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Last Updated on November 27, 2020

How to Get More Energy for an Instant Morning Boost

How to Get More Energy for an Instant Morning Boost
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The sound of your alarm clock goes off. It’s Monday morning. You don’t feel like getting out of bed, let alone completing your morning tasks. Now would be a good time to know how to get more energy in the morning.

Mornings are only easy for a select few people. It’s possible to train your body to get up and get moving without any trouble, but it takes time and dedication. For those of us who struggle with feeling tired in the morning, it’s important to develop strategies for a morning boost.

Here are 11 tips to help you get moving in the morning.

1. Set Your Alarm Clock to Play Your Favorite Music

The sound of most alarm clocks is miserable and can elicit feelings of anxiety in many people. Thus, by using a standard alarm clock, the first thought in your head each day is a negative one. That’s a terrible way to start the day!

Instead, set up your alarm clock to play music that makes you happy. The first thought in your head each day will be a bright one. Unlike with an annoying alarm clock sound, you won’t even want to push the snooze button! You will just want to dance, and you can’t sleep when you’re dancing.

Before you know it, you’ll be in a headspace that will make it easier to get out from under the covers.

2. Drink Caffeine Shortly After Waking

Often, people feel sluggish and slow for the first hour or two after waking up. Feeling groggy leads to lower productivity and means more time spent on certain tasks than is necessary.

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To eliminate the morning groggy feeling, drink a cup of coffee or tea within about fifteen minutes of waking up. It prevents you from wanting to go back to sleep and will give you the energy you need to get your morning tasks done quicker and get to work on time.

3. Place Your Alarm Clock Far From Your Bed

By placing your alarm clock far from your bed, you will be required to get out of bed to turn it off. Use a dresser or a windowsill, but make sure you have to take at least a few steps to get to it.

Getting out of bed is often the hardest part about waking up in the morning. By getting out of bed faster, you increase the likelihood of starting your day instead of pressing the snooze button.

4. Exercise in the Morning

Some light exercise in the morning will get your endorphins flowing and give you more energy. The optimal duration and intensity of exercise varies from person to person.

After a brief workout at the gym, I feel energized and ready to take on the day. In addition, it leaves the rest of my day open for other activities.

If you prefer something more relaxing, get out and take a short morning walk when you wake up. Studies have shown that workers who receive exposure to natural light in the morning tend to sleep better at night experience less depression, and fall asleep quicker[1]. These are all great reasons to get outside in the morning!

5. Drink Water Right Before Going to Sleep

When you drink enough water before going to sleep, you’ll have to go to the bathroom early in the morning. This will make you want to get up and prevent you from falling back to sleep.

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However, try to avoid excess amounts of water within the few hours prior to going to sleep as it may cause you to wake up in the middle of the night. I recommend experimenting to find the optimal timing and quantity of water to drink prior to sleeping.

6. Leave Your Blinds Open

Leaving your blinds open at night will allow the sun to enter your room and wake you up, helping you feel more alert. The sun is also a source of vitamin D, which is a natural source of energy.

One article pointed out that “waking up with the sun also allows your body to wake up gradually, in a natural process, instead of being startled out of much-needed REM sleep — a.k.a. the deep sleep your brain needs to learn, store memories, and regulate your emotions — with a piercing, sudden alarm”[2].

7. Eat Before Sleeping

One of the reasons why you feel groggy and slow in the morning is because you haven’t had any sustenance during the eight hours you were asleep. A small snack before bed can help prevent this feeling.

You can check out this article for the best bedtime snacks and drinks.

I usually eat a low-carbohydrate and easy to digest snack, such as cottage cheese, yogurt, milk and/or peanut butter. Too much food or those that are difficult to digest may prevent you from sleeping, so it’s best to experiment to find the best quantity and types of food to eat before you sleep.

8. Eat When You Wake Up

A small and easy-to-digest meal in the morning will give you a boost of energy. As discussed above, during your 8 hours of sleep, you haven’t provided your body with any sustenance. I recommend a piece of fruit, yogurt, or muesli with whole grains.

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A healthy breakfast is key to giving your body the boost it needs when you want to know how to get more energy. Try to make sure you get a good balance of protein, healthy fats, and carbs in the morning to give your body everything it needs to produce the energy you’ll need for the day.

