I have never been a morning person. Since I started school at the age of 5, I would hit the snooze button at least 10 times until I absolutely had to get up. I'd roll out of bed and throw on whatever I could find, brush my teeth, wash my face and be out the door.
I never thought I could become a morning person. But, after trying and failing many times, I finally found a routine that stuck. And if I can become a morning person -- trust me, anyone can.
1. Stop hitting snooze.
I used to be overly ambitious when I would set my alarm. I thought I could go from waking up at 8 every day to waking up at 6. Spoiler alert: I couldn't.
Instead of setting your alarm much earlier from day one, start by setting your alarm just 10 minutes earlier than usual until it becomes your natural waking time. This could take three days or it could take a couple weeks.
Continue this strategy until you're able to wake up at the desired time without an alarm. Keeping your alarm on the other side of the room helps you avoid that subconscious snooze.
2. Stay hydrated.
I'm sure you've heard it a thousand times, but this truly helped boost my energy levels in the morning. Dehydration depletes oxygen levels, making the grogginess and fatigue a regular part of your mornings.
Start drinking enough water to stay hydrated throughout the day and you'll find that waking will be a little easier.
3. Get to bed at a reasonable hour.
We've all found ourselves stalking our friend's brother's girlfriend's friend's Instagram late at night. You end up down the rabbit hole looking at pictures from someone's Cancun trip in 2012.
You have no idea how you got there but you can't look away. Stop that habit now. Waking up early starts the night before so put down the phone and get some sleep.
Also, the bedtime feature on the iPhone can be a godsend for getting your sleep schedule regulated.
4. Start moving while you're still in bed.
A lot of people say working out to start your day makes you a morning person but, that's false. If you're not already a morning person, how will you ever be able to just hop out of bed and head to the gym or for a run?
Baby steps here, you guys. Start by stretching while you lay there. Once waking up starts to get a little easier, get out of bed and stretch or do yoga. As long as you're moving and getting your blood flowing, it will work.
Once you're really getting the hang of your mornings and want to take it to the next level, then you're ready for a full morning workout.
5. Schedule an activity that makes you feel good.
If you start your day doing something you enjoy and look forward to, you'll be more motivated to get out of bed and do it. Whether it's meditating, reading, walking your dog or watching a tv show, plan to do it in the morning.
6. Make your alarm a song that pumps you up.
I used to use that annoying fire alarm to wake up in the morning and it instantly put me in a bad mood. Hearing that noise started my day on the wrong foot and I would pull the covers back over my head and hit snooze. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dMK_npDG12Q
Once I set my alarm to a song that made me feel good and I could jam to, I would let it play instead of hitting snooze.
Maybe you'll even dance your way out of bed if you pick a song that's perfect for you.
7. Plan the night before.
One of the major reasons I struggled waking up is because I was thinking about all the menial tasks I had to do. Picking out clothes, making a to-do list for the day, walking to the kitchen to make coffee — the list of menial tasks goes on.
I started picking out my clothes, putting my notebook and pen next to my bed, making sure I had water and even setting my coffee timer the night before. Having all these small tasks already done made it much easier to get my morning started.
8. Eat healthy.
Easier said than done, right? But, eating healthy on a regular basis keeps your body in check and on schedule. A healthy routine in general helps you stay on track and get better rest. We've all had nights where we drink to much and then eat the worst food we can find and it's always a nightmare to wake up the next morning.
Keep those to a minimum and your body and mind will thank you.
9. Don't draw the curtains.
No one wants to wake up while cozy and warm in dark room, especially in the winter. Getting some natural light in the morning will trigger your body to naturally start waking up.
Don't get discouraged if you sleep in a couple times. Establishing a consistent sleep schedule can take a long time. Keep at it and you will eventually get there.