Is your alarm clock the bane of your sleep schedule? Does the thought of getting up “early” make you squirm? If you said yes to either of these, rest assured you’re not alone – getting up early is hard. But it’s not impossible. Here are 7 simple tricks to outsmart your alarm and beat the sun before it comes up.
- Work Backwards: Being an early riser means being an early sleeper as well. For example, if you want to get up two hours earlier, go to bed two hours earlier. If you skimp out, you’ll be giving yourself less sleep each night and that’s not healthy.
- Plan Your Morning: No – you don’t need to make an itinerary every morning, but it’s good practice to know the first few things you’ll be doing once you get out of bed. A productive morning will come much easier if you make your decisions ahead of time: what you’ll eat, what you’ll wear, and what time you’ll leave for work. If you don’t plan your morning, it’s much easier to get distracted and undo all that hard work you put in to get up!
- Switch to Decaf: If you’re caffeine craver, flip the decaf switch no later than early afternoon. Science says the half-life of caffeine is 4-6 hours, so make sure you’ve been purged of it before you go to bed.
- Snooze or Lose: What’s the point of waking up early only to go back to bed? Every time you snooze, your body’s only desire is to sleep more – don’t cave. Set a time to wake up and stick to it.
- Set a Digital Curfew: The last thing your body needs before sleep is your bright phone screen or laptop. Make sure to set those aside at least an hour before you sleep to let your brain shut down with the rest of your body.
- Don’t Booze Snooze: While alcohol may put you to bed, it certainly won’t wake you up. Despite its drowsy effects, alcohol is notorious for causing disruptive sleep cycles – the last thing you need on your early-waking adventure.
- Incentivize it: Make waking up early worth it to you. Make a big breakfast, go for a jog, or even read a book. Having something to look forward to will wipe the dread from waking up early.