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1. SET YOUR ALARM THE RIGHT WAY
Most of us probably use our smartphones to set our morning alarms, and we also probably don’t put much thought into how we label these alarms, am I right?
Well, I used to get up at 5:00AM for work. It was brutal, I had to make sure I was able to peel myself off my bed so I decided to have some fun with labeling my alarms. Here’s how it used to look like:
While it was funny at the time, I didn’t realize it was actually contributing to my anxiety. I mean, I’m literally waking up to my phone cussing me out and telling me to panic. Now that I’ve realized that (and also quit that job), my alarm now looks like this:
Although it’s a small change, it starts my day off with encouraging words and positivity so yes, that in itself is definitely an attitude improvement. On some mornings, I even find myself waking up with a smile because of it!
2. SLEEP WITH THE CURTAINS OPEN
I know most of us love sleeping in pitch black darkness, but that’s part of the problem – we love it so much we don’t want to get up! So while we rely on alarms to wake us up, it’s much nicer to be woken up by your own biological clock. I actually accidentally discovered this little tip during a really warm night when I had to leave my windows and curtains open to let more air into the room. The next morning, I woke up naturally and painlessly about 5 minutes before my alarm even went off. Since then, I’ve been doing it almost every night. I don’t know about you, but I’d sacrifice having that pitch black darkness over having to hear the dreadful piercing sound of my alarm in the morning. And here’s the thing, you don’t even have to leave your curtains wide open if you feel uncomfortable doing that. I’ve installed 2 layers of curtains – 1 transparent, 1 opaque, and I just draw the opaque one and let the sun rays seep through the transparent layer. Oh yes, that nice, soft, oozy morning sun.
3. YOU DON’T ALWAYS HAVE TO LOSE IF YOU SNOOZE
Yes yes, I’m definitely guilty of being a snooze queen. Probably 1 out of 3 times when I decide to snooze, I find myself waking up, totally in panic mode, drenched in cold sweat because I know I’m definitely running late to work. So lately, I’ve been practicing something a little different without totally giving up that glorious cozy blanket time. If I wake up feeling extra tired that day and getting out of bed seems like a completely ridiculous idea, I just lie there (you can also keep your eyes closed while you do this but be aware that that’s danger zone) and start to list all the things I’m grateful for in my head. This way I’m slowly and gently waking up my mind as well as reminding myself of why I should stay motivated! Although this method might sound a little woo-woo, don’t knock it before you try it!
4. EXERCISE FIRST THING IN THE MORNING
Over a month and a half ago, I had a bunch of sweets and heavy meals during the holidays season and one night as I was about to take a shower, I saw myself in the mirror and I was like “oh heck no.” Although at first, that might’ve totally been a vain reaction, negative thoughts started to creep into my mind and started eating away at my self-esteem. The next morning I woke up, I went straight into a 30-minute workout, and I just felt this wave of relief over me after I completed the workout routine. Since then, I’ve been waking up every day and working out for 30 minutes every morning. It doesn’t even have to be a crazy workout, you don’t need a gym membership, or any gym equipment at all. It can be just a simple body-weight exercise, cardio, or yoga. Some days you’ll feel like going harder and other days you’ll just wanna stretch, chill, and recover, it’s all good! I can truly say that the one thing that helped me stay consistent, is learning that I’m exercising for my health and my mental well-being, and no longer for vain reasons because that by itself won’t last. Exercising first thing in the morning trains you to fight through the day that’s ahead of you and builds physical and mental resilience. It can also help you improve your overall mood and mindset over time.
5. DRESS TO IMPRESS YOURSELF
Something I’ve noticed since I was in grade school (such a far faded memory sometimes!), the first week of school I was definitely looking cute af. By the end of the year, I’m in sweats, sometimes the same ones for 2 days in a row (I know.) But don’t overlook this one – dressing well helps you feel good about yourself and your self-esteem. You don’t even need to go all out if you’re not feeling it or just ain’t got the time. I make it an effort to throw on a cute sumthin’ – sumthin’ whether it’s a hat, belt, jewelry, etc to spice up my casual jeans and t-shirt. Or, if I really don’t have time and can’t think of what to accessorize myself with, I slap on a bold colored lipstick and strut out the door. Boom.