There are so many things we would like to try and learn but yet we don’t. Instead we then justify this inaction using the excuse “I don’t have enough time”. We can all relate to this pattern.
But think about all the productivity gurus like Tim Ferris or Matt D’Avella – they also have just 24h in their day. There are a lot of ways of using your time more efficiently and here I’m going to talk about one of them. Waking up early. Now – I’m not saying it’s productive for everyone but for the vast majority I think it is a game-changer. So how to become a morning person?
1. Go to bed early
I can’t stress enough how important this is. We as human beings need a certain amount of sleep during the night. If you’re struggling to wake up at 8 A.M. you can’t make your body wake up at 6 A.M. On average humans should sleep about 8h a day and if you want to join The 5 A.M. Club you have to rearrange your sleep schedule.
2. Get up right after you wake up
You don’t have to stand up but at least sit on your bed and stretch out your arms. It’s not hard to wake up early. What’s hard is to stay awake after you do. Getting up and walking across the room or to the bathroom will help to start the day faster.
3. Make it fun
In order to make a habit stick you should reward yourself every time you complete it. For example, you can wake up early and watch the sunrise with a cup of tea or coffee for 10 minutes or read some pages of a favorite book. I personally like to wake up at about 5 A.M. to go for a run and listen to my favorite podcasts.
4. Don’t be too hard on yourself
At the beginning you can be really motivated and excited but the excitement will decline with time. There’s nothing wrong with taking a few days off but only if you can get back at it. I love Matt D’Avella’s Two Day Rule which in this case would mean that you can take only one day off a certain habit in a row. And the important thing to remember is that in a couple of weeks you won’t feel the need to take days off.
5. Plan your mornings
Planning the night before makes waking up so much easier. If you have a clear reason why you have to get up it’s harder to turn on the other side and fall back asleep. You don’t need to be super productive in the morning and do 2h workout like Mark Wahlberg. Just write down the activities that you say “you never have the time for”. For example start with a walk, some stretching, journaling, or filling up the dishwasher.
6. Make changes gradually
If you’re used to staying on watching Netflix until 2 A.M. then it’s going to take some time for your body to be able to fall asleep at 9 or 10 P.M. Go to bed and wake up 30 minutes or an hour earlier then the night before. There’s no point in going overboard and waking up 4h earlier than usual because you will just give up the next night. It takes about 5-7 days for your body to adjust to the new sleep schedule.
And that’s about it. Starting your day early creates a lot of benefits that I’ll cover next time. I know you’ll do great and experience these benefits yourself.