If you’d like to become a morning person, or more of a morning person than you currently are, then this is for you! For all of my fellow night owls, welcome! I feel you! And while I definitely don’t identify as someone who is not a morning person, I definitely identify as a night owl and can easily stay up past my bedtime and fight sleep like a toddler. :) That doesn’t lend itself well to being a morning person, so thankfully, that’s not the norm for me.
You and I both know the importance of sleep, and you can find a ton of resources for better sleep on my blog here, and on my YouTube channel here, and here. But this post is all about becoming a morning person should you choose to do so. You’ll also find a workbook I created to accompany this post to help you orchestrate becoming one.
Before we start, let me be clear on one thing if you’d like to become a morning person. Being a morning person does not require you to rise at 5am. Not at all. In fact, you can use this post as inspiration to create a morning routine, regardless of the time you rise. It will help you enjoy your morning and reap the benefits of becoming a morning person whenever your morning starts. :) But if you do indeed have a goal to rise earlier, I got you. This post will help with that too.
So let’s get to it!
Here are 12 tips to make becoming a morning person easier, and much more enjoyable.
1. Gratitude: According to Mayo Clinic, practicing gratitude promotes hopefulness and energy. It’s easy to do, always feels good, and is a great way to start your day instead of negative thoughts getting the better of you before your feet even hit the floor. You can practice gratitude quietly in your mind, capture them in an app on your phone, or by going old school and writing things you’re grateful for in a notebook or journal. I use this beautiful printed journal currently $10 on Amazon here. However you decide to practice gratitude, is the right answer. There is no right or wrong way. :)
2. Light: It’s no secret our circadian rhythms are responsive to darkness and light. So take advantage of that and expose yourself to light in the morning to help you feel more alert. While the sun does this for us naturally, depending on the time of year, that may be harder to come by. There are plenty of ways to mimic this with the use of a circadian rhythm alarm clock. I have one of these from a store that will certainly show my nearly 50 years of age, Sharper Image. Anyone remember Sharper Image? I loved that store! I bought my first sunrise alarm clock there over 25 years ago and still have it to this day! You can find plenty of these at numerous stores. Here’s a popular one on Amazon if you’d like to check it out.
3. Move: In addition to gratitude, movement in the morning can give you energy as well. And it doesn’t have to be a hardcore gym session. A nice walk, or light activity will do the trick. Yoga is a great option for movement in the morning. Check out these poses from Mayo Clinic to create your own personalized morning yoga flow.
Another fun option is make it a habit to walk your dog, the neighbor’s dog, a shelter dog, any dog. Dogs are THE best walking accountability buddies on the planet! Pay attention to not only the benefits of movement with these walks, but allow the dog to teach you a thing or two about being in the moment as well. They are completely present and happy as a clam to be walking with you. Follow their lead! :)
4. Plants: Studies show enjoying plants for breakfast supports a curious and creative mind. They’re fun to experiment with, and tasty to boot! It’s easy to toss some veggies in with your morning eggs, add fruit to your oatmeal, or use a combination of both in a morning smoothie! If you need some inspiration, check out the TV segment I did here to learn how to create the perfect smoothie! The possibilities are endless!
5. Routine: When I’m helping my clients create the perfect morning routine for them, I also help them create the equally important, if not more, evening routine. If you’d like to become a morning person and are struggling to do so, it may be because you’re not setting yourself up for the best shot at it the night before. There are a lot of habits and routines you can create at night to help you wind down, enjoy your evening, and set you up for success in the morning. Make sure you spend time thinking about and evaluating your evening routine as well.
6. Consistency: Sticking to a schedule for when you go to sleep and when you wake up will be critical if you’d like to become a morning person. Our sleep/wake cycles are vital. I’ve shared my sleep struggle journey publicly, including my sleep study results ordered by my awesome sleep doctor. I remember the first time I saw him for my consultation he stressed the importance of our circadian rhythm. Creating consistency with a sleep/wake cycle is the number one thing to try to experience more wakefulness in the morning to help you become a morning person. If like me, you struggle with sleep and might need help doing this, don’t hesitate reaching out to your physician &/or sleep specialist. They are invaluable helping you create a consistent sleep cycle, especially if there may an underlying medical condition.
