When the alarm clock first wakes you each morning, do you have difficulty getting out of bed immediately? Do you usually find yourself pressing the snooze button, rolling over, and going back to sleep? Well, you’re not alone. Most people do this.
But imagine if you could get up every morning right when the alarm went off. You’d have an extra ten or twenty minutes in every day, or maybe more. How would you like to hear your alarm, turn it off, take a nice deep breath, and then get right out of bed? Believe it or not, this really can be you!
Unfortunately, most of us have tried to do this before using our conscious will power. You already know what happens. At 10:30 P.M. you decide that you should get up at 5:30 A.M. Then 5:30 A.M. comes along, and you make an executive decision that it would be wiser to get up at 7:30 A.M. instead. This happens to the best of us, and most of us give up afterward.
A Wiser Decision
You may be thinking, “I just need more discipline.” Perhaps, but you don’t need it at 5:30 A.M. You don’t need an elaborate system of alarm clocks. And you don’t need better or more self-talk in the wee hours of the morning. No one can be trusted to make a good decision when the alarm first wakes us up.
What you really need is more discipline before you go to bed. You need to have the discipline at night to recognize that your decision-making process can’t be trusted at that critical moment in the morning. Your 5:30 A.M. brain is no good for decision-making. Take it out of the equation as much as possible.
Physical Repetition: Practice
The following method may sound crazy, but it works!
- Get in bed during the day or early evening. Try to simulate your regular sleeping conditions as much as possible. Make the room dark, get into your normal sleeping attire, climb in bed and assume your favorite sleeping position.
- Set your alarm for 5-10 minutes.
- Try to just relax and zone out. Fall asleep if you can.
- When the alarm sounds, immediately turn it off. Now go through whatever routine you’d like to be able to follow in the morning. Stretch your arms and legs out, take a deep breath, smile, and put your feet on the floor. Now stand up.
- Repeat. If you practice this strategy a couple of times each day, within a week you should be getting up in the morning without any problem.
Mental Repetition: More Practice
Getting up when the alarm sounds is one habit in which visualization can really be helpful as you work to develop it. Several times during the day, imagine your alarm going off and yourself immediately launching into your get-out-of-bed ritual. This mental practice is great, because it’s fast and it’s easy, and you can do it anywhere.
However, actually going through the motions is the most powerful tool you have. Even if you mostly practice mentally, do the physical practice at least a few times, because it allows your mental practice to feel a lot more realistic.
Getting up immediately in the morning is a habit that’s actually easy to put into place. The warm covers and thoughts of just 10 more minutes are powerful motivators to stay in bed a little longer. But getting up on time consistently is something anyone can do. Imagine all the extra time you’ll have each day!