Sleep & Mornings

Problems Getting Up In the Morning?

Sure-fire strategies for getting out of the house on time in the morning.

First, if your main problem is whacking the snooze button until your hand goes numb, you need to buy a second alarm clock that is really loud and annoying and put it on the other side of the room.

If you are particularly adamant about crawling back in bed, take a look at the flip side of getting up. Do you go to bed at a reasonable hour? You may need to begin working on going to bed rather than waking up.

Next, take a look at what you need to do each morning (i.e. brush teeth, shower, dress, eat, let out the dog, etc.). Estimate how long each of those things actually takes. Also, consider the things you do each morning that aren’t necessary (i.e. check e-mail, watch TV, make phone calls).

Design a morning routine with estimated times and write it down. Make copies of the routine and post it in several places where you will see it in the morning, such as the bathroom mirror, the closet door, and the refrigerator. Every time you find yourself doing something that doesn’t need to be done, remind yourself that your goal is to get to work on time and those things can be done later.

[Free Resource: Get Control of Your Life and Schedule]

Also determine things that can be done the night before to make the morning run smoother, such as packing your briefcase or bookbag and putting it by the door. Choosing what to wear the night before and laying it out can save a great deal of time in the morning. If you make your lunch to bring to school or work, make it the previous night.

Wanting to be to work on time because it is important and valuable to you, and not just to your boss, is probably one of the most important factors in helping you maintain the motivation needed to be diligent about following your morning routine. If you are successful in sticking with your routine for 21 consecutive days, it will become a habit in stead of a struggle. The key word is consecutive.

If your weekend routine is different, you will not be able to establish the habit of getting up and following the routine. Most of us like to “sleep in” on the weekends, but don’t vary bedtime and wake up time more than 90 minutes from your weekday schedule, otherwise it will be harder to maintain your weekday schedule.

One last suggestion that may or may not be obvious is to have clocks where you can see them while you get ready in the morning. If you don’t know what time it is, you can’t really stick to your schedule. The other advantage of checking the clock frequently is to know if the routine you have designed is reasonable or if you need to adjust parts of it. Good luck with your efforts!

[Tired of Feeling Tired? How to Solve Common Sleep Problems]

Updated on May 10, 2019

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  1. I am an ADD (not H) adult with this problem. Although I have not yet quite mastered the art of getting up, after following the advice of this article I have some revised suggestions about what was helpful for me.

    1) When I wrote down my routine and posted it around the house, I would quickly revise it and have to re-write and re-post. This is just too many steps for a typical person with ADD. Instead, I found a great iphone app called Routinist that has helped immensely (I am not affiliated with the company). It is easy to revise since it is in a digital format. it sets timers for you. It also calculates how long your routine would take and when you would need to start in order to get to bed and out of the house in time.

    2) Setting a loud alarm across the room does not help me at all. The reason that I don’t get up is because sleep is warm, cosy, and lovely, and the real world in the morning is usually cold, dark, and tired, and having a loud alarm that will make your housemates mad adds to the negativity. Since ADHD is theorized as a deficit in motivation, instead of punishing yourself to get out of bed, I suggest coaxing yourself out with rewards. Literally the only thing that has worked for me is allowing myself to wake up gradually by listening to music. Then I eat a clementine next to my bed. I’m thinking of putting some chocolate there, too.

    The great part about having ADHD is that you need to think of creative solutions to your problems. So keep trying, and don’t be afraid to get weird!

    1. Thank you. Your comment was the only helpful part of this “article”
      Is this online publication even worth using as a practical resource? This is the first article I’ve read from them. (I’m a 30 y/o who was just diagnosed)

  2. This article was complete garbage save for the fact that someonewho actually has ADD gave some great and INSIGHTFUL advice and strategies in the comment section. This article was so maddeningly unhelpful and poorly researched that I had enough super-focus to navigate the mobile site’s SUPER GLITCHY AND JUMPY registration. Page to be able to comment!

    I’m not stupid, I KNOW what needs to happen in the morning. I don’t need a list of things I “should” do, I need a strategy that helps me make the best decision for the morning. I need a way to hijack my motivation and beat out the strongly ingrained habit of getting to my first appointment in the day 4 minutes late, with an empty stomach, barely concealed bed head and mints/gum because “9 more minutes” of dopamine and seratonin and oxytocin in my brain from my bedding is way more motivating in that powerhold state of waking up, than breakfast, a shower and a toothbrush will ever be. This article needs to be re written after there has been better research.

    Your editor sucks. This never should have made it to publication. At least not for advising people with ADD/ADHD/EFDD.

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