The early bird gets the worm. You’ve probably heard this proverb many times. Why? Because it’s really valuable to get an early start on your day.
I’ve personally found it to be really beneficial to wake up early…before my kids get up and the house gets loud…to do my morning routine. There’s something special about waking up before your alarm clock (on purpose) to invest in yourself.
Sound crazy? Let me try to convince you…
Here are 7 reasons, in my opinion, why you should consider getting a jump start on your day:
1. Less Distractions Let You Focus On Yourself
When you get up earlier, you can focus on yourself because there are usually fewer distractions. Look at the first hour of your day as “me time”. Ask yourself, what do you want to do during this hour? Rising early can help you create a routine of investing in yourself.
2. Sets The Tone For The Entire Day
Let’s think about 2 scenarios here…you can wake up early and kick butt for the day. Or, you can wake up last minute, hit snooze a couple of times, and send signals to your mind that you’re not interested in the day. Instead of jumping out of bed and telling yourself that you are ready to seize the day, you procrastinate and damper your mindset. This is not a good early morning message to send to yourself.
3. Your Willpower and Creativity Are Higher in The Morning
Your willpower and creativity are highest in the morning. When you wake up early, you can use that window of opportunity to work on key projects and goals. If you work on these projects for a few minutes every day, think of the compound effect it will have over time. All of those small investments will add up to something bigger.
Studies have shown that your willpower declines over the course of the day because you suffer from decision fatigue. Just like working out a muscle, your ability to make decisions get tired. It’s important to harness your willpower first thing in the morning.
Here are a few ways to use your creativity and willpower in the morning include:
- Make healthy eating and diet decisions. Personally, I do intermittent fasting first thing in the morning and start my day with a healthy salad at lunch.
- Do one thing to advance your business or meet your goals.
- Resolve a conflict or create a solution to a problem. Sometimes, I’m just spinning my wheels late at night over the best route to take on a business issue. But, when I get up first thing the next morning…I can usually figure it out right away.
- Invest in yourself. The investment in yourself is the best investment you can make.
4. Helps You Stay Consistent With Your Morning Routine
I didn’t always get up early or have a morning routine. Actually, I used to be the kind of person that jumped out of bed at the last minute. But, when I learned about routines and the impact they can have, I started getting up early to spend time investing in myself.
Getting up before you need to be out the door will open up the window of time necessary to develop a consistent routine.
5. Creates an Identity Shift
If you’re the type of person that gets up early every day, then you tell your brain you’re ready for the day. Over time, I believe it creates an identity shift. Instead of being that person that delays getting the day going, you become the person that can’t wait to get started.
In the middle of the pandemic, I stopped doing my routine and getting up early. Like most of the world, I was in a funk. Stopping my routine accelerated the funk. Just like I had changed my identity to be someone that was ready to face the day…I just as quickly changed my identity in the other direction.
Fortunately, I recognized the self-sabotage and took action!
6. Good Time to Exercise
A great time to exercise is in the early morning. For one thing, you get it out of the way while you’re still fresh and not exhausted. Also, you do it before you start facing decision fatigue.
As part of my routine, I do 5 minutes of movement. The goal is to get my blood flowing first thing. I also find 30 minutes most days to get my heart rate up via cardio and calisthenics.
7. Health Benefits
There are some benefits to getting up early, according to several studies. For example, one study showed that children that get up earlier tend to be more active. While the study was geared toward children, my assumption is this translates to adults as well.
Another study showed that students that tend to be morning people will score better on tests and have a higher GPA than night owls. One theory is that the person who gets up earlier usually goes to bed earlier. In the case of college students, this means less drinking and partying or other activities that keep them from being good students and more behavior that encourages them to fall asleep at a sufficient time.
And…according to this study, morning people tend to be happier than those that like to stay up late.
Even if you are not naturally a morning person, don’t be discouraged because you can change your habits and get up early.
How Early Should You Get Up?
Getting up earlier is going to look different for everyone. I suggest you start by getting up one hour before you normally get up. This will help get your routine going and to take advantage of the extra hour. If one hour is too much, start with 30 minutes and work up to one hour.
I usually set my alarm clock to around 6 am since my girls get up at 7 am. It’s a good routine to get up at about the same time daily. That said, I’m not militant about this because life and business happen. Sometimes I get in a slump and don’t feel like getting up early…but I recognize the cycle, work through it and get back on track quickly. I don’t have to be an early riser every day, but I can see the benefits.
What’s most important is that you get up earlier than you need to and spend the initial part of your day investing in yourself. But don’t sacrifice your sleep…if you’re going to get up earlier, make sure you put yourself in a good enough position to fall asleep earlier.
To sum things up…keep trying to get up early and put those habits of investing in yourself into practice. You’ll thank yourself!
- Getting up early helps you focus better.
- You can get more done if you get up early.
- Develop and stick with a morning routine.
- Back your bedtime up to get enough sleep.
- Do the best you can to get up early, but don’t aim for perfection.