Tara McGarry | October 2, 2018
Wish You Were a Productive Early Bird? Try These Life Hacks
Getting up and running in the morning can be difficult—especially if you aren’t a morning person. Whether you’re a night owl or you just can’t seem to be productive before noon, we’ve gathered some of our favorite tips for having an easier and more efficient morning.
Before You Go to Work
One of the best ways to jump-start your morning is to get off to the right start before you even leave the house.
- Get Enough Sleep
Getting a good night’s sleep allows you to focus better and have more energy throughout your day. If you toss and turn at night, find ways to enhance your sleep quality so you’re better rested in the morning.
- Eat Breakfast
Breakfast kickstarts your metabolism and fuels your body and brain. Even if you don’t have a full meal, at least eat something (oatmeal, toast with peanut butter, smoothie, etc.) to get yourself in gear before heading to work.
- Prepare the Night Before
The easier it is to get out the door in the morning, the better. Choose your outfit, make your lunch, and get anything else ready the night before so you won’t have to think about those tasks in the morning.
- Give Yourself Enough Time
If you find yourself hitting the snooze button on your alarm clock multiple times, set it for earlier so you aren’t rushing when you actually do get up. You can also try going to bed a little earlier, too, so you have an easier time waking with your alarm.
- Use a Gentle Alarm
The buzzing, blaring sound of your alarm can be a less-than-gentle way to wake up and may make it more difficult to get out of bed. Instead, put together a morning playlist or get an alarm that wakes you up with chimes or the sound of the ocean so you can ease back into consciousness.
- Don’t Pick Up Your Phone and Check Notifications
Because many people use their phones as their alarms, it’s a habit to pick it up, turn off the alarm, and check notifications. Seeing things that need to be done the moment you wake up can be stressful, so save emails until you get to the office and texts and social media until you have a break.
- Make Time for Yourself
Whether you exercise (run, walk, go to the gym, etc.), meditate, journal, or do something else you love, make time in your morning routine for even just a few minutes for yourself. Keeping up with hobbies and focusing on your interests helps your mental capacity, which in turn helps you focus more throughout the rest of the day.
- Drink a Glass of Water
Downing a glass of cool water as soon as you get out of bed is a great way to rehydrate and wake up. Like eating, it helps boost your metabolism during the day, and it also helps push toxins out of your body so you can truly feel like your best self.
During Work Hours
Whether you go into an office or work remotely, these tips can help you keep your mornings productive.
- Find Your Most Productive Hours
To truly be efficient during the day, determine when you’re most productive. Go through your day and keep track of how your energy, motivation, and focus feel on an hourly basis. Track these things a week or so, then work on your most important tasks when you feel the best.
- Review Your Schedule
As soon as you start work, look over your schedule so you know what meetings and projects you have for the day. This way, you won’t be surprised and can plan accordingly.
- Complete Your Most Difficult Task First
After looking through your daily plans, decide which task is least favorable and knock it out first thing. Then you can focus on the rest of your work and not have that one thing setting you back.
- Set Up Your Home Office
One of the keys to being productive when working from home is setting up a dedicated office space. Get a comfortable chair, a spacious desk, and any other decorations or office supplies you need to be productive.
- Set Boundaries to Keep a Work-Life Balance
One of the most important things to do when working from home is balancing work and life. Decrease distractions by closing your door and keeping the TV turned off. You can even set office hours if necessary, so family members don’t interrupt you as you work. Once you’ve finished, you can more fully enjoy your time off without stressing about an unproductive work day.
You might never be a person who jumps right out of bed, but at least you can make your mornings more productive with these tips.