It’s no secret that waking up earlier is beneficial, there are thousands of articles telling you why you should. Early risers are linked to higher productivity in the workplace, healthier weights, and overall, a more optimistic approach to life in general. It’s something about the person who chooses to wake up at the crack of dawn and start their day with a sweat session followed by a green juice that really gets you thinking: how are they so “happy”?! The good news is–starting your day earlier for any ritual (not just exercise and green juice) is good for your well-being.
I was never a morning person until about 3 years ago when I began my Ashtanga yoga practice. The class is 6 days a week and starts at 7 AM. The first few months weren’t bad because I was so excited about all of the new things I was learning, and my best friend went to class with me. Then after awhile, I started to feel tired all of the time and blamed it on my 6 AM wake up. I stopped going, started sleeping in again, but nothing changed–I was still tired and grumpy constantly. It wasn’t until I realized through mentors and research that it was actually my home morning routine bogging me down. I woke up, hit snooze 4-5 times, brushed my teeth and poured my coffee to-go, then was off. I didn’t give my mind time to wake up with my body. Then, I started waking up at 5:30 AM (for a 7 AM start) to give myself time to relax and wake up slow. There was a huge difference in my energy levels and mindset–I felt better than ever, and have been on this path for about two years now.
The important thing to note is that we should never sacrifice sleep. Go to sleep earlier to rise earlier–Here Are 5 Reasons To Set Your Alarm Earlier:
- Consistent Flow of Energy. If you can commit to going to bed early and getting a solid 7-8 hours of sleep, waking up at 6:30 when you don’t have to be at work until 9 can actually increase your energy levels. Why? When we don’t give our brain enough time to wake up and rush out the door while staring at our smart phone, we disrupt our brain patterns which causes us to actually expend more energy. With a relaxed, thoughtful wake up, we give ourselves time to breathe and digest–letting energy flow at a constant pace for hours.
- Do More of What You Love. Read a new book, catch up on your favorite blogs, plan a staycation for the weekend, be silent, make a gourmet breakfast that you would normally only eat on Sunday morning, froth your own milk for a homemade latte, meditate, watch the sunrise, cuddle with your lover, play with your dog, take a bath… The list goes on. Think about it: How amazing would your day be if you took an aromatherapy bath before work?!
- Be More Proactive. The phrase “early bird gets the worm!” is quite true. When we allot ourselves more hours in the day, we get more done. It’s that simple. Not only that, there are numerous studies that show how early risers are more proactive, not just productive, than night owls.
- Make Healthier Choices. When you start your day by making the proactive choice to wake up early–you’re bound to stick to that cycle and make healthier choices throughout the entire day. Research shows that those who wake up earlier make more time to workout (even if that’s not in the morning) and choose healthier meals throughout the day.
- Find Your Muse. The morning is when we have the most time to sit in stillness. Generally our roommate or significant other is still asleep and no one is texting, calling, e-mailing you. It’s a peaceful time that is hard to find in the evening. Take this time to find inspiration in your life and a moment to conjure up things you want to accomplish. I can tell you one thing, this website would never be alive if I hadn’t done this.
There you have it. Start small and set your alarm 30 minutes prior to what it’s at now. After 1 week, set it 30 minutes earlier. Make sure you get to sleep earlier, too, because lack of sleep is not what we’re after!