Night Owl to Early bird – 3 tips to make this lifestyle shift easier!

Waking up at 4:30 am was probably the hardest decision that I made this year. Even my name Nisha means night in sanskrit, and I have always been a night owl. But earlier this year when COVID hit I realized that I had no time during the day for myself. All my time was used homeschooling, cooking, and serving my yoga students and coaching clients. I craved some quiet time for myself and the only time I realized I could have is before my family woke up in the morning. After failing to maintain the habit in the past, I tried a few things differently this time and was able to make this process easier. I have to admit I’m loving it. I get 3 hours of peaceful productive time daily!  No wonder it is one of the top habits of highly effective leaders.

I use this time to meditate, do yoga, read, and work. Just by being able to get most of my action items done before my son wakes up, I feel I have more patience for what the days brings. So whether you want to work on your personal development or work on your dream project, here are three tips to help you go from being a night owl to an early bird: 

  1. Go to bed early : The key to waking up early and actually being productive is to have a good night’s sleep. Whether you need 6 hours or 9 hours, it is important to go to bed early. This might be harder than waking up early, after all there is an alarm to wake you up but not one to help you fall asleep. I practise a few yoga tools that help me wind down to go to bed early and fall asleep quickly. You can grab your free guide to better sleep tools here so you can start using them starting tonight.
  2. Maintain this routine even during weekends In the past I made the mistake of sleeping in during the weekends and waking up early only during the week. Most mondays and tuesdays I would feel very tired and sleepy because of this. Now I feel well rested and energetic everyday because I don’t need extra time to adjust my body clock.
  3. Do it in increments or do what I do : Change your alarm 15 minutes early each morning until you reach your goal but remember to also go to bed early so your body can gradually shift to this new routine. But if you are like me, an all or nothing kind of person, then I would suggest just put an alarm for your goal time starting on day 1. Wake up regardless of whether you slept enough or not. For a few days it felt like being jet lagged from a long trip to the other side of the globe. But eventually it got better, I ended up sleeping earlier, got good amount of rest, and started waking up fresh in the morning.

Waking up early has really changed my life. Just waking up early for a few days I realized that if I can do something so hard what else am I putting off thinking it is impossible. I have made a lot of changes in other areas of my life and business since adopting this new habit. So I hope the same happens to you and I hope you’re able to make good use of this early morning productive time. 

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