For some of us, mornings can be a real challenge (or even a daily struggle). But getting out of bed can be a whole lot easier – if you know the things you shouldn’t be doing. By avoiding a few common activities, anyone can rise more refreshed, focused, and ready to take on the day. And we’re spilling 7 of the worst offenders that may be keeping you from properly waking up.
A few harmless taps of the snooze button, some random social media scrolling, or even the morning cup of coffee could all be preventing you from a productive morning. But regardless of how you slept, you can take action to make your mornings a lot more energized.
Keep scrolling to see the 7 things you should be avoiding in the A.M. – and how to have a productive morning instead.
A great morning also starts with a good night’s rest. So don’t miss our posts 7 Simple Ways To Improve Your Sleep (Without Replacing Your Mattress) and Getting The Best Rest: 6 Highly Rated Bed Pillows (For Every Sleep Position).
1. Hitting Snooze
We get it. It’s totally tempting to hit the snooze button (especially after a late-night). But being at the whim of an alarm actually makes it harder to wake up. The 5-10 minutes between each alarm isn’t restorative sleep either – it’s simply disrupting your REM sleep and adding to the groggy feeling.
Instead of hitting snooze, set 2 alarms – one 20 minutes before you usually rise, and one when you usually rise. This will give your body time to adjust if you are in a deep non-REM sleep, and be fully ready to wake with the second alarm.
2. Not Making Your Bed
How can something as simple as making your bed make for a better morning? Think of a neatly made bed as setting the tone for your entire day. Starting things off with a bit of order and organization can put you in a positive frame of mind – and even make you feel better. Plus, getting into this habit also means your bedroom is going to be more appealing at the end of the day too.
3. Drinking Coffee First Thing
A cup of coffee is usually the first thing we’re craving after crawling out of bed. But before you start brewing, give your body what it really craves: hydration. You can lose up to one liter of water while you sleep, so sipping a tall glass of water is a lot more crucial than your caffeine fix. To make it even easier to get hydrated, add a water carafe to your bedside table (and ideally wait 90 minutes before having coffee).
4. Immediately Grabbing Your Phone
Part of what makes social media scrolling so appealing is the constant array of new content. But this is also what makes it less than ideal as a morning activity. It actually triggers a reactionary loop of responding to material served up by others – leaving your mind racing. And while we love Instagram as much as the next person, try saving your scrolling until later in the day to allow yourself some time to be present with yourself.
Instead of reaching for your phone first thing, try journaling instead. Keep a notebook on your nightstand and write down your goals for the day, thoughts and feelings, or some positive affirmations.
5. Eating A Sugary Breakfast
It’s natural to crave something sweet in the AM, as your blood sugar levels can drop while you’re sleeping. But indulging in a sugary breakfast treat will leave you feeling totally sluggish. So skip the donuts, muffins, or sweetened cereals and opt for something that will really energize you – like eggs, greek yogurt, or oatmeal.
Prepare an easy, healthy breakfast (like this chia pudding) the night before so you’re not tempted to grab something sugary instead.
6. Laying In A Dark Room
It’s normal to want a darkened bedroom to aid in falling asleep. However, keeping curtains or blinds closed in the morning (and depriving your body of natural blue light) will only make waking up even more difficult. So start each morning by letting in the light and get that vital vitamin c. And if you don’t get much natural light, a lamp that mimics the sun can work just as well.
7. Not Making Plans For The Day
The morning is an opportune time to focus on the day ahead. Your mind is at its most alert (and is ready to tackle tasks). So take some time to map out your schedule and get a jump start on any goals – short or long term. Your day will definitely go a little bit smoother and you’ll feel prepared for what’s ahead.