When your alarm goes off in the morning, are you a SNOOZER or do you SPRING out of bed?
New research has been released which will make my friends (hopefully) stop making fun of me. My whole life, I have been an early bird. Doesn’t the early bird get the worm? I wake early (5:45 a.m.), I eat lunch early (11:30 a.m.), dinner early (5:30 p.m.), and I go to bed early (9:45 p.m.), pretty much all the time. Don’t pity me; I’m a fun gal when I go out!
But as research has it, I am doing what it takes to be successful.
It appears this lifestyle might be contributing to my health, wellbeing and happiness. According to this new research, early risers aren’t just nicer to be around in the morning, they’re also happier, healthier, more self-satisfied, and even experience more career success than the rest of the population.
While the world sleeps, getting more done in the morning is a beautiful thing, and I am living proof. Waking up early actually decreases my stress level and anxiety for the day. It allows me to start my day in a much slower, more steady pace. It allows me to enjoy the moments more. When I wake early, I catch up on emails, grab a coffee, read the paper – it’s quiet, I have time to myself, and it literally feels like a gift. I encourage you to try it.While most people are snoozing or still sleeping, research says that success has much to do with being a morning person. I know, shocking right?! (Actually, I’m not shocked. As a Women’s Success Coach, I already know this). The latest studies indicate that the tasks that require self-discipline, such as working out, getting through annoying paperwork, returning emails, or crossing things off your to-do list, are simply better done in the morning. Morning people are said to be more optimistic too.
The pioneer in this field of research is Laura Vanderkam, author of the book, What The Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast.
“Mornings are a great time to get things done. This is golden time for yourself. Yes, there are some people who may be confirmed night owls, but everyone else, with a little bit of work, can become a morning person. And studies show, morning people are more successful people.” Laura Vanderkam.
3 tips to make yourself a morning person:
- Program yourself to go to bed earlier at night. Skip Jimmy Fallon and opt for DVRing instead. Power down all your electronics early. Pretty simple and you’ll wake up less tired, and get more done.
- Waking up early should not be punishment, therefore to give yourself an incentive, do something you love. Get out of bed early and read a book, the newspaper, sit on your porch and sip a coffee, play with your kids. Do something YOU ENJOY DOING. That will give you greater incentive to wake up earlier, and start your day off on a more positive note. This is your time to do things you want to do, not things you have to do – do something that gives you pleasure. “The best morning activities aren’t things you have to do, but things that you want to do but just never seem to get around to,” says Laura Vanderkam.
- Start gradually. Experts say that to become a morning person, therefore increasing your chances of becoming a more successful person, start slow. Don’t expect to set your alarm for 5 a.m. tomorrow morning (instead of the usual 7 a.m.) and wake up smiling like Mary Poppins! Go slowly and gradually. Start by going to bed 15 minutes earlier, and waking up 15 minutes earlier until a pattern develops. Also, planning ahead allows greater ease to do more in the a.m. For example, by literally laying out your workout clothes by your bedside so they are easily accessible in the morning is a big help. “And then it’s just a matter of habit building. Creating habits can take enormous willpower and energy, but maintaining habits actually conserves it,” says Laura Vanderkam.
It ain’t easy, but who said anything worth having is?
I have subscribed to this lifestyle for over 20 years now, and I can tell you, it works.