You know the saying: “The early bird gets the worm.” Now, I don’t know if you are in the worm business, or if you are even a bird for that matter. But, if you are an entrepreneur, the early time of the morning is when you can get a lot of work done. Here are twenty eight ways you can wake up earlier.
1. Leave The Shades Open
Its simple. The brighter it is, the easier it is to get up.
2. The Early Mindset
If you want to be ahead of the flow, be the “early bird,” then this is truly an attitude, a change of mindset. When you begin to see the results of your early morning endeavors, this creates an internal change within your own motivation. Additionally, rising earlier allows you to schedule some exercise time even if it just walking. Now you have even greater clarity and even more energy to tackle the rest of the day when others are just starting to awaken.
3. Have Your Spouse Help Out
If you can’t get yourself up and going early in the morning, consider getting your partner to help you out. Once I gave my husband the blessing to turn on the news and lights when he got up, I started getting up earlier too. I even get greeted with a kiss and a cup of coffee … now that’s a way to start the day off right!
4. Turn Off The LED Lights
Research shows that the blue lights that blink on so many of our computers, clocks, microwaves, televisions and even nightlights, actually stimulates our brain activity! Those lights keep us from enjoying deep, restful REM sleep. I turn off, or tape (black electrical tape) over all the lights in my apartment to ensure that the part of my brain that responds to light shuts down entirely at night.
5. Plan Ahead Subconsciously
Always have a plan to what you are going to do with the extra time you have in the morning by getting up early. The subconscious can play games with you if you don’t plan ahead. You may have planned to wake up early on a different day and then did nothing with additional time, so the next time you planned to wake up early, your body said to you ” ‘Nope, I am still sleeping” and rolled over. So make a plan the day before and complete all duties, your subconscious will then smile.
6. Early Doesn’t Mean Morning…Necessarily
Waking up early is never easy for me. I usually take cheat and take some NyQuill just to give me that extra push to fall asleep no matter what time. I have two alarm clocks in the house and I even decided to have a child…they wake up at 5am all the time. I am not saying my plan works for everyone, but it works for me…and probably every other parent out there too.
7. The Early Rise Mindset
Truly successful people get up earlier than anyone else. By the time the rest of the world is waking up, they already know what is going on not only in their world but also the rest of the world. They also have as much if not more done than anyone else by the time every one is waking up. This includes YOU! So if you want to be truly successful, then remember that your competitors are already up and running while you are literally still asleep on the job. GET UP and SEIZE the DAY!
I use Boomerang to schedule my emails, whether it’s early morning or when I know that user is pretty responsive or prefers to receive emails. For example, if I know Mike Michalowicz is a party animal who loves to respond after a few beers on a Friday night, at 2:59am, that’s when I schedule him to get my emails or if it’s an official reply to one of the customer enquiries, it goes 7:31am on Monday morning & guess who gets a prompt response. 🙂 No affiliation, just a happy client.
9. Stickk.com: Wake-up Or Pay
If you really want to get up earlier in the morning, then put some of your hard earned cash on the line and get a couple people to act as referees to keep you honest. I like using Stickk.com for this kind of commitment. If you don’t do what you say you’re going to do, you not only have to pay-up, but your cash goes to an anti-charity. A charity you wouldn’t want to be caught dead giving to. I double dog dare you to try it.
10. Get An Accountability Buddy
To wake up earlier, schedule a 15 minute early morning call with an accountability buddy. Share your daily food plan, exercise, sales calls, conversations, or whatever is important to each of you. Next day, report back to each other on if you met the prior day’s stated goals and once again go over what you are committing to for the day. Repeat the next day and so on.
11. Kids Know The Secret To Waking Up Early
Do you remember the Disney commercial with the kids who can’t sleep because they’re so excited about going to Disney World the next day? Perhaps you remember how anxious you were to get up early on Christmas morning. Both are examples we can learn from. Getting up early is easy when you have a compelling calling; something that excites you, something that you can’t wait to get to. Of course, a big glass of water just before you go to sleep won’t hurt either.
12. A High-Protein, No-Sugar Breakfast Does The Trick
I grew up on a dairy farm where I had to get up at 5 a.m. – and even though I’m in PR now, I still get up at 5 a.m. And, I start the day with eggs and turkey sausages, or some other lean, high-protein meal. No sugar! If you start eating a lot of sugar early in the morning, you’ll be wanting more sugar by mid-morning, and so the weight gain begins. Also, don’t be afraid to have a big early-morning breakfast: it takes the edge off your hunger and you have all day to burn it off.
13. Stay Enthused
After working for thirty years I can attest to the fact that when you are happy in what you are doing it is easier to get up and get moving. Now that my pursuits have changed from being an employee to one of entrepreneurship I am
getting up earlier and start work with more gusto.
In summary,if you are into your work you wake up with more vigor and want to start earlier.
14. Focus On Your Health, And An Earlier Day Will Follow
For me, getting out of bed early every morning was a real struggle until I started to take my health and fitness seriously. Every morning I now spin while watching the news and checking e-mail. And I never drink coffee – only decaffeinated tea. I know it sounds like this regimen will have you begging to crawl back into bed, but once you get your body off of the caffeine, the work out and tea will be all you need to feel fresh and ready to tackle the day, even if your day starts at 4:00 AM.
