10 Tips for Waking Up Earlier So You Can Succeed

Maybe you’re hitting snooze so often that you’re repeatedly late for work or just feel too rushed every morning. Maybe you’re switching jobs and needing to wake up earlier than you’re used to. Maybe you’re ready to use your flextime perk to skip morning rush hour and get to the office a lot earlier so you can leave earlier, too! Or maybe you’re looking to wake up earlier so you have time for your side projects in the morning. Whatever the case, these 10 tips will help you wake up earlier so you can succeed!

1. Set Your Alarm and Put it Out of Reach: It’s so easy to roll over, half awake and barely aware of what you’re doing, and hit the snooze button over and over again when your alarm or phone is right next to you. Instead, get some momentum and movement going first thing by putting your alarm far out of reach. That way, when it goes off, you have to actually get up to turn it off. Once you’re up, it’s easier to stay up than if you were still lying in your cozy bed.

2. Water, Water Everywhere: Water is a great tool for waking up and staying awake! Splash some on your face to feel a little more awake soon after you’ve gotten out of bed. Drink a whole glass to rehydrate and further wake yourself up. And, if you want to, hop in the shower and let that energize you to propel your day forward.

3. Morning Exercise or Activity: Once you get moving, it’s easy to stay moving and get to work faster. A little morning exercise like a walk or yoga will get your blood flowing, your heart rate up, and your energy levels perked up. If you don’t have time to exercise, you can at least do a little something to get active like jumping jacks or push ups to get the same boost that will help you get going and get to work.

4. Engage Your Senses: Most alarms only engage one of your senses—hearing—to wake you up. If you need a little extra help responding to your alarm, try engaging your other senses! Set your lights to turn on at the same time, set your coffee to start brewing and have it nearby so you can smell it, set your thermostat to cool down so you notice a big difference. When you engage more of your senses, you’re more likely to be pulled completely out of your resting state so you can get up earlier and begin your day.

5. Do Something You Love and Look Forward To: Like a kid on Christmas morning, it’s a lot easier to wake up every day if you get to do something you look forward to! If you’re struggling to respond promptly to your alarm, make time for a fun activity or something you love each morning. Whether it’s a show or podcast you love that you can only watch or listen to then, a puzzle, or a delicious food you can start your day with and not have any other time of day, give yourself something to look forward to and you’ll have a much easier time waking up early!

6. Find an Accountability Partner: When you’re the only one holding yourself accountable for waking up early, it’s easy to slip up and revert to bad habits like hitting the snooze button. Find an accountability partner who you can text each morning to make sure you’re both up and awake at an early hour. This external accountability may help you stick to your early bird schedule better than anything else could.

7. Prepare in the Evening to Streamline Your Morning Routine: If you hate the feeling of rushing around each morning or you’re regularly arriving late because you don’t have enough time to do everything you need to do before work, try streamlining your morning routine by preparing some things in the evening. Whether it’s your lunch and outfit for the next day or packing your work bag so it’s ready to go, the less you have to do each morning the easier it will be to get to work early.

8. Tell Yourself You’ll Get Enough Sleep: Hal Elrod, author of The Miracle Morning, found that simply telling yourself you’ll feel really rested and get enough sleep before you go to bed each night helps you wake up feeling energized and ready to start your day. Most people look at the clock and think something like, “I’m only going to get six hours of sleep tonight” or “If I wake up that early I’m going to be exhausted.” Don’t psych yourself out, instead, reassure yourself each night before you go to sleep that you’re going to get lots of deep, effective sleep and you’ll wake up feeling energized.

9. Go To Bed Earlier: If simply telling yourself you’ll get enough sleep to feel energized isn’t working, it’s time to bring out the big guns—aka going to sleep earlier. If you want to consistently wake up at an earlier hour, you may need to adjust what time you go to bed to make sure you get adequate rest each day.

10. Adjust Your Wake Up Time: If you’ve streamlined your morning routine but you still feel like you’re rushing around like a chicken with their head cut off each morning, it’s time to make a change. Adjust your wake up time (yes, this means getting up even earlier than you already do) to make sure you have enough of a buffer to do what needs to be done and get to work early.

If you want to succeed at work, you need to be known as the person who always shows up early or on time, not the person who is always running behind and frazzled each morning. These 10 tips will help you wake up earlier and stay consistent with that early bird schedule so you can succeed!