I guess you could say I’m not much of a morning person. I like to wake up slowly and quietly. I like to have zero conversation until I have sat alone, in the quiet, and consumed one cup of coffee. Is that so much to ask?
If the first thing I experience when I am forced to emerge from the most perfect condition of the dream state is a barrage of yaps from my neighbor’s obnoxious dogs or my husband asking me “Where is this or that?” rather than just look for it himself because, most likely, it is in plain sight, I quickly get agitated and that sets the mood for the rest of the day. How a person wakes up MATTERS!
According to sleep and behavior experts, many people perform morning habits that establish the foundation for a bad day. To get off on the right foot, here are some tips on waking up well and why they work.
- Keep Mornings “Non-Digital” – Avoid the urge to log on to social media and check your status or dive into email to see what’s arrived or read the latest news and gossip or see how many “missed calls” you have. Keep computers and phones turned off until you have done some routine things like brush your teeth or have a cup of coffee. Be in control of the mood of your day before you risk reading something or listening to a message or viewing a video that could be very upsetting or controversial. Give yourself time to emotionally and mentally prepare for whatever the day throws your way.
- Wake Up Your Muscles – It is natural to reach for the sky in a cat-like stretch when you first sit up in bed after a long night’s sleep. But don’t just stop there. Every single muscle group has been deprived while lying in a prone position, practically motionless, for hours on end. Sit on the edge of the bed and reach for your toes. Reach for the sky with both arms and then arch sideways at the waist. Roll your head around a bit, stretching neck and shoulder muscles. Give your circulation a head start before padding into the bathroom to brush your teeth.
- Avoid The Solo Coffee/Juice Routine – It is easy to limit breakfast beverages to only coffee and juice, or, perhaps, milk. After all, isn’t that the age old tradition? Well, just because that’s the way it’s always been doesn’t mean that is the best way. Include a large glass of water with breakfast. Think about it. By the time you sit down to the breakfast table your body has probably been water deprived for a minimum of six hours, possibly even eight or more. The human body is desperately dehydrated by the time a wake-up call arrives. Replenish with plenty of water before beginning anything for the day.
- No News Is Good News – We’ve all seen the cliché images of a father at the breakfast table ignoring the rest of the family while he begins his day perusing the latest reports in the newspaper while sipping a cup of coffee. That is not a good wake-up role model. Considering that most traditional news agencies only report bad news or articles designed to spark controversy, that’s a terrible way to wake up! How horrible that only one hour into your new day you are already either mad, frightened or confused. So, just stop it. Read the news over lunch.
These are simple solutions anyone can adapt to. Nutritionists and behavioral therapists assure the public that by practicing these morning guidelines, a person should experience a much better and healthier start to their day.