Recently I have found my self hitting the snooze button on my alarm more and more in recent weeks. To the point where I am scrambling to get small task done so that I can be organised and ready for work. This has become a bad habit and one that I am working on breaking.
The trouble is that it is so hard to wake up early. Hard is not the right word, it sucks waking up early. No one really wants to do it and if they say they do then there is something wrong with them and you don’t need that negativity in your life.
Saying that, I like who I am when I wake up early. I like how much I can achieve and I like how that sense of productivity makes me feel. I just don’t like waking up early.
In today’s post I am going to talk about some ways to break the habit of hitting snooze and ways that can help you jump out of bed with a spring in your step rather then that slow roll and grunt we make when the covers get kicked off.
Before I jump into some more practical tips, I just wanted to touch on the fact why we hit the snooze button in the first place. Basically it comes down to discipline or lack there of.
We don’t set the alarm for the morning just to hit snooze for hour and then wake up in panic wondering why our alarm clock didn’t some how drag us out of bed?
That’s on you. When it goes off in the morning we have a choice, to rise the occasion (see what I did there, rise! Classic) or press snooze, roll over and pretend like it never happen.
Start small is the best piece of advice I can give you in this situation. If you go from waking up at 8am and jump straight to 4:30am you are going to feel like shit, it won’t get easier and you ended up just giving up and returning to the way things are.
On the other hand, if you go from 8am alarm to setting a 7:30am alarm for the first week and become used to that, the subtle decrease won’t be such a shock to the system.
It’s about building that muscle and discipline slowly by getting up when it goes off the first time. Small baby steps are the way to go.
Now I’ll be honest, there are always going to be days where you simply don’t want to and that’s only natural. The way I got round this was to have one day a week to sleep in.
One of two things will happen when you give this a try 1) you’ll wake up around the same time your alarm normally goes off and won’t be able to go back to sleep cause you are so used to get up. 2) You’ll sleep for most of the day.
Personally I struggle sleeping in. After a week of rising early and I let myself sleep in I get to about 6:30am and I am wide awake and bored so I end up just getting up.
If I am to sleep all day, then I need to be either really sick or hangover.
Now that we have that out of the way, lets jump into some practical steps into getting you sleep heads out of bed on that first alarm.
1. Appreciate that fact that you get to wake up
This go heavy straight from the get go but I personally feel like it s biggy. Instead of just hitting snooze and swearing at our alarms for just doing their job, focus on the fake that you woke up.
Focus on the fact every morning is different, with new opportunities and that is a new day for you to go out do whatever you want. That alarm goes off and you get to wake up, so don’t waste it.
2. Have a reason to get up
This makes it so much easier to rise and shine in the morning. Have purpose to get up. If you are just getting up cause your alarm said so and then spend the next hour scrolling on the internet then you might as well just stayed in bed.
What I do is the day before I spend five minutes writing out my to do list. I set up three things that I deem to be the most important items on the list and stick them up the top to make sure they are done first. Out of those three I select one and that is the first thing I do in the morning.
For example this morning I need to setup my email newsletter, write a blog post and concept the hero image for the post. In my head the most important item out of those three is write the blog post. This way I can then set up the newsletter for that post and pick out the blurb that will go in the newsletter. From there I now know the topic and can pick out a phrase or use the header to create my hero image.
Knowing you have a purpose to get out of bed makes putting those feet on the floor so much easier.
3. Small steps
As I mentioned above take small steps when you want to start getting up early. Don’t go from 7am to 5am, you’ll hit the snooze button every time and you won’t break the habit or form a new one. Say to yourself, “this week I’m going to get up at 6:30am and sleep in on Saturday.”
This way it is less mentally daunting and not so physically draining. You are going to be tired to start with but slowly your body will adapt and before you know it you’ll hit the ground running everyday.
4. Go to bed earlier
This should be pretty obvious but for some reason it took me way to long to realize. I am by no means a night person, usually in bed around 9-9:30pm and looking for sleep around 10pm.
That’s now though, when I first wanted to start getting up early I was going to bed around 12pm-1am and was wondering why I felt like I had been hit by a bus when my alarm went of at 4:30am.
I would suck it up, get out of bed do what I had to do and get on with my day. Normally I would start to lose focus around 3pm like everyone else but I quickly notice I was now losing focus around 12pm and could hardly stay awake come 5pm.
This was no good, not sustainable and highly likely to fail. So I sat down and had a heart to heart with myself and changed my routine. Now I get somewhere between 6-7 hours sleep and feel much more rested when my alarm goes of in the morning. You need make sure you are getting enough sleep first before you go waking up to early.
5. Put your alarm on the other side of the room
This is a good little trick and the reason being, once it goes off you need to stop it or it will drive you up the wall. When it is on the other side of the room you have to physically get out of bed and turn it off. Now that you are up, you might as well stay up.
6. Turn the lights on
Once that sucker starts to sing in the morning, flick your bed side light on. It is the most unpleasant thing you will ever do but it works. That sudden shock of light in your face is enough to start the fire in your brain and kick start those basic motor skills you need to drag your sorry ass out of bed.
We have all had that feeling before when we are almost asleep and then someone turns the light on and it feels like you have been slapped in the face by a wet fish. That exact feeling is what can help you get out of bed in the early hours of the morning.
7. Wake up at the same time
I’ve talked about the importance of routine in previous posts and the same goes for this as well. Once your body becomes a custom to waking up early it will quickly adjust and start doing it naturally. I now consistently wake up 5 to 10 minutes before my alarm starts to sing. This is both a great feeling and shitty one. It feels good because waking up naturally is a great way to wake up rather then having some loud noisy thing scream in your ear. It sucks cause that’s 10 minutes of valuable sleep that I just missed out of.
Now that I’m awake I tend to roll out just before my alarm goes off and get on with what needs to be done.
This is not an easy change to make. Every fiber of your body will scream at you to stay in bed where it is warm and safe, don’t listen to them.
I would also suggest trying all of this tips individually to start with rather then jumping into them all at once. You’ll probably find that some of these will work better for you then others or you might find that you need to use all of them at once.
Just remember to start small and make sure you are getting enough sleep to start with.