We’ve all heard the stories of high-powered people and their morning routines. It seems that everyone who has found success in life wakes up before the crack of dawn and gets more done in those few hours than many people get done in a day.

Does the thought of waking up before 7 am make you cringe though? For many people who aren’t early risers, this is definitely the case.

I know this feeling all too well. I went from waking up at 7 am with just enough time to get ready and get to work, to waking up at 5 am so I could build my side business and quit my job.

This list gives you a few of the ways that I made the change in my life (plus more) and how you can implement these into your schedule as well.

Determine Your Why

Honestly, this is important with any major change that you make in life. Want to start a business? Determine your why. Want to work out more? Determine your why. Want to wake up early? Determine your why.

I include this step because you will not want to wake up early when you start this. So when you start thinking “Oh, I don’t have to get up until X time to get to work.” you can think about your why to combat those thoughts.

Maybe you want to use that free time to start a side business like I did. Maybe you want to get chores done in the mornings so you can spend more time with family in the evenings. Maybe you’d like to start a routine of reading, working out, and meditating in the mornings.

Whatever it is that you would like to do with the extra time, figure that out and write it down. You can even post it on a sticky note somewhere that you’ll see it often.

Start Small

You wouldn’t go from not working out at all to running marathons in a day. Same thing with changing your sleep habits.

Depending on how sensitive you are, you can change the increments of what time you wake up by 15 or 30 minutes each day or two. So if you currently wake up at 7 am – set an alarm for 6:45 am tomorrow.

Then once you get used to that time, back it up even more. Do this until you get to the time that you want to wake up.

Get Quality Sleep

If you’re going to be waking up early, then you want every minute of sleep that you get to be of good quality. You can’t get it right every night, but if you make a few of these changes then you’ll get close.

Create a “bedtime routine.” This signals to your body that it’s almost time to go to sleep. Don’t look at your electronics for about an hour before you go to bed.

Sleep in a cool dark room. If you need noise in the room then try a white noise machine or a meditation app instead of the TV.

Try to go to bed at the same time every night. If you implement even a few of these, your sleep health could get better.

Purchase a Salt Lamp

If you are sleeping in a dark room then a salt lamp can help wake you up naturally. You can buy them with built-in timers so they will dim when it is time for sleep and brighten when it is time to wake up.

While there haven’t been any proven health benefits to using a salt lamp, some people do report feeling more relaxed. This may be for some people and not for others, but I wouldn’t knock it until you try it.

These also make for a great gift idea so put it on your Christmas or Birthday list if you don’t want to buy one yourself.

Sleep With Your Phone Across The Room

Since you aren’t supposed to look at electronics for at least an hour before bed, you can leave your phone across the room and read a book instead.

I found this to be a game-changer with helping me wake up early. When my alarm goes off, I immediately have to get up and go turn it off so it doesn’t wake anyone else in my house.

Since I’m already up, it makes it so much easier to not just roll over and fall back asleep. 

Get an Interactive Alarm Clock

There are apps that you can download that make you solve a puzzle before the alarm will turn off. This helps to wake your brain up out of the fog.

Apps like AlarmMon and Memory Alarm Clock give you little mini-games to play that you must complete before your alarm turns off.

There are also physical interactive alarm clocks that either make you chase something, complete a task, or shake the clock.

Stretch & Drink Some Water

You would be surprised at how much these simple steps will wake you up. As soon as you get up and turn your alarm off, reach your arms up toward the ceiling and stretch as far as you can go.

If you want, you can create a 5-minute stretching routine or do a 10-minute yoga routine – whatever works for you.

Keep a cup beside your sink so you can drink some water first thing when you wake up. It doesn’t matter whether you do it before or after you stretch.

Try to Implement a Morning Routine

Ever heard of the Miracle Morning? People who have implemented this absolutely sing its praises. The basis of the book is creating a morning routine with six different elements.

The six elements are reading, movement, journaling, affirmations, visualization, and meditation. Even if you don’t implement all of these, even just a few will make for a great routine.

The whole point is to carve out time for yourself and fill your cup before the day. Routines help because that is how we form habits.

If you can get into a morning routine your brain will get used to this habit so you know what to do as soon as you wake up. The less you have to think about it, the easier it will be to start your morning.