This article will teach you the secret of how to wake up earlier.
There really is no secret, but how I manage to be a morning person is not obvious.
Maybe it’s genetics. Maybe it’s something you can control. Here’s a hint: I wrote this so you can PROBABLY control it.
The secret to waking up earlier is simple. Once you learn it, you’ll wonder why you hadn’t figured it out earlier.
Or maybe you already knew, but feigned ignorance as a convenient excuse.
Why Do You Want To Wake Up Earlier
It doesn’t matter why you want to be an early riser.
The only thing that matters is that you have a powerful reason for beating the sun up. If your why is strong enough, you’ll endure any how.
There’s no great magic to how morning people operate.
There’s just willpower and action. Morning people decide to move and don’t let their feelings make them to stop.
This is impossible for non-morning people to understand.
They think that if they just go to bed earlier, they’ll have more energy when they climb out of bed at 5 a.m. Sure, technically speaking, they’ll have more energy.
But what about the thing that ACTUALLY matters?
(Read: “So You Wanna Be Part of The 1%?”)
What about their mindset and motivation?
Extra energy won’t make a difference when it’s the middle of January and your bed feels warm and cozy. You’ll want to stay in it until the last possible minute. Many stay in bed even later than this.
Unless your mentality is airtight, the comfort of your bed will win out against your best intentions–EVERY TIME!
Early Risers Have A Premium On Willpower
When your alarm strikes, you must exercise will power.
Without that, any tactic or list of tips for waking up early is worthless.
Don’t feel ashamed for needing an alarm clock to wake up earlier. Don’t worry if you’re still groggy when you climb out of bed.
No one ever said being an early riser was easy. No one ever said your body wouldn’t hate you for it. The only guarantee is that it’s simple. How you feel about it is irrelevant.
You need to exert control and mastery over your mind and body.
To become the master of your mind and body, you need to become aware of your mind and body. After all, you can’t exert your will power over something that you aren’t cognizant of.
When you wake up early and it’s cold outside, every fiber of your being will want you to go back to bed. You’ll feel like a zombie that’s barely operating on the brink of consciousness.
This is when it comes down to will power.
This is when it comes down to motion.
The combination of the two is what will make you an early riser.
(Read: “On Self-Control”)
How Use Willpower and Motion To Be An Early Riser
You have to immediately get in motion.
Start moving. Don’t stop for at least 15 minutes.
A great trick for waking up early is putting your alarm clock across the room. This forces you to get completely out of bed and start the day in motion.
I like to wake up and immediately start working out, cleaning or writing. While it might seem like writing is a sedentary activity, producing creative work is highly engaging.
It’s better than a cup of coffee. The trick is to avoid anything that doesn’t engage you. Engagement is the new caffeine.
Should You Use Coffee To Wake Up Early?
There is a debate about the use of coffee for waking up early. I don’t have the professional authority to settle this debate. All I can offer is my opinion.
Since it’s my opinion, that means that many people—possibly even you—will disagree. I don’t think it matters if you start your morning with a cup of coffee.
Coffee tastes delicious.
Especially if you use a stainless steel french press. If you’ve got even half of my tolerance to caffeine, it won’t even make a difference anyway.
You’re going to feel tired until you get your mind engaged and ready to kick the day’s ass. The secret to waking up early is that simple.
Force yourself to get in motion.
Starting The Day With Purpose Is Better Than Coffee
It’s easy to get out of bed earlier when you know why you’re getting out of bed earlier.
It’s even easier when you’re excited for whatever you have planned for the day.
That’s because you’re starting the day with a purpose. A purpose is more than just a routine task or your job.
Sure, how you earn a living can be something you’re extremely excited about. But it likely isn’t. If you aren’t sure, use the “Kid on Christmas Morning” test:
Are you regularly so excited for the next day’s tasks that you have difficulty going to sleep the night before and it’s the first thing you think about doing when you wake up?
If you don’t feel like this about your job on a regular basis, it’s not something that aligns with your purpose. My suggestion is to find something that generates this feeling within you.
(Read: “The Formula For Developing Deep Gratitude”)
It doesn’t even have to be something that immediately pays you. You can generate this feeling about waking up early to make progress on any one of these goals:
- Starting a business
- Learning a new skill
- Writing a book
- Getting in shape
- Building a blog or personal brand
- Any other goal that will increase your value and allow you to get more out of life
All that matters is that you have something that makes you want to get out of bed so badly that it takes more effort for you to go back to sleep than get to work.
(Read: “30 Lessons From 30 Years of Life”)
Have Some Gratitude To Gain An Hour of Rest
If you have a miserable attitude, your sleep is almost certainly suffering. This isn’t just some new age mumbo-jumbo about the power of gratitude. A study published by Sleep Science and Practice reported that people who felt they had more meaning and purpose in their lives had fewer sleep disturbances like sleep apnea and restless leg syndrome.
From the study:
Researchers asked 823 older adults, average age 79, to fill out questionnaires about their sleep quality and their feelings about their lives, such as how strongly they agreed with statements like “I feel good when I think of what I’ve done in the past and what I hope to do in the future.”
The results showed an association between a more positive outlook and better sleep. People who felt their lives had meaning were 63% less likely to have sleep apnea and 52% less likely to have restless legs syndrome at the two-year follow-up.
Maybe people who feel good about life are proactive about finding their purpose, working towards it, and thus creating a higher quality of sleep, Higher quality of sleep makes it easier to wake up.
Or maybe it’s that for whatever reason, the people who figured out how to get a good night’s rest are best equipped for finding and living a purpose.
Regardless of how it works, one thing is remarkably clear: the better you feel about life, the better you sleep. The better you sleep, the easier it will be to wake up earlier.
A Summary Of What You Need To Wake Up Earlier
- Willpower to rise
- Motion to keep you from going back to sleep
- An alarm away from your bedside to help you get in motion
- A good night’s sleep so you feel recharged
- A purpose that passes that “Kid on Christmas Morning” Test
- Appreciation for the gift of life