I’ve never been one to sleep in late, and trust me, this is not by choice. Some days I even get angry at how early I wake up. I envy those people cuddled in bed, sleeping away their entire mornings. But then again maybe not. You see, ever since I can remember I have woken up early as in before 6 am. Even as a kid on the weekends, I don’t think I ever slept past 7 or 8 am at the most. My parents and grandparents were also early rises – who knows it may be genetic.
Later on after graduating high school and joining the Army, I definitely did not sleep in late. But something happened when I was doing basic training in the Army. For the first time, I realized how valuable waking up early really is. While other new recruits were struggling to get up in the morning before 5 am I was already up at 4 am. By the time the others were beginning to crawl out of bed, I had already showered, brushed my teeth, ironed my uniform, and shined my boots. Waking up early helped me avoid those long lines to the showers, sinks, and laundry machines. More importantly though, it helped me have a sense of well being knowing that I had taken care of the things I needed to do and avoided punishment by the drill sergeants.
In this article, I”m going to teach you some of the tricks and methods I use to wake up early and refreshed. The first step to jumping out of bed early is to have a good night’s sleep.
How to Get a Good Nights Sleep
Not only do I wake up early but from time to time I suffer from insomnia, most people do too. I mention this because most people that give advice on sleeping well are already great deep sleepers, not me. As a matter of fact today I woke up at 3:04 am and couldn’t get back to sleep. So I rolled around until about 4 am and decided to go exercise. After I exercised for about an hour and a half, I came back in, showered, and even had time for a 30 minute cat nap.
Now, if you want to get a good night’s sleep, one of the first things to avoid is alcohol. It used to be that I had a couple of glasses of wine with dinner. I didn’t realize it initially, but the wine was giving me major heartburn in the middle of the night. Rather than get addicted to antacids, I quit drinking wine all together during the week. Aside from not having heartburn, there was the added benefit of not consuming an additional 200+ calories a day.
Not eating too much
Another point to consider is to not eat too much. Being stuffed can make for a bad night’s sleep, this will cause you to sleep uncomfortably and disrupt your sleep. Besides, if you continually eat a lot right before bed when your calorie burning is at its slowest, you will gain weight.
Not being hungry
Conversely, if you are hungry, you can’t fall asleep either, and this will prevent you from getting a good night’s rest and eventually waking up early. If you’re hungry before bed, I suggest one of three things that have worked for me.
- A glass of milk
- A Greek yogurt (they are the healthiest)
- A cup of cottage cheese (preferably low sodium)
Any of these three has enough protein to satisfy your hunger and not leave you feeling bloated.
Not being too hot or too cold
Another trick to getting a good night’s rest is to control the temperature. If you are too hot or too cold, you could wake up. Consider turning up or down your thermostat. Also take a look at your mattress, foam memory or sponge type mattresses tend to save the body heat, meaning they could make you hot at night.
Do you have sleep apnea?
If you are snoring a lot or your spouse has mentioned that you stop breathing while you sleep , you probably have sleep apnea. I put off going to the doctor for a very long time, until it became clear that I had to do something about my sleep apnea.
The first thing they did was have me go to a sleep study. I did a two night sleep study, each night was about a month apart. The first night, they hooked me up and with a bunch of cables to my head and body. The first night was to determine if I had sleep apnea and how severe. Two weeks later I went to see my doctor for the results and it turned out that I had severe sleep apnea and I had stopped breathing about 34 times an hour. No wonder I usually felt sleepy through out the day
About two weeks after that, I went in for the second night which was to determine how much air pressure my machine was going to be set at. And also to see how well I responded to the apnea machine. As it turns out, with the machine I only stopped breathing once every hour as opposed to 34 times without the machine. I now wake up feeling more refreshed and focused than ever before.
In the end, the point is that having sleep apnea will cause you to be tired in the morning and very sleepy throughout the day. So get checked out.
If you are napping everyday because you have to, read the above paragraphs. I’m not saying it isn’t nice every now and then on a lazy Saturday afternoon, but napping will generally keep you from going to sleep early and waking up early.
How to actually get up out of bed early.
Don’t think, just do.
If you have to use an alarm clock, don’t hit the snooze button. Put the alarm clock at enough of a distance that you have to get up to turn it off. Once you are up, head straight to the bathroom.
The most important thing is that you have to have a good reason to get up.
- Is it to study?
- Work on your business?
- to work out?
Schedule meetings, appointments, etc.. very early.
by scheduling things early, you don’t have a choice, you have to wake up early.
Have a buddy, this could be a friend, spouse, colleague that either already gets up early or that wants to start waking up early too. Now, you each have a responsibility to each other and can work on getting each other up early.
I hope this article helps you in your quest to get up earlier, the rewards of doing so are plentiful. Remember one of the ways the human body and mind create habits is to do something continuously for at least 30 days.
So don’t wait until Monday, next month, or next week-set your alarm clock tonight and wake up early tomorrow!If you found this helpful, please share it below. Thank you!