Becoming a morning person can seem like an impossible feat, especially if you’re a night owl by nature. However, the benefits of waking up early are well-documented. By giving yourself extra time in the morning, you can accomplish more, be more productive, and even improve your physical and mental health. In this article, we will share evidence-based techniques, some of which are used by NASA, to help you become a morning person.
Step 1: Figure Out Your Circadian Rhythm
Your circadian rhythm is your body’s internal regulator of your wake and sleep cycle. It has effects at the cellular level and influences behaviors and physiology within your body. To get into a better circadian rhythm, you need to optimize your environment and physical activity.
To figure out your chronotype, or your preference to wake early or wake late, take the morningness/eveningness questionnaire. This online questionnaire will guide you to identify whether you’re a morning or nighttime person, and will help you tailor your plan for becoming a morning person.
Step 2: Shift Your Wake Time
When you try to shift your wake time, it’s best to do it gradually. According to several studies, a shift of an hour or more per day can have deleterious effects on your behavior, mood, and focus. The most well-tolerated way to do this is by shifting your wake time by about 15 minutes per day.
To do this effectively, use the Sleep Cycle app. Sleep Cycle is an application that tracks your sleep and wakes you up during the lightest stage of sleep. When you wake up during this stage, you’ll feel more refreshed and energized.
Step 3: Make Things Easier
Making things easier is the final step to becoming a morning person. This includes creating an environment that promotes better sleep, like making sure your bedroom is quiet, dark, and cool. You can also try some relaxation techniques, like reading a book or taking a warm bath, before going to bed.
In addition, it’s important to establish a consistent sleep schedule. Your body thrives on routine, and establishing a consistent wake time can help you improve your sleep quality.
Other things you can do to make your mornings easier include:
- Planning your outfit and breakfast the night before
- Waking up to natural light by opening your curtains or investing in a sunrise alarm clock
- Exercising in the morning to increase alertness and energy levels
By following these steps, you can become a morning person and reap the benefits of extra time in the morning. Start by figuring out your chronotype and using the Sleep Cycle app to gradually shift your wake time. Finally, create an environment that promotes better sleep and establish a consistent sleep schedule. With some persistence and discipline, you can be well on your way to a healthier, more productive, and happier life.