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Last Updated on December 17, 2020

6 Ways To Wake Up Early Without Feeling Tired

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6 Ways To Wake Up Early Without Feeling Tired

Whenever the concept of sleep is discussed, there is common perception that we should rest for between six and eight hours every single night. While this is a long-standing belief, however, more recent studies have suggested that this is a generic assertion that has little foundation in fact.

More specifically, the Surrey Sleep Research Centre in the UK are now claiming that it is the quality of sleep that important rather than the quantity. Moreover, the optimal amount of sleep will vary for each individual, with the average length of time between five and nine hours in total.

6 Ways to wake up early and not feel tired

While this insight reveals many things, it particularly highlights the fact that it is possible to be an early riser regardless of the amount of sleep that you had the night before. So long as you enjoy a deep and restful sleep, you should be able to rise in the morning without feeling excessively tired or overly lethargic.

There are also practical steps that you can take to wake up early and not feel tired, both in terms of your preparation for a good nights’ sleep and your morning routine. So without further ado, here are six of the most actionable:

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What preparations make for an prosperous nights’ sleep?

1. Avoid drinking coffee, red wine and consuming chocolate prior to sleep

If you are going to enjoy a deep and restful nights’ sleep, it is important that your cycle is left largely uninterrupted. It apparently takes up to four hours to fall into a really deep and energising sleep, for example, so constant interruptions during this period will detract from the quality of your rest and leave your feeling tired in the morning.

One of the most prominent causes of unrest are dietary, with some food items and beverages scientifically proven to disturb your digestive system and interrupt your sleep. Coffee, red wine and milk chocolate are all prime examples, so refraining from these items for as long as possible prior to sleep. Aim not to consume these products after lunchtime, but if this is not possible at least try to eliminate them from your diet after six o’clock.

2. Go to the toilet just before you aim to sleep

While most of us visit the toilet prior to climbing into bed, many of us will spend time reading, watching television or playing games before we drift into sleep. Our bladders can fill up slowly and largely unnoticed during this time, however, particularly because the kidneys continue to work throughout the night and while we sleep.

This means that rather than your bladder being full when you wake in the morning, you are more likely to be disturbed in the early hours of the morning to go to the toilet again. This will contribute towards a disrupted and fitful sleep, so it is crucial that you strive to visit the toilet right before you intend to sleep. Even if you are not desperate to go, it is important to make this effort for the quality of your sleep and impact that it will have on your outlook in the morning.

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3. Ensure that your room reflects the core principles of Feng Shui

While Feng Shui is not something that everyone has faith in, it is an ancient Chinese art which has a basis in Western values and logic. By following the basic principles of Feng Shui and organising the layout of your room accordingly, you can facilitate a more restful sleep that leaves you refreshed and energised for the morning.

This is why the layout of your bedroom is the most important from a Feng Shui perspective, and there are several steps that you can follow in terms of placing your furniture and positioning the bed. The latter point is most important, as the bed must be placed in a way so that you can see the door from your resting position without being in the direct path of the door when it opens. This delivers a strong sense of security when we sleep, while delivering a more comforting sleep.

On this note, the colours that you use in your bedroom will also have an impact on your mood when settling down to sleep. Nodding off with a positive outlook drastically improve the quality and the restfulness of your sleep, so it is important that you leverage colour psychology to create the ideal ambience within your bedroom. A combination of pastel blue and green shades are to be recommended, as they trigger feelings of serenity, calm and harmony without overwhelming the senses.

What can you do when you wake up?

4. Focus on something happy and exciting when you stir in the morning

Feelings of stress and anxiety always appear worse in the morning, thanks to a combination of our sub-concious thinking patterns that emerge during sleep and a rise in the level of cortisol in our bodies. This can leave us feeling tired and lethargic even after a good night’s sleep, so you will need to try to negate this by actively focusing on something positive relating to the day ahead.

