If you want to know how to become a morning person, this post is for you!
For the first 30+ years of my life, I was definitely a night owl. I always had a later bedtime than my friends, and I don’t think my parents ever struggled with me waking up super early like my daughter does. I spent my teen years glued to my phone until all hours of the night, and even in my first sleep deprived years of motherhood, I often found myself staying up much later than I intended to so I could grab some much-needed time to myself.
I’m not sure I’ll ever be the kind of person who crawls into bed at 9 pm, but in the last couple of years I’ve managed to ditch my late night social media scrolling habit so I can get up for a 6 am workout. It took a lot of discipline to get into the habit of waking up before the sun, but I’ve come to look forward to having an hour to myself each morning to enjoy my coffee and get in a good sweat sesh before the insanity of breakfast, school drop-off, and my work-from-home schedule begin.
The tips below all helped me learn how to become a morning person – and I hope they help you too!
How to Become a Morning Person
1. Get up at the same time each day
If you want to know how to become a morning person, the first thing you need to wrap your head around is the need to be CONSISTENT with your sleep-wake cycle. As tempting as it is to stay up late and sleep until noon on the weekends, maintaining proper sleep hygiene will get your body into the habit of waking up earlier. It will also ensure you are getting ample sleep every single night so that you are well-rested and full of energy when your alarm clock goes of.
Of course, you still need to live your life and there will be days when a good sleep in is exactly what your body needs. But as a general rule, you should try to go to bed and wake up at the same time each day to help reset your internal clock.
2. Don’t force an earlier bedtime
When I first made the decision to learn how to become a morning person, one of the things I really struggled with was the idea of going to bed super early. While I love to sleep, I also like having time to unwind and spend time with my husband after our daughter goes to bed each night, so a 9 pm bedtime simply isn’t a realistic goal for me. With that said, once I consistently started waking up at 6 am, my body naturally started to feel tired earlier in the evening.
If you’re a night owl trying to train yourself to become a morning person, my biggest advice is to focus more on the time you wake up. As you get into a groove, your mind and body will start to crave an earlier bedtime. Just be sure to listen to your internal cues!
3. Sleep with the curtains open
Did you know that exposure to natural sources of light within an hour of waking up can help suppress melatonin production, increase cortisol production, and release serotonin, leaving you feeling energized and ready to take on whatever the day throws at you? A healthy dose of morning sunlight can also help ward off insomnia by re-setting your circadian rhythm. If you want to know how to become a morning person, consider sleeping with the curtains open.
If you sleep in a room without a window, or simply cannot stomach the idea of waking up to a bright room, there are other things you can do. Go for a walk around your neighborhood when you wake up, eat your breakfast on your back deck, or invest in a light therapy lamp.
4. Ditch the snooze button
I used to press snooze an average of 7 times a morning. SEVEN TIMES! It drove my husband bananas, but I was convinced I couldn’t function without those additional bursts of sleep, and did it for years. It wasn’t until I started researching tips that would help me learn how to become a morning person that I realized I needed to ditch the snooze button once and for all.
While pressing snooze may sound luxurious when you feel too tired to get out of bed, it can actually make you feel more exhausted. After you’re jolted awake by your alarm clock, the act of pressing the snooze button tells your brain to go back to sleep, only to be jolted awake again a few minutes later. Keep in mind that you tend to fall into a deep sleep after pressing snooze, so the sleep-wake-sleep cycle can actually cause you to feel groggy and lethargic instead of awake and refreshed. A much better option is to set your alarm for the time you actually need to get up, allowing your body to benefit from uninterrupted, quality sleep.
5. Get creative with your alarm clock
It’s harder to wake up in the morning if your alarm is annoying or bland. Set your alarm to go off to something fun and upbeat, so you’ll actually want to wake up to it. Another no-fail alarm tip: place your alarm out of reach so you actually have to get up out of bed to turn it off!
You can also experiment with different types of alarm clocks. For example, a sunrise alarm clock mimics the sunrise by gradually increasing the amount of light it shines before your preset wakeup time so that your room is filled with bight, yellow light once your alarm goes off.
6. Give Mel Robbin’s ‘5 Second Rule’ a try
Do you follow Mel Robbins on Instagram? If you don’t, you should. She shares all kinds of inspiring thoughts and ideas, and if you want to know how to become a morning person, her 5 Second Rule will change your life. I suggest you read the science behind The 5 Second Rule, but the Coles Notes version is that once you have an impulse to act on a goal (getting out of bed as soon as your alarm goes off), you have to act within 5 seconds or your brain will talk you out of it. You can use this rule for so many other goals you’ve set for yourself – it is such a powerful too!
7. Do one thing you love when you wake up
Another helpful tip you can try if you want to know how to become a morning person is to do something you love when you wake up. This could be snuggling with your kids, Face-timing with your BFF, practicing yoga, going for a run, listening to a podcast, or reading a good book. The point is to find something you’re passionate about, to schedule it into your morning routine, and to protect that time like a newborn child. Having something to look forward to each morning will motivate you to get out of bed and help start your day on a positive note, making you more likely to repeat the habit moving forward.
8. Make morning workouts your ‘thing’
Morning workouts boost your mood and mental state and get you ready to conquer the day, leaving you feeling more energized, alert, and productive. I like to workout as soon as I get out of bed in the morning as I find that when I push it off until the afternoon or early evening, I inevitably find an excuse not to do it. Engaging in 30+ minutes of exercise on the daily helps boost our mood, and also helps us sleep better at night.
If you’d like to switch to a morning exercise routine but can’t make it to a gym that early in the morning, there are tons of great workouts you can stream for free on YouTube, allowing you to sweat in the comfort of your own home. CLICK HERE for our favorite morning workouts to kickstart your day!
9. Keep a mood journal
If you’re on a mission to figure how to become a morning person and feel yourself losing momentum, spend some time assessing how you feel throughout the day. Are your mornings less hectic and stressful? Do you feel more alert throughout the day? Are you sleeping better? It can be difficult to notice the positive impacts new habits have on our lives, so it’s important to check in with your mind and body. If you regularly remind yourself of all of the positive gains your new morning routine has had on your life, you will be more likely to stick with it.
10. Adjust your eating schedule
If you’re switching up the time you wake up and go to bed each day, you may need to alter your eating schedule to ensure your food intake isn’t interfering with your ability to fall (and stay) asleep. If you have a tendency to eat your meals later in the day, you may want to adjust your timing so you aren’t going to bed on a full stomach. Just be sure not to eat too early, as hunger can also interfere with the quality of your sleep.
11. Be patient
Change is never linear, and it can sometimes feel as though each time you take 2 steps forward, you end up taking one step back. And that’s okay! Life is messy and complicated, and has a way of getting in the way of the goals we set for ourselves. But instead of letting those blips completely derail you, remember that lasting change isn’t about perfection. It’s about consistency. Instead of throwing in the towel when life gets busy and you find yourself falling off track with your goal of becoming a morning person, remind yourself that tomorrow is a chance to start again.
If you want to know how to become a morning person, I hope the tips and ideas in this post are as useful to you as they have been to me!