I’ve been thinking about it recently, and it’s occurred to me that I am definitely a morning person. Maybe it’s been trained into me, maybe I was born that way. Either way, I would like to share with you my top tips for getting up early, and doing it every day. So without further ado….
Get into the right mindset
Ask yourself why you need to be up early each day. Is it for work? Is it to have more time to get things done? Is it to have time to eat breakfast? Do you have children you need to be up for? Make a note of these reasons either mentally or on paper to remind yourself of, on days when you feel particularly sluggish. I find that reminding myself how great it feels to get home from work and find I did all the housework in the morning makes me happy to get up an hour earlier than needed and do said housework.
Set a good time to go to sleep (and stick to it!)
Most adults need about 8 hours of sleep. So if you know you need to be up at 7am, don’t wait until 11.30pm before heading upstairs, start getting ready for bed early and make sure you shut your eyes at 11pm. A great way to help with this is a sleep tracker like a fitbit. this has helped me learn about my sleep habits and get a better nights sleep by going to bed on time.
Get into a good bedtime routine
Set out your clothes for the next day. Switch of your phone. Read for 30 minutes. Meditate. Put on your pyjamas. Have a hot bath. Listen to some relaxing music. Watch a comforting film. Anything that makes you feel relaxed and ready for a great nights sleep, which in turn will set you up for a good morning.
Lavender, chamomile and vanilla are lovely soothing scents which are great to get you to sleep the night before. Have a chammomile tea, spritz your pillow with Lavender fabric mist, or have a vanilla scented bath before bed. In the morning, use fresh citrus scents or vibrant peppermint. Try spritzing on perfume with top notes of mandarin and orange blossom as you dress, or maybe showering with a citrus scented shower gel. I love this one from Lush. Peppermint tea is a great caffeine-free way of invigorating your senses first thing.
Speaking of Caffeine…
I avoid it like the plague as I have an intolerance to it; but it also helps me sleep, and I find there are other ways to wake up without it. Caffeine is an addictive irritant substance that can cause all kinds of adverse effects on your health; including heart, bowel, bladder and blood pressure problems, so it might be time to think about quitting.
Nail your morning routine
I have 2 hours in the morning between waking up and leaving for work. In that time, because I have my routine nailed, I am able to get the housework done, write my daily bullet journal entry, eat a fulfilling, healthy breakfast, shower, give myself a facial, pack my lunch, dress well; and do my hair & makeup. Part of this is due to some preparation the night before. The other part of this is due to my “no phone until it’s done” policy. I adopted this after my epiphany that I use my phone / tablet as a way of procrastinating. I also have a “No phones in the bedroom” policy. Which means I use a proper alarm clock and don’t stay up late scrolling.
Don’t hit “Snooze”.
We’re all guilty of the “5 more minutes” attitude; but you’ll be so glad when you leap out of bed, as once the painful “waking up” phase is over, you’ll have all that extra time for doing whatever it is you need to, and you’ll feel so much better for it! My usual routine is to leap out of bed at 6.30am, and go to the bathroom for 10 minutes of “waking up”. This means turning on the bright bathroom light; brushing my teeth, washing my face and then splashing it with cold water. It’s horrid, but once I’m awake, I feel epic and ready to take on the day.
Breakfast. Breakfast. Breakfast.
SO many people I know skip this meal. It’s so important that you don’t! If you eat breakfast you’re less likely to snack in the morning and more likely to be focussed and ready for whatever the day throws at you. Especially of you eat the right thing. I tend to opt for a handful of muesli, mixed berries, chia seeds, agave nectar, and fat-free, sugar-free greek yoghurt, with a glass of water or sugar free squash. This keeps me going until lunchtime, but is still low-calorie and full of vitamins, fibre and protein. Fruit as part of your breakfast is also really great because the tartness of things like oranges and raspberries are another thing that rouses your senses and helps in the waking up process – just make sure you drink water between cleaning your teeth and eating fruit. That taste – bleugh!
And last but not least – allow yourself the odd lie in.
Nobody is perfect. Nobody can sleep eight hours every night, or stick to a routine 100% of the time. But that’s what days off were invented for, right? So you could stay in bed as late as you feel like and not have to worry about kids/work/school etc. Also, Lie-ins are a great way to re-charge and set yourself up for the next batch of early mornings.
So, how do you fare in the mornings? Are you an early bird like me? Do you like getting up or hate leaving your bed? Drop me a line as usual.