7. Enjoyment: One thing you may not think about in the morning is to carve out time in it to do something you enjoy. Mornings can easily become a hectic, unruly experience on repeat, void of anything even remotely pleasurable. But it doesn’t have to be that way. If you’d like to become a morning person, find ways to enjoy your morning. It doesn’t have to be something that takes a lot of time or requires a lot of energy. Anything you know you’re going to do in the morning that you enjoy…..that perfect cup of coffee, being out in nature, 1:1 time with someone special, reading, journaling, whatever it might be. (Know you’ll have to be intentional here until it becomes habit.) Finding something you enjoy and looking forward to it will help you enjoy your mornings and become a morning person!
8. Upsides: To make becoming a morning person a whole lot easier, it helps to look at the bright side of being one. What is it that would make you want to become a morning person in the first place? What are the benefits to enjoying your morning and having it unfold in a predictable, and pleasant way? Will it allow you more time with your family? Increase your productivity? Savor some much needed ‘me’ time? Give you more energy?
Spend some time thinking about and focusing on all of the upsides to being a morning person. When it comes to changing your behavior, you have to create something compelling enough for you to want to change. What is that for you?
9. Alarm: This is an easy one, and tried and true if you’re a lover of your snooze button. Simply place your alarm on the opposite side of the room so you’re forced to get up and out of bed to shut it off. Or there are numerous popular apps you can use on your phone (if that’s your alarm) that will require some type of mental energy before it will shut off. Experiment with different apps, or different placements of your alarm until you find what works for you to avoid your snooze button!
10. Gradual Shift: If you’d like to become a morning person, and you’re currently going to bed and getting up later than you’d like, use the workbook I designed for you to create a process and plan to gradually shift your sleep/wake time slowly until you’re going to bed and getting up at the times you’d like. It’s recommended to do this in small increments of 15 minutes. When you allow your body to become accustom to this gradually, it’s so much easier than you think!
11. Environment: Our environment plays such a huge role on our habits. Our habits play a huge role in becoming a morning person. If you’d like to become a morning person, look around. What in your environment is making it more difficult? What could you do to make it easier? My favorite scientist at Stanford is an expert in this area. Check out his book here. In it, you’ll learn a ton of ways to make becoming a morning person easier by engineering your environment to work in your favor.
12: Identity: When it comes to behavior change, you know I stress the link to it with identity. Start now identifying yourself as someone who IS a morning person. Stop saying you’re not. Every choice you make creates an opportunity for you to become the person you’d like to be. In this case, a morning person. If it feels false to claim you’re a morning person right now at this very moment, that’s fair. In that case, I recommend using the power of the word, yet. Add that word to the end of your declaration if you find yourself saying you’re not a morning person. So it would be…I’m not a morning person, yet. That’s a very different and much more powerful declaration.
Another favorite scientist of mine talks about the importance of the word yet when it comes to how we view ourselves, and what we’re capable of. Especially when it comes to something we haven’t mastered….yet. You can learn more about her here.
13. Bonus Tip: Make your bed! For years and years I have talked about this. When you make your bed first thing in the morning, you’re starting your day out already feeling accomplished, and that has a ripple effect in your whole day. Check out my blog post here for more information, including the world famous commencement address about this very topic from Naval Admiral William McRaven. You can check out his book of the same title on Amazon here.
So there you have it! Thirteen tips to make becoming a morning person easier, and much more enjoyable.
Download the workbook I created for you here if you’d like to flush out some of these tips further.
Morning Routine Strategy Session
A popular area in my coaching practice, is the morning routine I help my clients create. I remember how powerful it was for me when I created a personalized morning routine that allowed me to operate at my best by starting my day in such an amazing way. There is power in planning. Along with clarity, direction, and flow.
If you’d like to get a handle on your mornings and create a personalized morning routine to experience more joy, have more energy, be more productive, and a whole host of other positive benefits, book at Morning Routine Strategy Session with me! I’d love to help!
I hope you find these resources helpful. I’m excited for you to enjoy all of the benefits that come with being a morning person.
It’s time my friend. STEP INTO YOUR MOMENT, and take action!