Updated: 1 April 2021
For most of my life, I have not been a morning person. I sleep late and I wake up late. Opposite to what my Dad says; early to bed, early to rise, makes you healthy, wealthy and wise.
However, despite many attempts and strategies, I have failed in transforming myself to a morning person.
As an adult, I spend most of my day working, managing family commitments/responsibilities and sleeping. Leaving precious time for things I want to do and/or for “me time”. I figured instead of late nights, I would dedicate early mornings to myself because I am refreshed and have the energy to do what I want to do.
How am I waking up consistently at 5am daily?
For the first time in my life, I am consistently waking up at 5am. It’s not daily, but it’s almost daily.
My current system to track my progress is dead simple and oddly satisfying to check each box.
I also use an app, Alarmy. This is no ordinary alarm clock. It forces you to move. For me, to turn off the alarm, I have to scan a barcode which is located 6 metres away from my bedroom. After scanning the barcode, I splash cold water on my face. This is enough to fully wake me up.
I set specific rules:
- Wake up at 5am. If it’s 5 minutes past 5am, that does not count.
- Sick/unwell days are excluded - tracked with a green cross
- Vaccation days are excluded - tracked with a green cross
- Allow up to 3 cheat days in any 30 day period
Rule 2 is important because I am aspiring for consistency rather than perfection. For days that I couldn’t wake up at 5am, I note down the reasons.
The night prior, I decide what I will do in the morning. To avoid decision fatigue, I made a list of what I wanted to do and just select from:
- Exercise: running🏃♂️, bike 🚴, yoga 🧘, Apple fitness plus
- Writing ✍️ : MereCivilian.com
- Journaling 📓 : Day One
- Reading: prefer non-fiction
- Meditating 🧘♂️
Believe me, it motivates you if you know exactly WHY you are waking up early. I clearly wrote the benefits (me time, healthier me, better writer etc) and also the downsides (less time for movies or mindless late night Twitter scrolling). SometimesI wake up early to play video games or watch an episode of my favourite tv show. This also comes under “me time”.
Mornings are peaceful because the entire world is sleeping. This helps with my meditation and journaling. Identifying positives such as this one motivated me and this changed my attitude. These days, I look forward to early mornings.
I made peace with myself that I cannot do both (late nights and early mornings). Sleeping less is a recipe for disaster and is unsustainable in the long term. Six to seven hours of sleep is adequate for me.
I am quietly confident that this time around; I am progressing towards becoming a morning person. This ultimately is my goal. I will consider this goal complete when people close to me identify me as a morning person. Fingers crossed, by end of 2021, I accomplish this goal.
A conversation is a food and drink for the soul. If this article has sparked some ideas, or you want to discuss it, please email me at [email protected] or contact me on Twitter @MereCivilian. Please share this article with people whom you think may also find it useful ✌️.