15. Keep Your Alarm Clock Far Away
Keeping your alarm clock by your bedside is one of the biggest obstacles to waking up earlier. One huge flaw exists for alarm clocks and that’s the snooze button. How many times do we wake up to the alarm only to slam our hand on the snooze button and roll back into the comforts of our sheets? Place your alarm clock as far away from your bedside as possible, forcing you to climb out of bed for a short walk in order to shut off the alarm. It’s an old trick, but it gets your morning started.
16. Let The Light In
Before you head to bed the night before, pull open your curtains or open up the blinds. This way, when morning hits, the sunlight will come through and illuminate your bedroom. Your body tells you it’s time for bed when it’s dark, thus you will want to keep your room as bright as possible if you wish to get up earlier in the morning. If you happen to sleep in a windowless room, another way is to set up a timer for your bedroom lights to go on each morning simultaneously with your alarm clock.
17. Make Plans For Each Morning
If you head to bed each night with something planned for the following morning, it helps give you the boost you need to climb out of bed. You can make plans to read two chapters of a book while you have your morning coffee. You can set a routine and write blog entries upon waking up each morning. Give yourself something to do and prevent yourself from idling in bed and risk falling back asleep. Knowing exactly what you want to do each morning will help you look forward to waking up.
18. Use Your Favorite Songs As Your Alarm
We all have a few favorite songs, all of which can change from time to time. If your alarm clock or phone has the option for customizable alarms, regularly change it to play your favorite songs. First off, you can start your morning on a good note. In addition, since it’s your favorite song, you’re less likely to try and hit the snooze button the moment the alarm goes off (assuming you went to bed on time and got the full night’s rest).
19. Create A Consistent Sleep Routine
Your body naturally adjusts to routines and habits. Waking up at the same exact time each and every single day (even days when you can “sleep in”) will prepare your body for that wakeup call each morning. Of course, this is all assuming you head to bed around the same time each night, as well. If eight hours of sleep keeps you in optimum condition, then sleep eight hours each and every single night; head to bed before 10 p.m. and wake at 6 a.m. every single day, even on weekends.
20. Be Active
When you wake up in the morning, go active right away. This involves practice and some getting used to, but in the long run it’ll build effective habits to get you up and ready the moment your alarm clock starts ringing. Ways to go active the moment you wake up is to make your bed and open the windows (in winter, the chilly air can help snap you to your senses). Do crunches or pushups to get your blood flowing before you dress or wash up. By then, you should be alert and ready to start your day.
21. Start Your Morning In Bed
Part of the reason you refuse to get up is because you loose the argument with your mental self regarding purpose. Of course you can sleep one more snooze cycle if there’s no worthy alternative. Here’s a tip to help win those self-arguments: Write an agenda / to-do list for the first hour of your day before you go to sleep. Keep a post it note or pad next to your bed. Before sleeping, write down the 2-3 things you will accomplish the next morning. Now you have an argument to start the day.
22. Z Is The Best Letter In The Alphabet!
Want to get up early? Create deep, restful sleep for yourself in the amount you need, be it nine or ten hours a night! Look at all the articles out there on how to get less sleep and you will realize that our culture devalues sleep. But sleep, deep restful sleep, is vital to our health and productivity and keeps our levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, in check. Put the zzzzs first and you will soon be able to wake up early without an alarm clock! (P.S. No sleeping with your cell either!)
This doesn’t help me technically wake up earlier, but it does help my system start functioning earlier. For the past couple months, I have been doing about ten minutes of every conceivable stretch in the morning before I say goodbye to my PJs or even open my eyes. I think it helps kick-start my metabolism, because I seem to be productive sooner in the morning.
24. Create A New Habit!
Here’s how I became an early riser. What time you wake up is a habit. Habits are driven by rewards. It can be an internal reward, like a sense of accomplishment, or an external reward, such as extra cream in your coffee. I came up with a strong reward that turned into a craving. I then set up a “cue”, the signal to get up (my alarm), and every time I heard it, I imagined the reward for getting up. Last crucial step – I pre-planned for the moment when every fiber of my being wanted to hit snooze.
I’m an early bird when it comes to getting up in the morning. Why? I served over 20 years as a USAF military officer, having retired as a lieutenant colonel from the Pentagon, after 12 consecutive years in the five sided building. My early to rise, early to generate revenue for my business has its roots in what my parents taught me. Prioritizng is essential in life, thus get up early, plan, focus and take action to add value to your client and revenue to your bottom line. No alarm clock needed!
26. Early Motivation
I always plan my most motivating items first thing in the morning. This small action gives me the incentive I need to get cracking while others are taking their time. It gives me great satisfaction to know that while many of my colleagues and competition are rustling in bed I have already gotten part of my to-do list accomplished.
27. It’s All About REWARDS!
The only thing that gets me out of bed early is rewarding myself for doing it. It’s usually simple things like an McD breakfast sandwich or even a nap later in the day. I like to find things that I would normally do, but only allow them IF I get up early. Even things like a soda in the morning can be motivating if I really want that soda. When I want bigger things like a movie night, dinner out, a new iPhone, etc.; I’ll require an entire week of getting up on time.
28. IPod Wake Up Call
I use my iPod alarm and then listen to some kick ass music and occasionally a motivational speaker.
Also, am working on making my own recording for the same purpose. . .