9 Things to avoid or change when waking up

Waking up and feeling refreshed, relaxed and getting ready for the day without any hiccups is what every person dreams of, so here is a few point to get you on the road to achieving that goal. Perhaps you need a new mattress or maybe what you need is a better morning routine.

The way that you wake up in the morning can have an impact on your energy throughout the day.
The way that you wake up in the morning can have an impact on your energy throughout the day.

Don’t break your routine or get a routine into place

By having a routine every morning you are saving yourself a lot of energy that can rather be used during the course of the day. If you do not currently have a specific morning routine then implementing one is a wise choice. Or if you have when and you still do not get the desired results then looking at some of these points might help to re-evaluate your routine. All of us consist of very limited willpower and by not having a set routine every morning that puts us into an automatic mode, this mode is when you can do thing without even thinking about it saving your energy and willpower, you risk using a lot of your will power for small things when you could use it in a much more productive manner during the course of your day.

Reserving your energy by having an automatic routine is a quick, easy and smart way of starting your day the right way and ensuring you are a more productive person in your personal and professional life. You also need to make sure that you have the correct mattress and pillow for your body otherwise putting a proper routine in play will be that much harder.

Try to wake-up when it is light outside

All of our bodies are fitted with an internal clock and that clock is extremely sensitive when it comes to darkness and light. Say for instance you wake-up while it is still low light, you will be confusing your inner clock and brain and it will take the easiest road which is to make you believe you are sleepy, making it that much harder to get up and go. Always try and wake-up when it is light outside. If you do not have a choice and have to get up while it is still dark or low light outside then make sure you turn on a bright light immediately when you get out of bed as this will tell your brain and inner clock it is time to get ready for the day.

Once again if your mattress and pillow are not perfectly suited for your body then it will make this entire process so much harder.  This is also the exact opposite of what you need to do if you do wake-up in the middle of the night. If you do wake-up do not turn on a bright light as your mind will tell your body it is time to wake-up which will make it so much harder to fall back asleep again. Leaving you rolling around restless for the rest of the night. That is why when you do wake-up in the middle of the night use your bed lamp instead of the room light or even your dim cell phone light.

Waking up when it is light outside can improve your day.
Waking up when it is light outside can improve your day.

Make that bed

Once you hop out of bed and start your automatic routine make sure that routine includes making your bed the moment you stand up. Like they say “what done is done”. Not only will it help your room to look neat and tidy making it much easier to finish getting ready for the day but it also helps increase your productivity for the day and can help to put that routine into play. Making your bed first thing will give you that sense of accomplishment and get you ready to face the day.

Start with a stretch

Stretching your body can awaken your mind.
Stretching your body can awaken your mind.

There is nothing more fun than staying all curled up and snuggled in your warm cosy bed, however, if you have to get up for any reason like work or a few tasks that you have to complete then staying in bed is not an option for you. Getting yourself to uncurl your body and stretch is one of the first steps in waking up your mind, body and spirit. By stretching out your arms and legs while you lay in bed will help your mind release the required endorphins it needs to give you that confidence and happiness boosted feeling you need to get you through your day. That feeling that you can take on the world today.

This really only take a few seconds in the morning and will last you the entire day. If you are a person that tends to stay curled up into a bundle when you need to get up in the morning then you are bound to feel lazy and sleepy most of the time and experience much higher stress levels than those that do stretch. If you wake-up and do stretch and your body aches all over every morning and you have not been slaving away in a gym then perhaps it is time to have look for a new mattress so that this action can have the full effect on you that you require.

That dreaded snooze button

We all know it, that awful snooze button on our cell phones or alarms and we just love to push it again and again and again until we only have ten minutes left to get ready for work and leave in time making your mornings and day a complete disaster. This a big no-no according to scientists and the reason for that is because once you hear the alarm going off your brain starts to wake-up even if you do not want to. By pushing that snooze button you tell your body it is okay to fall asleep again which is a bad thing cause each time you start to fall asleep you form a new sleeping pattern that you will not be able to complete.

This action makes you feel so much more tired and very lazy once you do decide to get up. A solution to this is to try and get an alarm clock that has no snooze button and will go on and on until you switch it off as this will make you stand up cause you will be too afraid of oversleeping if you do fall asleep again and in some cases, the sound will irritate you. The other option is to place the alarm clock on the opposite side of your room, forcing you to get up and switch it off. This is also the moment that you have to kick start your routine by immediately making up your bed. Once you get the right alarm method that works for you and you start to wake-up at the same time every day, after a while, it will become a habit and the snooze button will be a thing of the past. Your mind will be so much more productive.

Cell phone, tablets, computers, all electronics a big NO first thing in the morning

Just like caffeine, picking up gadgets first thing in the day can be a big no.
Just like caffeine, picking up gadgets first thing in the day can be a big no.

We are surrounded by technology and it is hard to ignore them but its something we have to learn. We have all done it and to some of us, this is a habit already. Checking your emails, social media and messages first thing when you open your eyes is one of the biggest mistakes of all. There are quite a few reasons for this statement.

Number one: You deprive yourself of being productive in the morning with endless, mindless scrolling through your social media walls and emails, directly disrupting that automatic routine process you have been trying so hard to implement.

Number two: You get your mind racing with a lot of other things except for the important once that you have to complete throughout the day.

Number three: You get yourself emotionally worked up about situations on the social media platforms that you either have absolutely no control over or that is none of your business at all and once again depriving yourself of feeling happy, confident and ready to face the day with the right attitude.

