If you’re having a hard time getting up in the mornings, reconsider what you do before heading off to bed.
Remember when you were a kid with a structured nighttime regimen that your parents made you do?
At a certain time, you would get in your PJ’s, brush your teeth, read a story, and do the whole drill. And as much as you would fight it, it allowed you to wake up every morning with enough rest to get you through the next day (usually). There’s a reason parents create so much structure and consistency around bedtime – it’s because it truly works!
Yet, most adults today have no routine at all.
This can be especially difficult for those who want to get more out of their days and wake up earlier in the mornings. However, shifting your daily routine requires some thought and effort. That’s why it’s time to bring back the nighttime routine with these few tips and tricks:
1. Set a “Go to Bed” Alarm.
Start by identifying what time you have to wake up in the morning. Then count 9 hours back. This builds in a 1 hour cushion to “unwind”, plus 8 full hours to sleep. Pro tip: When the “Go to Bed” alarm goes off, it’s also your cue for digital downtime.
2. Prep for the Morning.
Do as much ahead of time as possible, so that very little action or decision-making needs to take place in the morning. If working out is what you look forward to in the mornings, lay out your workout clothes and pack a gym bag the night before. Eliminate as many morning time barriers as possible by removing any excuses from the equation.
3. Set Some Bait.
Plant something special to lure you out of bed in the morning! What will you look forward to? Perhaps you set the coffee on a timer so that you can literally “wake up and smell the coffee.” Prepare a bowl of overnight oats so that it’s waiting for your in the fridge. Hang a cozy robe just out of arm’s reach to pull you out of bed.
4. Keep Calm.
Do something relaxing for yourself. Take a bath or shower, light some candles, change into some cozy PJ’s, dim the lights, sip on chamomile tea, mist lavender essential oil over your pillowcase, read a book, write in a journal, listen to a podcast or audiobook, practice yoga, meditate, or stretch. Find what works for you and spoil yourself rotten. Soon enough, your nighttime routine will start to feel like the most luxurious time of the day!
5. Try a Sleep App.
The Sleep cycle alarm clock tracks your sleep patterns so that the alarm goes off while you are in a light sleep. It can truly make a huge difference — no more deep sleep wake up calls that leave you feeling groggy and grumpy!
6. Wake up on a “Positive Note”.
Set your alarm “name” to display a positive affirmation or personal mantra. Make it simple, positive, and meaningful: “Today is the day”, “Do Work”, “Positive Vibes”, “Attitude is Everything”, “Hard Work Pays off”, “Act the way you want to feel”, “Happiness is a Choice”, “Get those endorphins” “Just do it” (thanks Nike), or my personal favorite: “In 10 minutes I’ll be happy I decided to get out of bed”.
Sleep tight tonight!
Adapted from the original article.
Lindsey Kane, MS, RD, LDN is a San Francisco-based Registered Dietitian helping others live a stress-free, balanced, and thriving life. By getting to know her clients inside and out, Lindsey identifies the opportunities within their everyday lifestyle to integrate subtle changes that create lasting, impactful results. Learn more at Bite For Change!