Whether you’d like to witness the sunrise, have some peace and quiet before your family wakes up, or want to add a little extra time to your busy days, then you may be considering getting up a little earlier each morning.
But if you aren’t an early riser by nature, then you likely don’t consider yourself a morning person, which means that the thought of getting up even 15 minutes earlier than usual may seem daunting. While your night owl tendencies may be hardwired to some extent, science has proven that with some practice, patience, and the right tips, you can help yourself become a morning person in no time.
Your body’s sleep cycle is dictated by your circadian rhythm, which is the human body’s internal clock that uses patterns of light and dark to determine our sleep patterns. In simple terms, this clock tells you to wake up when the sun is up and go to bed once it gets dark outside; however, scientists have discovered that it’s a little more complicated than that. In fact, your preference for evenings over mornings (or vice versa) is influenced by more than just your exposure to daylight, things like genetics and age also come into play to develop your specific chronotype, which is just a fancy way of talking about your body’s natural inclination toward being a night owl or early bird.
While things like age and genetics are outside of your control, rest assured that some of the factors that affect your chronotype are controllable. This means that while you may not be able to completely flip the switch and become a morning person when you definitely prefer the evenings, there are still things you can do to maximize your sleep and help yourself wake up a little earlier each day.
1. Stick To A Sleep Schedule
Whether you are a morning person or not, it’s important to have a consistent sleep schedule that helps ensure you are getting enough sleep, which is usually 7 to 8 hours a night for most adults. Even on the weekends and holidays, doing your best to stick to your normal sleep schedule will go a long way toward keeping your circadian rhythm on track, which naturally will make your mornings a little easier.
2. Sleep Earlier To Wake Up Earlier
Do you have your sleep schedule in check? Great! Now try gradually moving your bedtime a little earlier. Research shows that morning people go to sleep about 3.3 hours after sunset. Of course, this can seem impossible if you’re body is used to going to bed around midnight, so it’s best to start moving your bedtime in 15-minute increments until you reach your desired bedtime. For example, if your normal sleep time is 11 pm, move it to 10.45 pm, then 10.30 pm, and so on until you reach your new bedtime. Over time, you will feel the difference.
3. Use Light Wisely
Remember, light is one of the factors that influence your circadian rhythm, and when it comes to helping yourself adjust to a new sleep-wake cycle, natural light is your best friend. If you find it hard to wake up in the morning, one of the first steps you can take is to leave your blinds or curtains slightly open when you go to bed at night. This will allow natural light to come into your room as the sunrises, which will go a long way toward helping you wake up earlier.
Another thing you can do is ensure you are exposed to as much natural light as possible during the day. As the evening sets in, lower the lights in your home to signal your body that bedtime is approaching. Finally, set your screens to dim or turn off as the sun sets, as the blue light emitted from these devices can impact your body’s sleep-wake cycle.
4. Create And Stick To A Morning Routine
Planning and following the same routine in the mornings comes with a lot of benefits, and if you include the right activities in your routine, one of those benefits is that it helps your body and mind get up and going. If you don’t have a morning routine, a good place to start is by simply not hitting snooze when your alarm goes off, as this can impact your sleep-wake cycle. Convince yourself to get out of bed right away and quickly get on with your day by drinking some water, meditating, exercising, journaling, or doing another activity that helps you wake up and connect with yourself before you have to tackle the rest of the day.
5. Avoid Caffeine In The Afternoon Or Evening
Caffeine is a favorite around the world to help us have the energy to face the day. However, caffeine has been found to stay in your body for up to 12 hours after consumption, which means that if you aren’t paying attention to the time, it can easily upset your sleep schedule. If you’re an avid coffee or tea drinker, consider switching to decaf or even water in the afternoon to give your body time to get the caffeine out of your system before you head to bed. This way, you will be able to fall asleep faster and sleep better, which will help you feel more refreshed when your alarm goes off in the morning.
6. Support With Supplements
Last, but certainly not least, you can always consider supporting your body with supplements. Many people turn to things like melatonin to help them fall asleep faster, but if you find you struggle more with getting out of bed than getting into it, you may want to consider a natural energy-boosting supplement like Energize from New Earth instead. These natural supplements boost your energy from a cellular level, which means they can help give you the energy you need to get going in the morning and won’t wear off before lunch rolls around.
Take Your Mornings Into Your Own Hands
No matter what your reasons are for wanting to become more of a morning person, taking these steps can go a long way in helping you get there. Just remember though, changes like these don’t happen overnight. Take it slow, ease yourself into a new routine, and know that with time, these new habits you’re building will help make your mornings more pleasant and productive.
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