Have you heard someone say something like this before? “I get up at 5:00 am, workout for an hour, then read and meditate for 30-minutes, and follow that up with a nice breakfast.” Do you then say to yourself? “Oh great, look at you, aren’t you amazing, a ‘morning person.'” But secretly you’re jealous.

If you’re not a morning person and would like to become one, these 3 tips will help you to get there.

Accountability – Have Morning Meetings

Honestly, isn’t getting up early an accountability problem. If you’ve ever had a 6:00 am flight you know you are capable of getting up early. Or if you’ve had to consistently get up for a 7:00 am phone call or class, you know you are capable of getting up early. The common theme here is you are accountable or have an obligation to get up for, so you make it happen. You can use these types of obligations to help you become a morning person.

One simple way to do this is to schedule meetings in your life that require you to get up early. In my case, I have a men’s group that I am a part of at 6:30 am Tuesdays, racquetball early in the morning most Mondays, and I mentor someone on Thursdays at 6:30 am. On these three early mornings, the alarm goes off at 5:30 am and it helps create the habit of waking up early.

You will need to figure out what your meetings will be, but three a week can be a great starting point. Let’s look at a list of options for early morning meetings.

  • Personal training session
  • Gym date with a friend
  • Spin class, Aerobics class, Yoga, etc.
  • Bible study
  • Work meeting
  • Mastermind group
  • Volunteer for something
  • Mentor meeting (you as the mentor or mentee)
  • Breakfast with a friend

Everyone’s list will be different. Hopefully, this list will be a starting point or trigger your own ideas. Go ahead and think of your own list now, or better yet, write it down. Comment below with what you came up with.

Consistency – Set A Bedtime

The second tip to help you get up early comes from your elementary school days. Do you remember the 9:00 pm bedtime? Or for me when I was real young, it was 8:00 pm. Maybe our parents were on to something. According to the Sleep Foundation, adults ages, 26-64 need 7-9 hours of sleep. This means setting a bed time that fits your sleep needs so you can function well.

For many, the bedtime would be about 10:00 pm if you plan on getting up at 6:00 am. It’s more important to set a regular bedtime in order to get up early than it is to set an alarm to get up early. You can’t control when 6:00 am rolls around! But you can control when you get into bed. So for the second tip to become a morning person, set a reasonable bedtime for yourself.

Fun – Find Something To Look Forward To

The third tip is to have something fun you look forward to doing in the mornings. This could be something from the list above or the list you made. It can also be as simple as a special cup of joe that you make to treat yourself in the morning. If you aren’t getting up early and immediately doing something enjoyable, it will make becoming a morning person all the more challenging.

If you aren’t naturally a morning person, the combination of all three of these tips is what will help you become a morning person. Mornings that we look forward to and have accountability make it a lot easier to get up early. When you combine that with a decent night of sleep, a 5:30 am or 6:00 am alarm won’t be a big deal.

Don’t Become A Morning Person If…

Getting up early can be a great thing for your day and life, but not everyone fits this mold. My wife is a perfect example of a bad fit to be a morning person.

Every other month my wife, Kari, talks about becoming a morning person. She sets her alarm for 7:00 am and always struggles to get out of bed. It’s frustrating for her. But here’s the reality, she works from 11:00 am to 11:30 pm three days a week. Generally, Kari gets to bed at 1:00 am on the nights she works. Five to Six hours of sleep over a long period of time just ain’t gonna cut it. Sometimes getting up early just isn’t possible.

Not everyone can or should be a morning person. So if you have a schedule like this or you are a night owl, don’t fight it. You can be productive in the evening too. You can use the same ideas of creating meeting opportunities and finding productive things to look forward, just do it in the evening. Also, instead of setting an early bedtime. Set a time that you turn off the entertainment and become productive. Say, from 9:00 pm to 11:00 pm.

If you aren’t a morning person, just don’t do it. It’s not worth the frustration. If you can pull this “morning person” thing off, go for it, give it a shot. Share your thoughts on the “morning person” label below.