Your sleep routine needs to be intentional for it to be effective. Make a habit of doing the same few things each night in the hour before sleep, and choose actions which promote calm, move you toward the bedroom, and don’t stimulate you. For example, you might brush your teeth, meditate, have non-caffeinated tea, and read a book before sleep.

But don’t limit your routine to the night—you can use the advantages of habits to give yourself a pleasant morning, as well. Put together a series of pleasant actions that move you toward wakefulness and good health, and do them each morning.

Before long, you’ll be looking forward to both sleep and the morning—something few others can claim!

Avoid the Snooze Button

Here’s a nugget of timeless wisdom: if you want to get out of bed, you need to get out of bed.

There’s more to this than you might think. Hitting the snooze button traps you in an in-between state, neither fully awake nor fully asleep. It’s wasted time, and it keeps you groggy and grumpy for longer.

Instead, put your alarm clock on a surface that’s out of arm’s reach. You should have to get out of bed to turn it off, and by the time you reach it, you’ll be at least a little more awake.

If you need a further push, make technology your friend—or enemy, depending on how you want to think about it. For example, if you use Twitter, schedule a really embarrassing tweet to be sent out around ten minutes after your alarm goes off. If you don’t get up, instant embarrassment. It works.

Use whatever resources you need to in order to get yourself out of bed and awake. You’ll hate life for a few seconds, but trust us—it’s better than the stress of languishing in bed for fifteen minutes, having to skip breakfast, and getting a speeding ticket on the way to work.

Doesn’t a leisurely coffee and eggs sound better than that?

Engage in Morning Exercise

This is it—exercise is the crowning achievement that will ensure your entry into the gates of morning-person heaven. Unfortunately, it’s also the step that most people are afraid of.

We know what you’re thinking. Running at 6 in the morning? Stretching before breakfast? Picking something up before noon? Insane!

But if you skip out on this opportunity, you’ll miss out on a lot of happiness and productivity.

Take small steps—that’s the key to success in almost everything. Every morning, do a set of simple stretches before breakfast. Eventually, move on to a brisk walk. When you’re ready, jump on your bike or take a jog.

Don’t do anything too strenuous—at most, you want to get in some cardio that gets your heart pumping for about 30 minutes. This will get you ready for the day without exhausting you.

Doing this releases feel-good endorphins—your body is, literally, drugging you into happiness, and this warm glow will follow you throughout the day.

Don’t believe us? Try it, and watch as your mornings turn from grumpy to golden.

Redirect Your Thoughts

Finally, if you’ve been trying all of these tips, but still can’t seem to get enough high-quality sleep to feel energized during the day, you may need to turn inward. Your brain is the most powerful organ in your body—how you think can affect everything from your health to your weight to your ability to sleep.

Reframe how you think about your day upon awakening. If you’re like most people, you probably open your eyes to a feeling of dread. You’ve got to mow the lawn today, or put together that 20-page project at work. This dread of the coming day keeps you in bed and keeps your mornings dreary.

But you can change this. Instead of focusing on what you dread, focus on what you’re looking forward to. Change that dread of mowing to the anticipation of a great-looking lawn the chance to just think for a while. Re-frame that work project as the opportunity to hone your skills and look awesome to your boss.

This will be hard at first, but eventually, it becomes a habit, and the habit will become a lifestyle. You’ll not only have brighter mornings, but you’ll be a brighter person, as well.

Embrace the Rising Sun

Think of all you could do with a better morning. You can get things done before anybody is there to bother you. You can enjoy some quality alone-time. You can simply relax before the hectic day starts.

Allow the morning to be a gift rather than a curse for you by trying out these tips. You may find that you’re more of a morning person than you ever thought.

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