How To Get the Most Out of Your Mornings
My wife was talking to me about a strategy she has been using to reduce stress in the mornings when she has to get ready for work. She’s started to leave the house just a little earlier. I’ve actually noticed a difference in her mood and our interactions even though at first I didn’t realise she was doing it. I can see the changes in retrospect. She no longer runs around like a headless chicken. I’ve noticed that she also has enough time to drink a cup of tea and have a light breakfast while we chat. This is definitely an improvement in our relationship not just in the mornings but also later in the day as well.
So let’s have a look at some of the strategies that you can employ to help you to achieve better morning results. Before I start I should say I’m not a doctor but I have experienced sleep difficulties in my life. I’m just saying what works for me.
Know Your Body
How much sleep do you personally need for optimal functionality? I find that I need a lot more sleep than other people tend to get. If I get less than 10 hours I start to find my functionality impaired. Do some experiments; try to find that magic number that is right for you.
Get Enough Sleep...
... By making sure you go to bed at the right time for you. It doesn’t actually matter what time you go to bed as long as you get enough sleep. So, if you find you need 8 hours sleep per night and you need to be up at 7am, you should go to bed by 11.
Get Up Earlier By Waking Up Naturally
This should happen naturally if you are getting enough sleep and going to bed at the right time for you. A quarter of an hour tweak here will have a significant result in reduced stress in the mornings and greater productivity during the rest of the day. You should begin to find that you wake up naturally and that you no longer need an alarm clock (although I don’t advise throwing out your alarm clock).
Have Some Breakfast – It’s Brain Food
So you are up and awake and have plenty of time. This is a great time to have breakfast. I love breakfast. I make sure to eat it every day because it really gives me a boost. Sometimes I have Weetabix or just toast and orange juice. I find personally if I start the day without it, I’m a lot more sluggish and less productive later in the day even if I grab some food later on. I see it as brain food.
Leave the House a Little Earlier
Leaving the house earlier lets you slow down. There is no worrying about the bus being unreliable or early morning traffic. If I arrive at my destination before the required time, then I might have a little walk around. I might buy an apple or look at the headlines of the newspapers and magazines if there is a newsagent nearby. However, generally I like to take a few moments for myself, to prepare for my day. This is when ideas happen.