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This will be easier on some days than others, so be proactive and try to plan for future days and make a note in your calendar. Birthdays and anniversaries offer obvious joy and excitement, while you could also identify national and global holidays before planning something special. The 20th June is referred to as Midsummer’s Eve and is the most romantic day of the year in Europe, for example, so it is the ideal time to plan an exciting trip away with a loved one.

Whatever you choose to focus on, starting the day with a burst of excitement will energise your senses and alleviate any sense of fatigue.

5. Create a manageable exercise regime for the morning

While it is possible to wake up early and not feel tired, this sense of alertness can quickly fade if it is not nurtured. This is where a relevant and manageable morning exercise regime can come into play, as this has the potential to instantly enhance your mood and drive higher levels of focus and concentration too.

This is because simple exercises such as jogging cause the brain to release numerous chemicals and endorphins into the bloodstream, which can alleviate the symptoms of stress, lethargy and even pain in some instances. Interestingly, it has also been proven that exercising in the morning also increases your energy levels for the following day too, so long as you focus on achievable disciplines that suit your existing fitness and daily schedule.

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6. Get your hydration right when you first stir

According to various studies, the way in which we hydrate our bodies when we first wake up in the morning is increasingly influential in terms of our mental outlook. Starting your day with a simple glass of water (before you eat breakfast) is known to kick-start your metabolism, for example, helping you to wake-up quickly and feel instantly more alert.

In terms of consuming a hot drink with your breakfast, try to avoid consuming coffee on a daily basis. While this has historically been considered as the ultimate way to stimulate the senses, science has proven that our body gradually becomes accustomed to the effects of caffeine over time meaning that it takes more to achieve the desired results. With this in mind, coffee should be used occasionally and in instances where you feel particularly tired, with alternatives such as fruit and regular tea consumed intermittently.

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Last Updated on September 16, 2021

The Real Reason Why You Feel Exhausted (No Matter How Much You Sleep)

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The Real Reason Why You Feel Exhausted (No Matter How Much You Sleep)

I love my sleep. I always make sure to get at least eight hours each night. I’ll even leave parties early so I can get to bed at my usual time Yet, there are still mornings when I wake up feeling exhausted, even after a great night’s sleep. Whenever that happens, I run through a mental checklist, grasping at straws to explain to myself why I feel so groggy: why do I feel exhausted? Did I drink too much last night? Did I stay up past my usual bedtime? Did I hit snooze on my alarm twelve times? Eight hours of sleep a night shouldn’t result in chronic exhaustion, right?

Regardless of how much quality sleep you’re getting, you can still feel mentally exhausted, burnt out, run-down, worn through—whatever you want to call it. Most of the time, you’re so exhausted you don’t even have the time or the sense to see it clearly.

The answer is right in front of your face, but you haven’t had a chance to step back and analyze your situation. Maybe you hate your job, or you’re worried about paying rent, but you’re not actively thinking about it. How could you with all that’s going on? It’s planted in your subconscious, lurking there and eating away at your morale.

That worn-down feeling is a cumulative combination of unconsidered stressful circumstances—an amalgamation of past worries and future anxieties. We aren’t talking about your regular physical exhaustion from a long day’s work standing on your feet. This is purely in between your ears. You’re overstimulated, and it’s dragging you down. But what’s the real reason behind this brain fog? Why do you feel exhausted?

The first place to look at is stress,[1] which is the body’s natural response to a new challenge or demand. Where are you currently experiencing stress in your life?

Most pain, exhaustion, or emotional fatigue is the direct result of stress. Daily life is filled with tiny stressors—running to catch the morning bus, praying you’ll find a parking spot, or worrying about the leak in your ceiling at home. As these small stressors pile on uncontrollably, you realize you’re white-knuckling through the day.

Mental exhaustion,[2] simply put, is long-term stress. It’s having a day like the above over and over again for months on end until it weighs so much it finally drags you to the ground. You can’t keep living like this.

