Waking up earlier is accomplished by two things; motivation and determination. I am not talking about moms of newborns or moms of sick kiddos who barely sleep at all. However, the rest of us who get 8 hours of sleep plus each night, we can wake up earlier.
I have been in that place where I am just too tired. When nursing a newborn or caring for a medically fragile child who just will. not. sleep., there is no motivation in the world that can get me out of bed at 4:30am. If that is you, this post is not for you.
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1. Watch what you eat before bed. Don’t go to bed on a full stomach. This allows your body to complete the early digestive process while you are awake and active. Also, avoid caffeine, spicy foods, sugar and carbs as these are known sleep disruptors, especially sugar. You may not wake completely, the processing of sugar can pull you out of a deep sleep state. Consider giving up processed sugar completely.
2. Get prepared the night before. Have you heard the saying, “A good day starts the night before”? It really is true! Don’t wake up already overwhelmed. Give yourself a good start the night before. Here are some things you can do the night before to make your mornings easier:
3. Set your alarm and keep your phone or clock on the other side of your room. Ideally, put your alarm near the first thing you need to do when you get out of bed. Once you are on your feet, it is much easier to stay out of bed. If you are cold in the morning, lay a sweatshirt next to your alarm.
4. Go to bed earlier. You knew this one was coming. Going to bed earlier allows your body to get enough rest to get started earlier. In order to get to bed earlier, have an evening routine that works. I set a reminder on my phone to tell me it is time to go to bed, then I run through my typical evening routine, and when it is finished, I just go to bed. Even if you are not sleeping, your body is resting. Avoid electronics and other things that might keep you awake.
6. Have something to look forward to. Give yourself a treat for getting up earlier. Do something that you would not be able to do when your children are awake like: exercise, bible study, work on that blog or small business you want to start, or just have some alone time. I get up earlier because, with six children, it is the only time I have alone. When I go to the gym, I reward myself with listening to podcasts while I work out, and taking a shower in a place where no one will interrupt me. You see how that works?
Tip: Change the sound of your alarm to help you accomplish this task. When you have consistently pushed a snooze button and gone back to sleep at the sound of a particular alarm, sometimes you are not even consciously pushing the snooze. It is a conditioned response. Use a new sound to help you create a new habit, and try to consistently get up quickly when the alarm goes off.