8 Reasons To Wake Up Early In The Morning

Just five more minutes to snooze, and I will feel refreshed and ready for the day. Who needs that long, hot shower anyway… Here’s why waking up earlier is actually a good thing.

We’ve all been there. Until recently, this scene played on repeat most mornings in my life. After too many rushed and harried efforts to get out of bed, I decided that something had to change. I had to give myself reasons to get out of bed earlier. Once I started looking for these reasons, it turned out that there were plenty.

1. Stretch in bed

woman stretching in bed

Waking up 5 to 10 minutes earlier (or not pressing the snooze button four or five times) allows for that first opportunity to treat your body like the loving and strong vessel that it is.

Your body carries you through each day, and all it asks for is a good night’s rest and a calm, but energizing way to wake up (ok, and food and water, but you get the idea).

You don’t even have to open your eyes yet! The minute your body feels that ray of warmth from the sunshine peeking through the curtains, roll onto your back, throw the pillow across the room so that you are lying flat, raise your arms above your head, point your toes to the edge of the bed and give your spine a delicious opening stretch.

Then, keep your spine reclined on the bed and bring your knees into your chest, waking up the hips. Wrap your arms around your knees and give yourself a satisfying squeeze. Think of it as your very own wake-up cuddle (because everyone likes to cuddle), and don’t forget to think to your body, “Good morning! Let’s do this thing.”

2. Sip that huge cup of coffee nice and slowly

It can also be breakfast tea or hot water with lemon—whatever floats your boat. There might not be any other moment of the day to allow your body and mind to take its time and enjoy the subtleties of sipping a liquid meant to bring you energy and clarity as you slowly recall that dream you just awoke from (or continue in an all-day daydream).

3. Enjoy the quiet

woman drinking coffee

Silence is something I used to be afraid of. I used to roll over the minute my alarm sounded to switch to music—and it wasn’t relaxing music, either; I went straight for the dance music most mornings. Not to say that dancing my way out of bed wasn’t fun (and still can be), but I have a new routine now.

I start with quiet meditation. I give space for my thoughts. I don’t run away from these thoughts. I sit quietly with my eyes closed, and survey my emotions in order to be able to know how I’m feeling. This allows me to know how I need to treat myself that day.

Do I need more patience due to this agitated feeling? Do I need more excitement due to this lethargy I awoke with? Do I need more social interaction due to waking up with a feeling of loneliness? Or, did I wake up feeling calm, hopeful or content?

If so, I take a few moments to soak in those positive feelings to energize me for the day. If you choose to try this, remember, most importantly, to do your best not to judge your thoughts. They are what they are. Accept them with open arms and an open mind.

If the dead silence truly gives you the creeps, there is another option. Though this free sound app is intended for sleep assistance, I use it instead as an occasional soundtrack for my meditative mornings.

The sound of a crackling fire helps me to feel warmth in the dark, winter mornings, and the gentle rhythm of the ocean waves allows me to imagine I’m on vacation, floating in the water. Whatever method you choose, let the quiet allow you to listen to what your mind is telling you it needs for the day.

4. Read or do whatever you enjoy doing to relax

Every night, I crawl into bed with my latest book that I have been dying to read, and then promptly fall asleep. Sometimes our days can be so full of activity that, by the end of it, we have no energy left for our own pleasures. I’ve found a way to beat the system. Now, I begin my day with my own enjoyment.

I’ve found that reading inspirational books or just plain fun articles in the mornings helps me to begin the day on a relaxing and positive note, setting the tone for the rest of my day.

Your pleasurable activity might be watching funny videos on YouTube, practicing some morning yoga or even cooking a gourmet breakfast. Give yourself the opportunity to start your day with whatever brings you joy.

5. Contemplate your goals

woman writing in a notebook

I admit it. I’m someone who makes a to-do list, then loses the list and forgets to check off the completed items. However, just the act of writing goals down usually sears them into my brain, and I’ve found that doing this on a daily basis is a lifesaver. Naturally, making a list of goals is most useful first thing in the morning (or just after coffee, because let’s be honest, some of us are pre-coffee zombies).

Choose your method. For a quick and easy fix, keep a small notebook and make a daily to-do list. For a more in-depth planning session, find graphic organizers to help you organize your whole week or hour-by-hour day. I found this organizing option a year ago and, of course, the crazy, messy free spirit in me snickered at how overly organized some people can be, but the list-maker in me still craved some order in my overly busy life. I tried it, and became addicted.

Once I made time for the daily (ok, sometimes weekly) planning options, I found myself happily surprised at the calm focus it brought me every morning. For the even more orderly of us, bullet journaling is all the rage on Pinterest lately. I haven’t gone this route yet, but feel free to drool over the beautifully color-coded lists that some people are capable of.

Sometimes the daily or weekly list-making may seem like overkill, so instead, spend some time quietly contemplating more long-term goals. Ask yourself if what you are accomplishing on a daily basis is helping you reach the place you want to be (or better yet, person you want to be) in six months or one year? How’s that for an early morning reflective daydreaming session?

6. Have some alone time

Depending on your lifestyle, you may spend much of your day surrounded by other people whether it be family members, roommates, colleagues or even best buddies.

Or, if you’re a teacher like me, you’re surrounded by adorably hyper-active and wonderfully curious middle school students most days. No matter how much we love these people, we can’t doubt that giving our attention to others can sometimes drain our own energy (yes, even for extroverts!).

Sometimes we just need to be alone. And no, alone does not equal lonely! Alone means free, even for a short moment, to give your full and undivided attention to you!

It goes without saying that waking up early can often give us this liberating alone time. Whether it be in the privacy of your own home, taking an early morning walk or sitting quietly (alone) in a chill coffee shop, make sure to recharge yourself by spending some time with just yourself.

7. Enjoy a less crowded commute

woman walking and smiling

Less people = less stress = more relaxation = a sigh of relief. The last thing we need on the way to the work in the morning is an obstacle course of bustling crowds, packed public transport or unnecessary traffic jams.

Let your morning walk be a lovely stroll down a still sleeping boulevard, take the early bus so that you can grab a seat and read your book (or go back to sleep) or zoom down that open highway (following that speed limit of course) while blasting your favorite song. You will arrive to work refreshed, realizing that your required commute has become an enjoyable activity in itself.

8. Take your time

It all comes down to this one. Give yourself more time for whatever it is that helps to start your day with the right mindset. More time for your body (exercise), for your mind (meditation), for your soul (alone time), more time to notice and enjoy life. The rush and panic of a late-start morning is just something I have finally learned to toss out of my life and replace with a bit of peace.

So, crawl into bed tonight (at a reasonable hour) and set back that alarm clock. Be practical though. Be nice to your body by taking baby steps—maybe just 15 or 20 minutes earlier than your normal time. Choose your motivation to wake up earlier and fall asleep with that peace of mind. You deserve it.

About the author

Lindsay Peak

Third Culture Kid. International Teacher. Wellness & Yoga Instructor. Constantly gathering reflections on life, exploring the globe’s hidden corners, and searching for the world’s best cup of coffee along the way.

Add Comment

Click here to post a comment