You may have experienced this in the form of a “mid-life crisis,” or even a quarter-life crisis where you stop and realize you never pursued the things you once hoped and dreamed of. Life passed you by in the blink of an eye. What happened to the “purpose” you once wanted to get out of life? Maybe you wanted to be an artist and all of a sudden, you look down and you’re forty-three years old sitting in a conference room surrounded by suits and boring charts.

You’re faking your way through life and you’re tired of putting on an act.

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Why Do You Feel Exhausted?

“Depression, anxiety, phobias… so many things can be disguised in a way that gives a facade of normalcy over a person’s internal struggles.” —Morgan Housel

There are many reasons why you may be feeling exhausted. There may be times when you had complete hours of sleep yet ask yourself after waking up: why do I still feel exhausted?

Why? It’s because there are other possible reasons for this exhaustion other than improper or lack of sleep. Here are some reasons why you feel exhausted.

1. High-Pressure Occupation (emergency responders and teachers)

Working in a highly stressful scene like an ER or police department is an obvious input for stress. Long hours on the job and making high-level decisions in crisis mode need to be followed by a period of rest, relaxation, and debriefing.

2. Working Long Hours

Consistently clocking in 12-14 hour days for weeks on end can drag you down. Many occupations require this type of work seasonally, like accountants during tax season. But when you’re spending that much time at week year-round and there is no end in sight, mental exhaustion can become chronic.

3. Financial Stress

For obvious reasons, being in troubled circumstances with your finances can cause long-term stress and constant worries, which lead to feeling exhausted. How can you enjoy life if you can’t afford to do the things you enjoy? No matter how much you sleep, you will still feel exhausted if something is troubling you at the back of your mind like financial problems.

4. Dissatisfied With Your Job

When you ask yourself, “why do I feel exhausted?” Try also asking, “Am I satisfied with my job?”

Many people slog through life in a job they hate. Whether it’s your unruly boss, the team that you work with, or the customers who you’re sick of hearing complaining, being stuck in a dissatisfying job can cause feelings of resentment in work and your personal life.

5. Clutter

Whether you’re naturally a messy person or life has become so frantic that you haven’t even had a chance to clean or organize, clutter plays a massive part in mental exhaustion. Having a clear workspace and a calm environment to walk into makes a difference in mental clarity. This can also affect your productivity and your attitude towards your job.

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6. Avoidance and Procrastination

When you feel exhausted, it may be because something at the back of your head is troubling you. You may have some responsibilities that you should be doing or have done but still have not. Putting things off too long will cause hidden stress to climb on top of you like a monkey on your back. Avoiding your responsibilities and procrastinating are some of the possible causes as to why you feel exhausted.

7. Living With Chronic Pain or an Illness

Going through life with stress is hard enough. Add on top of that something like chronic back pain or a congenital condition and it’s like taking care of two separate people for yourself. This can also cause feelings of resentment, bitterness, and irritation around people you love, even those who support and take care of you.

8. Death of a Loved One

Losing a close friend or family member is something everyone has experienced, and it never gets easier. Many people try to play tough and portray to their loved ones that they are okay and dealing with it just fine. But the reality is that it’s weighing them down.

Be honest with yourself about it, and have someone you can talk to. Experiencing your grief alone and not sharing it with anyone may be the reason why you feel exhausted.

9. Lack of Purpose

Life needs to have a purpose. Every individual has a purpose that is entirely unique to their circumstance. It can be guided by religion, occupation, or an ultimate life goal to strive towards, such as writing a book or owning a business. Without an ultimate purpose, it’s easy to let yourself slip into a depression that leads to mental exhaustion.

What Should You Do When You Feel Exhausted?

“When you’re struggling with something, look at all the people around you and realize that every single person you see is struggling with something, and to them, it’s just as hard as what you’re going through.” —Nicholas Sparks

1. Talk About It

It may sound obvious, but talking through these struggles with someone is a form of therapy in itself. Chances are, someone has been through the same type of thing that you’re going through right now. Don’t hide it. Open up and learn how others dealt with it. It’s more common than you think.

