15 Reasons to Rise Early – Benefits Of Waking Up Early
Table of Contents
Benefits of Being an Early Riser
- Better Grades
- Positive Outlook
- Better Problem Solvers
- More Energy
- More Organized
- More Time to Exercise
- Better, Deeper Rest
- Less Traffic/Easier Commutes
- Uninterrupted Time to Work
- More Family Time
- Better Mental Health
- Eat Healthier
- Time to Relax
- First Choice of Breakfast Items at the Coffee House
How many of you have started an evening workout routine and made promises to yourself about visiting the gym every evening only to watch them die a tragic death? By the end of a long workday we are typically mentally and physically exhausted, and the thought of exerting ourselves further is enough to make you want to crawl straight into bed. As mentioned, I started my early morning routine simply to get in a quick cardio workout since by the end of the day finding the time to do so can be a challenge. However, more and more gyms are offering their classes earlier in the mornings as well since the evenings are often filled with schoolwork and family, leaving little time for extras such as exercise. Starting your day with a workout doesn’t only cut your early evening fatigue out of the equation, it is also super healthy for you! It burns more calories, and continues to do so at a higher rate after you have finished, plus it helps you sleep better at night. Exercise releases endorphins too, which area feel good hormones: making you start your day out in a good mood as well.
Everything described above equals a support structure for better mental health. Improved brain function, a lack of physical strain and stress, and restorative sleep are all components of an equation that results in your ability to release anxiety and approach your day as it comes. Not surprisingly, mental health experts tie good time management and organization combined with a good night’s rest to a healthier mind. Too much sleep and non-productive sleep leads to a higher incidence of depression and psychological illness.
I know that when I used to catch every last minute of rest that I could before rising, I also found myself slave to a pretty tight schedule each morning in order to get out the door and to work on time. Coffee? Grab it at the office. Breakfast? What’s that? The point is that in rising later (or late) you don’t give yourself the time you need to start your day out right, and breaking your fast from the night before is an important step in your productivity.
Skipping breakfast, or worse- grabbing high fat, high carb, high sugar choices while on the run- results in less energy for both your body and brain. Getting up with time to spare lets you enjoy a more leisurely pace each morning that can include a healthier meal choice and time to enjoy a better cup of (hot) coffee without the interruptions that are sure to occur after getting to work.
In short, rising early can give you the time you need to really enjoy the space around you. You may have just done nothing for the entire night during your sleep, but you weren’t really awake to enjoy that were you? By giving yourself the time to literally do ‘nothing’ you are also giving yourself the gift to unwind, and remove all mental stimulation that keeps you going all day.
Do yourself and favor and enjoy this from time to time by not doing anything. Pour your cup of coffee and watch the sun rise. Curl up on the couch that is usually monopolized by children and read the book you have been trying to start. Or even just sit and enjoy the silence of the morning in meditation. This period of silence can actually be incredibly beneficial to your brain as well. Sitting in silence increases oxygen to your brain as your breathing generally becomes deeper and more controlled. This helps reduce migraines, high blood pressure, and overall taxation on your body to name a few.
Richard Branson: Founder and Chairman of the Virgin Group
Tim Cook: Apple CEO
Bob Iger: Disney CEO
Michelle Obama: Former First Lady of the United States
Tim Gunn: ‘Project Runway’ co host and fashion consultant
Ursula Burns: Xerox CEO
Indra Nooyi: PepsiCo CEO
- Plan on a gradual approach to adjusting your schedule, or do it all at once. Depending on the type of person you either approach works. If you need to be gradual about it, be sure to get to sleep at the same time each night (somewhere between 7 and 9 hours before you want to wake) and adjust your alarm from 10 to 15 minutes earlier each morning. Or – if you want to rip off the proverbial band aid- get to bed set your alarm for your ideal early morning wake up call and just do it!
- Make yourself get up! Set your alarm on a shelf across the room, or use a tablet or phone with both sound and light to wake you more naturally. Once you are out of bed you are less likely to get back into it and jump into your morning routine.
- Go to bed earlier. If adults should shoot for 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night, get to bed at least 8 hours before you plan on rising. Plus, get rid of all those nighttime distractions, like tablets, televisions, and phones. The blue light emitted from them can mess with your natural melatonin levels that help with your falling asleep.
- Be motivated to rise each morning. Whether you plan on using this time for personal peace and quiet, or a chance to catch up on work without interruption, have a goal in mind to help motivate you to rise- even when you don’t want to.
If you never had a good reason to rise early, hopefully you do now. The benefits of rising early are far more reaching than being a simple time to get in some time to catch up on work and answer emails. It also can begin to play an important role in your mental and physical health, and may result in a better, happier you! If you are an early bird, we would love to hear how rising each morning has benefitted your life. And if you are a night owl, what are you waiting for!? Jump on the band wagon and reap the benefits the sunrise can bring.