The early bird catches the worm, or as Benjamin Franklin is often quoted as having said, “Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise. I think that Mr. franklin had a point. Want to get more done? Get up earlier.
What was true in Benjamin Franklin’s day is still true today. Especially when you consider all the things we’re expected to do and all the distractions we have to overcome to achieve them.
Whenever you read about the habits of highly successful people, many of them cite, getting up early as one of their habits. In my view, I think getting up early might be the worst-kept productivity “secret” of highly effective people.
If you want to get more done, you have to get up early? The earlier you get “up and at ‘em,” the longer you have to get things done before the noisy and nosy crowds push in. Mornings are peaceful, free of ringing phones, pager beeps, and email notifications.
You can jump start your to-do list and get the most important things finished or at least started before the rest of world wakes up.
I think this is a great way to start the day!
But it’s not as easy as it sounds for many people. Maybe you have tried getting up earlier and just can’t seem to make it a habit.
Have you tried getting up earlier by going to bed earlier? Many people find that when they do this they end up staring at the ceiling for hours, unable to fall asleep! Then they find it difficult to get up early!
Some experts say “listen to your body’s needs.” This means you go to bed when you’re sleepy, and get up when you wake up. Sounds reasonable, but unfortunately many people have a body that refuses to tell them to get up in the morning!
Their body says “Sleeeeeep in…” and “Hit the snoooooze button…”
I finally found a solution that works for me. It’s a bit of a combination of both of the above.
It’s very simple method and it’s used by many successful entrepreneurs. I’m sure natural early risers do this without even thinking about it.
In a nutshell, the solution is to go to bed when you’re sleepy (listen to your body’s needs) but then get up early at the same time every day—that’s right, 7 days a week. Your body doesn’t know what a weekend is, if you think about it.
I have made it a habit to get up at 5 am every day, even though I might go to bed any time from 10:30 pm to midnight. I go to bed when I’m too sleepy to stay up.
I know I’m ready for bed when I the book I’m reading starts to get blurry.
I do watch some TV at night, but I always turn it off by 9 pm. TV acts as a stimulant, so it keeps you awake artificially. In fact, TV programming is designed to keep you watching to find out what happens next. So turn off the TV and pick up a book instead.
You may be tired the first couple of days, but I think you’ll find, as I did, it’s easy after about a week. You’ll settle into a natural rhythm.
So learn How to Get Up Earlier and Get More Done and see how much more productive you become!
Till Next time
Mike Gardner is The Time Doctor