lowest point was the time I woke up at what I thought was 5:30 a.m, only to realize a full hour later that it was in fact 5:30 p.m. Needless to say, it wasn't the healthiest of sleep cycles.

Here are a few tips that helped turn me into a worm getting early bird kind of girl:

1. Break the Habit!

Becoming a morning person is not going to happen if it means depriving yourself of beauty sleep. It's simple math: you have to be willing to go to bed earlier if you want to wake up earlier. Thing is, you can't really make yourself  fall asleep a few hours before your regular time. However, you can force yourself to get up earlier. Yes, it's going to be hard the first few days, but the more tired you are, the sooner you'll want to go to bed, and you'll quickly be back to a healthy 7-9 hours of shut eye. The hard part is staying motivated to do this, so read on!  

2. Have Something to Look Forward to!

Do you remember when you were a kid waking up on Christmas morning? It wasn't that hard to do knowing that there was a room full of presents downstairs waiting for you. I can't stress this enough: You need to have a reason to be excited to be awake. For example, I always pre-make my breakfast the night before and set the timer on the coffee machine. It's easy not to keep sleeping when you have something delicious waiting for you. I'll usually watch a tv show while I'm eating, and go out on the porch to breathe in some fresh air and do some stretches. The sun is usually still coming up and I feel like the entire city is still sleeping except me. So blissful!  

3. Take the Stress Out of It!

The morning is your time, and it should be about doing things that make you happy. So the more you can "reschedule" the activities that have you flying around the house in a panic the better. Try to do a lot of your more menial tasks the night before. i.e. Have your outfit picked out, have your bag/lunch packed, your work done, and your keys by the door. Why be tearing through your closet when you could be sitting down at the kitchen table, taking your sweet sweet time flipping through a magazine? Also, although I can admire people who go to the gym first thing, I feel like I would only be dreading it if I tried to do it too early. Why put pressure on yourself right away? Try to make your morning routine into a daily ritual consisting only of nice relaxing activities that put you in a good mood, sometimes before they even happen.

5. Get Inspired!

Need some more motivation to help hatch you from that duvet cuccoon?

Try checking out this blog about how various famous people organize their days: http://dailyroutines.typepad.com/

And I'm a sucker for a good quote. Here's some good ones:

Be pleasant until ten o'clock in the morning and the rest of the day will take care of itself.  ~Elbert Hubbard
The moment when you first wake up in the morning is the most wonderful of the twenty-four hours.  No matter how weary or dreary you may feel, you possess the certainty that, during the day that lies before you, absolutely anything may happen.  And the fact that it practically always doesn't, matters not a jot.  The possibility is always there.  ~Monica Baldwin
One key to success is to have lunch at the time of day most people have breakfast.  ~Robert Brault
The day shall not be up so soon as I, To try the fair adventure of tomorrow. ~William Shakespeare 
Lose an hour in the morning, and you will be all day hunting for it.  ~Richard Whately 
So RISE AND SHINE SUNSHINES!  It'll be worth it, I promise. 

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