It’s been told to us time and time again: In order to be successful, we must wake up early.
If I could relate myself to any person when I even remotely hear this line, bah humbug!
Seriously, though — I am not a morning person at all.
When I was in high school, I used to bribe myself to wake up early by promising myself a nap right when I got home.
Which never happened, by the way — but it was a nice thought.
Although the idea of going to sleep early is incredibly pleasing, these past few weeks I’ve tried (and failed) one too many times to wake up early.
I began realizing that I needed to give myself an intention, Why am I waking up early?
Yeah, it’s nice and I’d have more time in my day but my schedule is so crazy that just it giving me more time to my day wasn’t enough.
Whenever we’re looking at things we want to happen, giving yourself a reason to back up that want is going to make it so much easier to actually manifest it.
Enjoying this read? You may want to check this out: The Perfect Pampering Routine
At the moment, I wake up between 6-7am from Saturday to Wednesday.
Because I work from home, this works for me — however, I’ve been realizing that although I’m awake by 6am on the weekend, is just because I have to work.
Like, seriously — that’s my only motivation.
Today, I woke up at 5:45am feeling awake and fell back to sleep!
What the heck!
I ended up waking up at 6:08am, scrambling to get to my work computer and rush to get everything done that I should have gotten done by 6am.
Because I have this infatuation with my snooze button and staying in bed, I could have possibly slept in longer than 6:08am.
There have been times that I wont even hear my alarm after pressing snooze — which is not okay.
On the days I work during the week, I start my shifts at 10am however we have our team meetings Monday and Tuesday mornings.
Since my jobs’ main office is based on the East Coast, their 9:30am meetings have me up by 6:30am which can be a drag ’cause I love getting those extra few hours of shut-eye.
Unfortunately for me, or luckily — I haven’t decided yet, me sleeping in until 8/9am on the days I work and missing meetings isn’t something that I want to be doing anymore.
Sleeping is great, but I’ve trained myself these past couple of weeks to be in bed by ~9:30pm so I know I’m getting more than enough sleep even if I wake up by 7am the latest.
So what’s the problem? Why am I not waking up early?
I honestly think it’s because I’m not giving myself a why.
Why do I want to wake up early?
Hopefully at the end of this post we’ll be able to come to a good conclusion.
In the meantime, I’m going to share with you a few things I’ve been implementing that are proven to work, I just haven’t followed through on all of them.
Start your day the night before
This is something that I actually have been implementing.
If you checked out my last blog post, you’ll have read about me listening to this podcast called The Simple Show.
I love that they talk about simple living, and it has really gotten me to re-think a lot of things that I do (and don’t do) in my life.
I’ve also been loving this technique called The 20-minute Rule where essentially you put on a timer for 20 minutes and just lightly clean around your living room, kitchen, or if you live in a small space like I do – then you’re whole apartment!
I love this because it helps me carve out a little bit of time out of my day, whether it’s before or after work, to just lightly clean up my desk, coffee table, the kitchen, the bathroom and just tidy up.
Another thing that has been helping me a lot in the morning is making sure that the kitchen is clean before going to bed.
I know, how dreadful!
But we have to do it.
I love coffee and now that I use a french press, I catch myself leaving it in my pile of dirty dishes throughout the day and unfortunately, throughout the night.
Some people have coffee as their motivation in the morning, and trust me, I’ve tried that and for some reason it’s just not enough.
Or maybe I just haven’t been trying hard enough…
Instead of leaving dishes dirty for myself in the morning, I just try to say fuck it and do the damn dishes.
Most of the time I just turn on a podcast and it almost always takes me less than 20-25 minutes.
This way, I won’t have a frustrating amount of dishes to worry about in the morning (if at all!) and I’ll have a clean french press and mug for waiting for me!
This has actually been an added step in my routine, and I kind of don’t hate it… shhh!
For the longest time I thought my evening routine had to be glamorous and luxurious like other bloggers and Youtubers show us – but it really doesn’t!
Your nightly routine can literally be doing the dishes and falling asleep with a book. Seriously!
Currently, I’ve slowly built a nightly routine that works for me!
Honestly, it takes time and we have to be open to change and failure ’cause sometimes we won’t check off all the points on our list (and that’s okay!)
I currently love my evening routine and it’s so incredibly simple while putting me in a place that softly eases me to sleep.
It’s become so second nature that it’s just a given that I do it each thing every night.
Those of us who have read into all the ways we can wake up early have heard the following:
What you do right when you wake up is how you set the foundation for the rest of your day.
So hitting snooze a bunch of times within the first moments of you waking up just to squeeze in maybe an extra 30 minutes of disgruntled shut-eye might not the best way for you to start your day.
Not just that, but you’re going to be incredibly tired by the time you do wake up, so might as well just wake up and stop assaulting the snooze button!
Like I mentioned earlier, I can’t say that I have completely accomplished this one just yet, but I’m trying!!
Have you guys heard of an app that makes you do math questions in order to turn off the alarm?
Yep. I need that one. I’m also terrible at math, so we all know that’s going to keep me up.
What I’ve been currently using is the ‘Bedtime’ option on the iPhone’s Alarm app.
This is useful for me because it helps me know exactly what time I need to go to sleep by in order to get a set amount of hours of sleep.
You can also set yourself a reminder if you want to be in bed before it’s time to sleep.
