Although everybody understands the age-old saying that “the early bird gets the worm,” we’d be lying if we said every morning went perfectly without a hitch, and we also get a head start every single day. In fact, bad mornings tend to happen a lot more than decent ones for some odd reason, and it seems like no matter what we end up doing the night before, sluggishness and grogginess always meet us the next day.
However, nobody likes the idea of facing the same monotonous cycle right as you wake up, which begs the question of whether skipping the “morning sluggishness” phase is actually possible to do. So, today we’ll be exploring the reasons behind why such a phase exists and if there are steps you can take to at least alleviate the stress altogether to make mornings more manageable.
Why Does It Happen In The First Place?
Sadly, as much as we’d like to eliminate the grogginess we have to deal with every time we wake up, it’s a natural part of life that we can’t possibly remove. Think of it like starting your car’s engine on a cold morning; you don’t expect to have it ready to go right away, so you let it warm up for a couple of minutes. And the human counterpart to this would be (1)sleep inertia as you wake up and (2)exposure to a bad sleeping environment.
- Sleep Inertia Is A Thing: We know sleep inertia might sound like something we’ve pulled from a sci-fi skit, but it’s actually the transitionary state from just waking up to having full motor functions of your body. The body takes time to adjust to the morning, so it’s impossible to ask it to wake up by the snap of your fingers and ready for attention all of a sudden. Now, the rate at which someone goes from just waking up to full alertness is different for everybody, but it’s important to understand that waking up 100% is a gradual process.
- Bad Sleep Environment: Believe it or not, plenty of people actually have good control over their sleep inertia and the one thing that’s holding them back from getting those more decent mornings is exposure to a bad sleeping environment. A lot of us like using our gadgets well into the night, which means a lot of artificial light is blasting on our faces right before we get our much-needed rest. Furthermore, people also sleep a bit too late when they should’ve gone to bed a few hours earlier.
Motivate Your Wakefulness
Of course, with all those factors considered, there are ways you can combat the morning sluggishness phase, and it’s with the help of some intrinsic motivation for your wakefulness. Remember, people are creatures of habit, and to build a strong habit; you want it founded on a push factor that gives you instant feedback. And, while we can’t guarantee every single method below will work for you, it will at least give you an idea of what you’re working with.
#1 Start A Morning Routine
While it may sound redundant to keep singing the praise of morning routines, many people have still failed to stick to one for the long term. In fact, the lockdown measures during the initial outbreak of Covid-19 introduced so much disruptive change into our daily lifestyle that most people don’t even have a routine at this moment. Plus, it’s a lot easier to wake up when you know you’re going to get some good breakfast in your stomach or a bit of self-care with an effective shampoo for hair loss.
#2 Build Good Sleep Habits Before Bedtime
Likewise, you want to mirror the same morning routine with good sleeping habits before bedtime because this will set the tone for the day to come. Try avoiding too much smartphone usage and set it aside at least 30 minutes before you plan to sleep, so you give your body a period to unwind from all the hard work you’ve been doing. It also helps combat all the sleeplessness you’ve been experiencing, which means you’re hitting two birds with one stone.
#3 Get Your Share Of Sunlight
Vitamin D plays an essential role in both keeping you healthy and waking you up, so we also recommend going outside and getting your share of sunlight for the day. You can also take morning walks to insert a bit of cardio, and when you’re ready to take it to the next level, crushing morning workouts with outdoor exercise is an excellent way of being productive with your time. Sure, sleeping in does have its benefits but don’t forget to offset it by basking in some fresh rays of sunlight.
Mornings Should Be Your Best Friend
Overall. We think that mornings shouldn’t be dreaded and that we should work toward overcoming this misconception on morning sluggishness. It’s much better if mornings were to become your best friend anyways because it helps you get a lot more done and helps build your character.