If I will count the time I could have saved practicing this habit much earlier, I may probably not able to feel happy for a week.
When I decided to break my one bad habit and adopt a new habit, this was the first one came to my mind and I knew how much it will help me, because one thing I needed the most was time, I could not chase back the time in the past, but I definitely need to create more from now.
I tried it at my first attempt and I depended all on my willpower, yet it worked and I managed to do it at my first week, but that week was extremely difficult for me, and I was scolding myself badly and feeling so sad when I failed on the 8th day after trying so hard for a week, and failed again on my 11th and 12th day. I slept in again and did not manage to carry on the scheduled routine. I had bad mood on those days and I doubted a little whether if my willpower was not strong enough.
It could not be, as my willpower to change was never that strong, so I studied about it and found out the cause. One’s willpower will help but to make it a long run habit, self-discipline is the key, make it a daily routine and one will then wake up whenever alarm gets off without sleep back in. Now I get up once alarm gets off, basically I wake up everyday 5.15am (I used to set my alarm at 5.45am and got up only around 6.15am. I am grateful for the 30minutes extra daily that I could make use of.
By my experience, few small preparations help me through and make this habit an easy process:
- Find a purpose
– Wake up 15 minutes earlier than you usually get up. Visualise what you will do after getting up, be it to use it to make a coffee/tea or breakfast or to use it to meditate, make more time for yourself to not rush out for work. I see this as very important point, the more meaningful purpose you set to do on that earli
- Change the alarm tone (SOUND)
– Change it to your favourite hit song which you found it always excites you, motivates you when you are down. I changed it to my favourite Jessie J’s song, it always gives me energy to move on
- Place your alarm clock somewhere not easy to reach (MOVEMENT)
– I place my alarm/phone near to my window, which I must stand up to reach it. This helps me to make sure I need to stand up so my body will be stretched if I want to turn the alarm off
- Drink water once your mind is awake (TASTE)
+ Make the drinking water easy to access once you get up so that you can drink it, water refreshes your body
- Make a 2 steps routine
– Create your own 2 steps routine after alarms goes off, so that your body will be habitually adapt to it and become a routine. For me, my 3 steps routine are: (I) stand up (II) fold up my mattress (III) drink some water (before turn off the alarm), keep the same actions and it will become a fixed routine which makes sure you perform many actions before you turn off alarm, if you are sleeping in the same room with your partner and do not want to wake your partner up, make a 1 or 2 steps routine (for example, stand up and stretch before turn off alarm)
Use the precious time you now have with things you always find yourself no time to do, I do not use it to check email, social media, news, blog. Find a good reason for yourself to wake up with a meaningful purpose, I always ended my day feeling bad that I did not make time on that day to meditate, to write, to read, though I knew those activities only take me 15-30mins each to complete, the thing is when I tried to put them in the last in my schedule, I either forgot about doing it or I was mentally/physically too tired for it and I will not do them. But they are very important to me, that was the reason I felt bad I went to sleep without doing them.
So the 30min which I save daily from this habit, I will use it for these activities. It has never been so fulfilling to know you are able to do what are important to you, everyday.
Find yours, when is more appropriate to do things you love when you have the time all by yourself. That may be the quietest time you have, pick up those things that used to be so important to you but you hardly had time for, and do it
Do not feel bad on the time you could not save before practicing this habit, be excited on the time you save today (living in the present), and anticipate the time you are saving on tomorrow.