If you’re like me, I love reading and meditating right before bed and putting an alarm for 45 minutes before bed gives me enough time to squeeze in some reading and my 15-minute evening meditation.
We’re told that we need at least 7-9 hours of sleep a night to function throughout the day…
I used to think that 7 hours was enough, but I’m realizing I need more.
I love sleep!
The idea of me getting 8.5 to 9 hours of sleep sound so amazing that it might just make me get up.
‘Cause who needs more sleep than that!? (I know I don’t!)
For example, if I want to be awake by 5:45am and want at least 8 hours of sleep, I would need to be in bed by 9:45pm.
Which could work!
Now, do I need 8 hours of sleep every night? I think 7.5-8 hours is more then enough so 9:30-10pm is my sleeping window.
If I were to do this, it means that Saturday to Wednesday I’d need to wake up by 5:45am and be asleep by 9:30-10pm for a full 7.5-8 hours of sleep.
On my days off, I can sleep in until whatever time I want!
Also, on weekends I could actually take a nap if I wanted to.
Something that I really need to just do is jump out of bed — yes, jump!
This morning when I woke up at 5:45, I felt great!
Until I fell back asleep.
I’ve had so many mornings like this and I know if I just jump out of bed, like literally jump then I’ll be up!
I’m already on my feet, no going back now!
… Maybe we’ll start off with just putting my phone on my window sill or something to get me out of bed.
I also heard a really good word of advice that may work for you:
Push your alarm back 5 minutes each day and within a month you’ll be waking up a whole hour earlier!
So if you wake up at 7am every morning but want to aim for 6am? Start off one day waking up at 6:55am, then the following at 6:50am, and the following at 6:45am, so on and so forth until you’ve reached your goal!
In a month you’ll be waking up at your desired time and it’ll happen so naturally!
Unfortunately for me, I usually wake up at 8:30-9am and doing that is not something I can implement daily since there are days I need to be awake by 6-7am.
Take it slow & don’t over plan
The biggest reason why I enjoy the aspect waking up early is because I get to just take things slow. I get to hear the birds sing, watch the sunrise, journal.
I don’t have to be in a rush and it gives me a chance to work on my morning routine while also taking my time to actually wake up and get started on things that are productive like making coffee or doing some yoga.
I often find myself just thinking of the next day the night before and that morning I’ll feel so overwhelmed by all the plans for my day that I don’t even want to get out of bed.
Sleeping in is causing me to feel anxious and affecting my productivity, which I do not like!
I think I need to switch the way I think of mornings. Yeah, I have meetings and yeah, I need to wake up earlier — but that’s not so bad!
I’m also able to plan my day or my week, maybe journal and write down things I’m grateful for. Maybe do some light morning yoga, drink some coffee out on the balcony.
Everyone is going crazy in the morning, rushing to work or taking their kids to school while I’m able to give myself the option of having a relaxing morning, so why not do it?
I work from home, I don’t need to worry about driving to work and dread traffic — so why is it so hard for me to wake up!?
Honestly, the more I write this post the more I realize that it’s my perception of mornings.
I don’t want to wake up early because I love sleep, so I don’t.
Simple as that.
But how do I change that mindset?
For sure it’s going to take some time, but I think by implementing these things I’ll be able to wake up earlier and enjoy my mornings.
The way I’m looking at mornings is the exact reason why I haven’t been sticking to waking up early.
I plan too much for myself and overthink my day-to-day rather than allowing myself to take it slow.
I know we were talking about what I should look forward to in the mornings, but let’s also look at what I don’t look forward to…
Something I don’t look forward to is a full list of things to do for the morning and dirty dishes.
I’ve already told myself I’ll resolve this by making sure the apartment is as clean as possible before going to bed, but something else I’ll be doing is keeping my days clear until that morning.
Unless I have a huge to-do list for the week, then of course I’ll write it down — but not in the same place as my daily planner.
This may be a bit of a challenge, but I think it’ll be easier for me to create a realistic list the morning of and build from there.
If I have things to do later that week or just a general check-list, that’ll be someplace else away from my daily to-do.
I already have a somewhat similar bujo layout that I think will really help with this, so let’s see how that goes!
Learn what works for you and implement it daily
Keep the mindset that all these things you want to implement in your life will happen as long as you find what works for you.
Whether it’s waking up early, reading more, or starting your own business, learn what it is that works for you and implement it little by little so that it can start to be a part of your day rather than something you groan and moan about.
That’s what I really want, all of these goals and aspirations I have for myself are mostly just things I want to do somewhat subconsciously.
Just like brushing my teeth, I want this to be something I just do because I should and because it’ll make me feel good.
Find what feels good for you and work on that. What do you want to do? Why do you want to do it? How are you going to do it?
Don’t worry about comparing yourself to others.
It’s okay to take advice and insight from others, but take what everyone says lightly and if something stands out, work into that and see how it feels.
I really think we’re capable of achieving all of our goals and aspirations, we just need to find what works for us as a individual.
What does that mean to you?
I think I’ve learned what my why (reason behind going to sleep early) is and that’s because it’s going to make me feel good. It’s going to allow me to take my time.
I’m going to be awake anyway, and more than half of my mornings, I end up feeling bad I didn’t wake up earlier so fuck it!
Why do I want to wake up early? To feel good, enjoy my silence, and slowly start my day.
Why do you want to wake up early?