By Joy Ehonwa
Benjamin Franklin famously said, “Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise”. Waking up early can definitely boost your health, aid your wealth creation efforts, and help you acquire some wisdom for living too.
When you wake up early you have time to eat breakfast instead of running on empty, and also time to exercise- two activities that contribute in no small measure to a healthier you.
Jumping out of bed and rushing to get yourself and your kids ready is not a great way to start your day. You arrive at work looking disheveled and barely awake, cranky and behind on everything. When you wake up early, you get a head start by allowing yourself ample time to get things done. This puts you in a frame of mind to be more productive, think clearly and make better decisions, paving the way to greater success and higher earnings.
Also, the early morning hours are so serene and quiet. This quietude allows you a time of peace. Here you can gain wisdom in prayer, reading and meditation.
Here are a few tips to help you wake up early:
1. Go to sleep earlier. Even if you are not sleepy, still go to bed. Staying up late watching TV or browsing might be what you’re used to, but continuing like this while trying to become an early riser is burning the candle at both ends, and you’ll lose out.
2. Start slowly. Instead of making a radical change, start by waking just 15-30 minutes earlier than usual. Give yourself a few days to get used to this and then cut back another 15 minutes. Continue like this until you reach your goal time.
3. Place your alarm clock far from your bed. The temptation to hit snooze, or turn it off, will be overpowering if your alarm clock is right next to your bed. Placing it far from your bed will mean having to get out of bed to turn it off. And since you’re already up, your next task is staying up.
4. As soon as you turn off the alarm, leave the bedroom. Don’t allow yourself to rationalize going back to bed. Just force yourself to get out of the room. If you allow your brain to talk you out of getting up early, you’ll never do it. Go wash your face, brush your teeth, have some coffee, anything. Do not make getting back into bed an option.
5. Reward yourself. Early each and every morning, set an important assignment to do. This will “ginger” you to get up. When you’ve done it, give yourself a small treat- like soaking in a hot bath, enjoying a glass of fresh juice or a smoothie, or reading a few chapters of an interesting book if that’s your thing. Make this part of your routine. Initially you may feel you’re forcing yourself to do something difficult, but if you make it enjoyable, you’ll soon find yourself looking forward to waking up early.
On a final note,don’t wake up an hour or two early just to tweet, read blogs or go on Facebook (unless that’s part of your work). When you succeed in waking up early, don’t waste that extra time. Seize the day!