We can guess that most of you aren’t morning people and if you are, please tell us your secrets. We know there’s that saying that the “early bird gets the worm” but what’s the big deal about that worm?
Lately, all of us here at #teamteri have been waking up earlier than we ever have. We are full of regret when that alarm goes off at the horrid life decision we made the night before. But, from all of us who are not morning people, there’s something actually magical about getting up at the crack of dawn. You get to see the sunrise, you have time for yourself before the hustle of the day starts, and that feeling of forever rushing diminishes just a little bit.
Here are 5 easy hacks for better mornings.
Try to Get Decent Sleep the Night Before
This one is ridiculously obvious but we live in a world where we can’t turn off our phones before we go to sleep. Staying on your electronics keeps your brain buzzing and then you end up with late night anxiety worrying about things that might happen the next morning. Turn off your electronics 30 minutes before going to bed so you can actually try to get some decent sleep. If you need your phone glued to your face before bed, then figure out what you can absorb that's extremely mindless to help you drift off to sleep (search YouTube for "ASMR" videos to get started).
Don’t Open Email Until Noon
This one is a favorite because there’s nothing more jarring than opening email the moment you crack open your eyes. Unless you are waiting for an email from Josh Groban, it all can wait. Your heart rate and anxiety can shoot through the roof before your feet have even touched the floor because suddenly you feel frantic in trying to get things done. Take care of yourself and the immediate living things around you first before you address all 125 emails. Or if 12pm seems unrealistic, try going for the first hour of your day without email, then gradually push that time back. Teri is even trying a little once-per-day email checking experiment right now and her world hasn't fallen apart (yet!).
Ignore Social Media
Another habit to break is checking social media before you roll out of bed. As with email, try to spend the first hour (or as long as possible) off of social media as well. Scrolling newsfeeds can be an easy time-suck, and the fear mongering news media on our feeds only add to the morning anxiety.
Organize the Night Before
This is seriously such basic advice but we often forget. The night before lay out your clothes, your kids clothes, and mentally determine (if you haven’t already physically already prepared meals) what you’re going to make for breakfast. Write your to-do list the night before so you have a predetermined path for the day versus randomly adding tasks on as you go. Mornings with or without kids are always crazy trying to rush out the door. Prepare what you can the night before so you can be on auto-pilot while getting dressed and feeding everyone.
Avoid Hitting the Snooze Button
This is a hard one. You want to kill your alarm clock every morning already, don’t you? Aside from the obligatory reasons of getting up every morning for work and taking care of children, find something that makes you want to get up even earlier. Be it a jog, gym class, reading, writing, coffee date, or that special morning walk with your puppy. This is your special time all to yourself, so force yourself to get up and you’ll be so much happier when you do. If you have trouble finding time to squeeze in a hobby, doing your hobby for 15 minutes in the morning will make you feel much more in balance.
Extra credit if you're still having trouble with your mornings:
If you have trouble getting out of bed because you simply feel uninspired (such as if you have thoughts like "Why even get out of bed when there's always problems to deal with" or "Why get out of bed when I hate my job?" or "Why wake up this early when I dread my own existence right now" etc etc), then we really feel for you on this. The best thing that we've has personally found to get inspired is to use Pinterest to our advantage.
Create a secret board on Pinterest called "Living the Dream" or another title that inspires you. Then whenever you're on Pinterest and any random pin catches your eye as something you want to aspire to in the future, pin it to your secret board. Pin things like trips you want to take in the future, new furniture for your house, outfits you want to buy, makeup looks to try, haircut inspiration, or anything else that catches your eye. This is called "life designing" where you are getting vision and inspiration to designing your dream life. When you scroll through this secret board early in the mornings (we even do this before getting out of bed), your subconscious will start to think of ways to achieve what you see in your board, and you'll feel inspired to take action even if it just means getting out of bed.
If you deal with morning anxiety, try EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique). Always consult your doctor before trying any self-therapy, however EFT has saved Teri's sanity lately. This is also known as "tapping" where you tap on pressure points on your face and arms which releases natural dopamine (the feel-good hormone) and lowers cortisol (the stress hormone). EFT is based on acupuncture and acupressure, so if those two ancient Eastern techniques work well for you, then EFT might work as well. Search YouTuber Brad Yates to see hundreds of short EFT videos on various topics. He has a video called "Amazing Day" and "Not a Morning Person" which particularly help us in the morning.
Mornings don’t have to be evil. A habit takes about 21 days to form, so if you can stick it out for a few weeks, you might actually become the happiest morning person on the block. Those sunrises are magical and that time alone to yourself is really priceless. You might find that waking up at 5:15am everyday makes you happier and healthier all at once. Have fun and good luck!