2. Find an Outlet or a Hobby

One way to help find joy out of a life of exhaustion is to come home to a hobby. Unwind from the workday by doing something you love that’s also a bit challenging. Learn how to play guitar, play video games with your kids, read a book, or learn new recipes to cook for your family. Take your mind away from whatever it is you’re worried about. Focus entirely on the process and get out of your anxiety.

3. Be Realistic

You can’t do everything. Look at your schedule, and be honest with yourself and the people around you about what’s possible for one person to do in a day. You can’t change the world alone. Enlist the help of others and don’t be too proud to ask. Putting the weight of the world on your shoulders may be the reason why you feel exhausted.

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4. Arrive Early

It took me years in life to realize how much being early can relieve stress. Waking up five minutes earlier gives me five minutes to relax and think if I’m forgetting anything before I head out the door. Leaving five minutes before I normally would for an event gives me five minutes to arrive and get a good seat, scope out the scene, or talk to someone and learn something about the place.

Being early allows you to be relaxed and completely comfortable as opposed to running through life in a hurry. Settle in before anyone else and have the mental edge that you’re prepared for anything.

5. Exercise More, Try Healthier Habits

Exercise is probably the last thing you want to do. But have you ever regretted a workout? One hundred percent of the time it makes you feel better and gives you the momentum to have a great day.

Try healthier habits. Go for a walk right when you get out of bed. Try a new vegetable once a week. Drink more water. Stand more. Replace dessert with fruit. If you drink ten cups of coffee a day, try to go one day a month without coffee. Healthier habits ultimately lead to a happier life in more ways than you think.

6. Journal

Similar to talking about your problems, journaling is an excellent outlet for not only getting the thoughts out of your head but also to clarify your feelings. As you write, you’ll realize you actually didn’t understand what you were thinking. Writing helps that. Do it often.

7. Take Care of Something

Get a pet. If you’re not ready for a dog, then buy a few plants to take care of. This takes the attention off yourself and on to something that relies on you for livelihood. It will help put everything in perspective and relieve stress and exhaustion.

8. Meditate

This is such an overly-used cure-all, but meditation really does help with clarity of thinking and developing a sense of calm in your life. Researchers found that meditation “decreased symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression.[3]

It doesn’t have to be sitting with your legs cross, fingers in a circle, and saying “Oooommmmmm.” Meditating can take on whatever form you’re comfortable with. It can be taking a few deep breaths before you step out of your car, or it can be closing your eyes and thinking of your loved ones when you’re having a hard time.

Sometimes before bed, I’ll just close my eyes and envision a future I want for myself. I picture the people I love hugging me and saying “Congratulations.” For what? I don’t know, but I’m putting myself in the mindset to succeed.

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Final Thoughts

Dr. Alice Boyes, author of The Healthy Mind Toolkit:[4]

“The more you work on systems for reducing stress and excess decision-making, the more mental energy you’ll have.”

This is true in so many areas. Work on habits and routines that will eliminate the number of decisions you make. The more disciplined you are in these areas, the more freedom you will have to do the things you truly want and need. But also, understand how you are getting in your own way.

Author Tim Ferriss likes to ask himself, “How am I complicit in creating the conditions I say I don’t want?” or “What are the stories I tell myself that interfere with self-love?”

Take a look at the actions and routines you structure your life around. Are there small tweaks you can make to get out of your own way? What would this look like if it were easy? Sometimes, asking yourself questions like these can lead to surprisingly simple solutions and answer the question of “why do I feel exhausted?”

As I said, everyone is struggling in their own way. How you manage your stress may differ completely from someone else. By being vulnerable and understanding that you have the ability to overcome this exhaustion, you can begin to find meaning. Exercise consistent positive habits and the momentum will attract more positive momentum. Oh, and get good sleep!

More Tips to Help You When You Feel Exhausted

Featured photo credit: Hernan Sanchez via unsplash.com

Reference

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