Entrepreneur life hacks – How to be a morning person
They say the early bird catches the worm and it seems that old proverb is true. Research shows that people whose performance peaks in the morning are better positioned for career success, because they are more proactive than people who are at their best in the evening time.
Rising early has other perks too – leisurely breakfasts, peace before the rest of the household gets up or getting to watch the sunrise.
Richard Branson is known for being an early riser, he usually gets up around 5am. In a post about why he gets up early, the business magnate said: “It’s about doing everything within your power to help your business achieve success.”
But if you’re groggy in the morning and prefer a lie-in, don’t panic! Here are some tricks to help you become a morning person.
Eat your way to energetic mornings
You may rely on your cup of coffee to give you a morning boost, but there are plenty of other breakfast items that can help energise you.
Peppermint tea is a mild stimulant and helps get your circulation going. But paradoxically it is also a relaxant, so it has a soothing, stress relieving effect as well. It’s the perfect way to start your day without crashing later on, as you do with caffeine.
If you’re addicted to your morning coffee, a whiff of peppermint oil will invigorate your senses and wake you up.
You can’t beat a classic – porridge. This slow-burning breakfast staple is still one of the best things to eat early in the morning to give you energy throughout the day.
And if you’re not into your oats – protein is the way to go. Protein is great for waking you up and making you alert, so think eggs and greek yoghurt.
Start the night before
Waking up is easier when you’ve done some preparation the night before. Pack your bag for work and start to prepare your breakfast to make your morning go smoothly.
Knowing you have a delicious breakfast ahead of you is an excellent incentive for getting out of bed. As well as prepping your porridge the night before, setting yourself up to have a good night’s sleep will also pay off.
Limit your caffeine intake in the evening so that you can get to sleep easily. Stay away from screens before hitting the hay – the blue light emitted from your phone or laptop disrupts sleeping patterns.
Instead of staring at your phone, clear your mind before bedtime. Do a few minutes of meditation, take a bath or take a leaf out of Bill Gates’ book and read. He reads for an hour every night before he goes to sleep.
The 8 hour rule
Getting enough sleep is the key to being a morning person. Waking up naturally, without an alarm, is a great way to start the day. But if this is too risky for you, invest in a clock radio and set it to your favourite station to help you leave the embrace of your warm cosy bed.
Richard Branson says sleep is incredibly valuable for a busy life. He catches up on his shuteye whenever and wherever he can, especially if he’s flying.
Get up to do a morning activity you enjoy. Stretching, meditation or exercise is the best way to shake off the morning fog. Most gyms open in the early hours of the morning, but if for a more enticing reason to get out early, a number of yoga studios do early morning classes. In Dublin, Lotus Yoga at Little Fitzwilliam Place have early morning classes. While Ashtanga Yoga on Cumberland Street hosts Mysore style classes that allow you to arrive any time between 6.30am and 7:45am to start your practice – this way you won’t have to rush.
Dave and Steve Flynn, the founders of The Happy Pear, like to start their day off with a dip in the Irish Sea. That’s sure to wake you!
But if jumping into freezing water doesn’t float your boat – getting out for a walk on the beach is a good alternative. The fresh sea air is sure to invigorate you, while the sounds of the waves will keep you relaxed.
There’s lots of great beaches in Ireland. In Dublin, there’s Killiney, Seapoint and the Great South Wall, which are great for strolling or swimming.
In Belfast, there’s Helen’s Bay and Crawfordsburn to name just a few. Alternatively, you can always watch the cruise ships dock at Belfast Lough around 8am.
Set yourself a motive
Before Arianna Huffington, co-founder and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post, looks at her phone or checks her emails in the morning, she takes a moment to breathe deeply, be grateful and set her intention for the day.
Since fainting from exhaustion, she follows a morning routine that also includes stretching, exercise and meditation – you can check out her full routine here.
By setting her intention for the day, she is mindful of her objectives from the outset and uses this to motivate herself.