There's something about the morning that strikes conflict. For some people the morning is cold, slow - a little crusty eyed. Rolling out of our warm beds into the frostbitten world is an accomplishment in and of itself.
When my Wife and I married in August 2014 we did so in Bali, Indonesia. We stayed at the Alila Hotel Resort.
It's really a magical place. The gazebo where our marriage was held looks over a sheer drop directly overseeing the ocean's arms. Stunning. But, there's something about waking up in a tropical place. Warm air already fills the atmosphere. Island life moves a bit slower and allows you to take in all the beauties before taking on the day. Contrary to city life, rolling out of bed into the steady, warm-tropical air feels natural.
There's something about vacationing in general that brings piece if mind. Usually, no alarm clocks buzzing away which slowly induce a headache as we rise. No. You wake to the warm rays of light, naturally as intended.
Alarm clocks. The alarm clock is ubiquitous and in my mind, the bane of existence! Older versions of the alarm clock buzz mercifully, usually accompanied by the most nettlesome chime sound. It begins the most important part of the day with vexation. Not healthy.
Try getting rid of your alarm clock. Try and train the brain to rise naturally. It's easier than you think.
With the age of smartphones, getting that morning dopamine hit is commonplace. How many of us roll over first thing in the morning to check Facebook or Twitter? Have you ever woken up, reached for your phone, only to realize that you haven't even checked if your partner was awake? Even worse, have you ever reached for said phone, checked, then look over to your partner only to see them doing the same? Sound familiar? I am certainly guilty of this. It's a quick way to spark our brains, like a lab rat in a cage constantly going back to the cocaine pellet.
Try setting your phone somewhere other than the bedroom. It will allow you wake naturally and spend quality time with your loved ones.
Breakfast. Most important meal of the day right? Do you eat breakfast?
I used to never eat breakfast. I would always plan my waking so that a shower, getting dressed and kissing the wife were the three things I did before sprinting out the door. Stop rushing your morning. Slow down and eat a breakfast. It gives you the energy you need not only for the rest of the day, but for the AM hours in which we get the most accomplished.
Tim Ferriss suggests to eat thirty grams of protein within thirty minutes of waking up. It kick starts the metabolism and helps you shed body fat. Scrambled or hardboiled eggs are a quick and tasty way to get that protein in. Another great supplement to my morning breakfast is coconut oil. I like Dr Bronner's magical concoction. Read up on all of the benefits of coconut oil here. I just add about 1-2 tablespoons into my morning coffee.
Another great trick although, often times f'ing miserable, is to take an ice cold shower. If you're are a slow waker and can't get moving early in the morning, DO THIS. Just give it a try at least once and you will immediately see the benefits. It stimulates your nervous system and is one hell of a start to the day. This also sheds body fat, a quick hack if your trying to lose weight.
Meditation. It's key to my morning routine. I never thought I would have twenty minutes in the morning to meditate but it's a “must do” nowadays. Make this a daily practice and you will immediately see results after the first three days. The science doesn't lie. It's insane that mediation isn't mandatory for children in public schools.
Stop thinking of meditation as a “woo woo” type of word and really get into the practice. It's f'ing awesome.
Exercise. Don't think power lifting. Think mobility exercise. Just get up everyday and move around a bit. Rotate your shoulders, stretch, walk. We tend to go from our beds directly into the car, right into our chairs at work. This atrophies the muscles and really screws with our posture. Take some time in the morning to get the blood moving.
Use a handful of these methods and you will no longer dread the morning wake. Popping out of bed will be something to look forward to as opposed to the proverbial bare feet on cold concrete.