Number four: You make yourself tired and lazy even before you have set a foot out of our bed by looking at that endless to-do list on your email calendar or checking to see how many unread emails you have to work through. The question that remains is: How do I stop myself from doing this? One method is to exercise self-control and force yourself not to look and to not make it part of your wake-up routine but rather create time in your routine later in the morning when you can sit down with your coffee and diary and attend to it all of your emails and messages with a  refreshed and open mind. This will ensure you work through it productively and not scroll endlessly wasting time and making you unproductive.

The other method is a bit drastic but it is needed sometimes, switch off your cell phone when you go to bed. This will stop you from looking in the morning as you will immediately climb into your routine once you alarm has gone off. If your alarm is your cell phone then get an alarm clock. If you do not have a landline then get a phone along the lines of a Nokia 3310, any phone that is not android driven and apps like your emails and Facebook cannot be loaded onto and make sure that only the important people have your number if they need to reach you in an emergency.That first cup of coffee

That first cup of coffee

Sad but true, drinking coffee first thing in the morning does a lot more harm than good. Most people cannot wait to enjoy that first cup of “joe” in the morning, however, this affects your energy levels throughout the day. How do you ask? Well, science has proven that first of all caffeine dehydrates you and between the hours of eight and nine in the mornings your body releases a hormone called “Cortisol”. This specific hormone is responsible for regulating your energy levels throughout the day and by drinking caffeine first thing in the morning you interrupt this process which causes you to have far less energy during the day and makes you stock up on caffeine all day.

This habit is known to be one of the hardest habits to break but by choosing to implement a routine you can manage this habit and train yourself to only drink that first cup after nine in the morning. Here are also a few drinks you can choose to use as a replacement for your morning coffee: Drink a large ice cold glass of water. During the night you dehydrate and coffee dehydrates you even further so enjoy a large glass of water to rehydrate yourself. You can put cucumber or mint in the water just to give it that refreshing taste or you can make a cup of luke warm water combined with a slice of lemon and a teaspoon of raw honey. Honey is a natural antibiotic which will help you to stay healthy throughout the year and lemon is filled with antioxidants. Both these will help your metabolism and water will rehydrate your system ensuring you stay healthy.

This habit is known to be one of the hardest habits to break but by choosing to implement a routine you can manage this habit and train yourself to only drink that first cup after nine in the morning. Here are also a few drinks you can choose to use as a replacement for your morning coffee: Drink a large ice cold glass of water. During the night you dehydrate and coffee dehydrates you even further so enjoy a large glass of water to rehydrate yourself. You can put cucumber or mint in the water just to give it that refreshing taste or you can make a cup of luke warm water combined with a slice of lemon and a teaspoon of raw honey. Honey is a natural antibiotic which will help you to stay healthy throughout the year and lemon is filled with antioxidants. Both these will help your metabolism and water will rehydrate your system ensuring you stay healthy.

We all love our coffee, but it might not be best to start your day with this beverage.
We all love our coffee, but it might not be best to start your day with this beverage.

Do not keep it all bottled up

During the course of the day and even throughout our lives we keep a lot of emotions bottled up. This is really not healthy because sometimes this will lead to much higher stress levels and stress is one of the body and minds biggest enemies. It can contaminate your entire system leave you feeling constantly tired and lazy and also affect your moods.

Why not lighten that load with your routine in the morning. If, during the night, you dreamt of some great idea for your next product launch or your child’s birthday party, do not sit on it all day, write it down the moment you wake-up as this will give you a clear perspective and open your mind so that it can expand more.  If you wake up remembering a hundred thing you have to do today, don’t let it take over your mind, write it down as this will help you to remember and clear your head so that you can focus on your day. Always make sure that you have a little book and pen on your bed stand that you can take with you to work or that you can turn to when you have your diary open in front of you and can prioritise your day. The moment you think of something you have to remember always write it down, either in your diary, on your email task list or your cell phones to do list, this will help you to wake-up feeling refresh and relaxed because you know you won’t forget anything. This also counts for when you go to sleep.

It is best to relax after a heavy day.
It is best to relax after a heavy day.

If you wake up remembering a hundred thing you have to do today, don’t let it take over your mind, write it down as this will help you to remember and clear your head so that you can focus on your day. Always make sure that you have a little book and pen on your bed stand that you can take with you to work or that you can turn to when you have your diary open in front of you and can prioritise your day. The moment you think of something you have to remember always write it down, either in your diary, on your email task list or your cell phones to do list, this will help you to wake-up feeling refresh and relaxed because you know you won’t forget anything. This also counts for when you go to sleep. Our minds start racing with our work and home life the moment we lay our heads down, so write down what your mind is telling you to remember and have a good night’s rest.

Forget about yesterday, think about today

This is a lot easier said than done, but yesterday is gone and what is in the past is in the past and cannot be changed. By pondering over everything that went on or went wrong yesterday when you wake-up you will only deprive yourself of the chance to be productive and energetically recharged for the day. This is a mindset change that you have to personally make. Every morning you can say to yourself “I choose not to ponder over yesterday but make today a much better day” Rather wake-up and start to think of what you can do to make today a much better and more productive day than yesterday.  For some people it helps if they take stock of their week once a week, so choose a day in the week and sit down and reflect on everything that went right and wrong at home or at work this week and gets it out of your system so that you can focus on the important things.

All of these points have one thing in common which is the perfect mattress.  You have to have a good mattress and pillow that supports your body to enable you to not wake-up in the morning with sore muscles and a cramping neck as this will make all of these tasks so much more difficult. Make sure to consult your local mattress shop regarding the right mattress for your body and start making a change in your life by changing your mornings.

Blog written by guest author Vasti Lourens.