Here is some inspiration to help you create a great breakfast: 31 Healthy Breakfast Recipes That Will Super Boost Your Energy

9. Go to Sleep and Wake up at the Same Time Each Day

Keeping a regular and consistent sleep schedule helps your body get in to a natural rhythm. By doing so, you will begin to naturally fall asleep and wake up at the same time each day as your circadian rhythm gets into a consistent pattern[3]. Waking up will feel more natural, and you will have more energy in the morning.

Use your circadian rhythm when you want to learn how to get more energy.

    In addition, it will help you fall asleep earlier. Getting the right amount of sleep will help you feel more energized. Staying up too late when you have to be up early the next morning can be detrimental to energy levels.

    10. Do Something You Enjoy Doing in the Morning

    Stimulating your mind by doing an inspiring or enjoyable activity will give you energy. Knowing that you will be doing something fun will make you more eager to get out of bed in the morning.

    Some ideas of things you can include in your morning routine are:

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    • Doing a short yoga practice
    • Reading an interesting book
    • Journaling
    • Going for a run

    Find what motivates you to get out of bed and get moving.

    11. Schedule Something in the Morning

    Having “peer accountability” is one of the most effective motivators. If someone is dependent on you for something or monitoring your progress, you will feel motivated to do it.

    Scheduling a breakfast or workout with a peer will give you a clear deadline to attain in the morning, thus giving you a kick-start.

    The Bottom Line

    If you want to know how to get more energy, start to apply these simple ways in your daily routine. Maybe add one of them to your routine every month. Gradually, you will have more energy throughout the day. You will also be more productive and achieve more!

    More Tips to Help You Get More Energy

    Featured photo credit: Dayne Topkin via unsplash.com

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    Mike Fishbein

    Mike is an enterpreneur and digital marketing leader.

    15 Fast and Easy Ways to Boost Mental Energy Levels How to Get More Energy for an Instant Morning Boost 10 Business Networking Tips: Grow Your Professional Network How Blogging Can Help You Grow Your Professional Network 5 Antidotes for a Burnout

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    Published on July 15, 2021

    Shift Work Disorder: 17 Ways to Manage it Better

    Shift Work Disorder: 17 Ways to Manage it Better
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    Are you having trouble sleeping? Or do you feel like you can barely stay awake when you need to? Are you left tired and irritable, lacking the joy and motivation that life once brought? If these complaints are tied to your long or rotating work schedule, you may be suffering from shift work disorder—a common ailment among professions with schedules outside the typical 9 am to 6 pm range.[1]

    Why does it matter? Let’s be honest—being tired stinks. It feels terrible and leaves you vulnerable to many health risks that well-rested people aren’t as susceptible to. Not only that, but it can also wreak havoc on your relationships and quality of life.

    The good news is that there are plenty of ways to help manage this, and you can start trying them out today! Some of the solutions may not be what you expect. For instance, you might have linked improved sleep to exercise, but did you know that being compassionate with yourself can also have an impact?

    Who Are Affected by Shift Work Disorder?

    Twenty-five million people are shift workers in the country, so you are far from alone if you are struggling with this. Shift work disorder is a condition frequently affecting anyone who works a job where their schedule is outside standard business hours. Nurses, police officers, firefighters, and factory workers are common examples of professions with schedules that rotate around the clock.

    Rotating shifts naturally leads to a change in one’s schedule, including sleep. As your sleep schedule becomes more chaotic, your body is unable to adjust and regulate itself and can result in having difficulty falling or staying asleep. This inevitably leads to less sleep, which is where some big problems can arise.

    What Are the Symptoms?

    Sleep is one of the most important (and underrated) aspects of our lives. Enough sleep and good quality sleep are critical to our emotional, mental, and physical health.

    Insufficient sleep can lead to a significantly increased risk of physical health problems, such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, and gastrointestinal disorders. Mentally, being tired contributes to having scattered concentration, difficulty processing information, and being more likely to make mistakes or have an accident. Emotionally, the fallout of being chronically exhausted is linked to poor emotional regulation including being irritated more quickly, as well as an increased likelihood of developing anxiety and depression.[2]

    Any of this sound familiar? If so, keep reading for some scientifically-based tips to help you manage your sleep better and get your life back.

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    17 Ways to Manage Shift Work Disorder Better

    Quality sleep, or the lack thereof, impacts us physically, mentally, and emotionally. The most impactful plan of attack against shift work disorder and to regain quality sleep must also reflect that.

    I suggest reading through all of the tips and formulating a plan based on what you think will work for you. Start by trying out one thing and build from there as you are able. Remember to construct a plan that addresses your physical, mental, and emotional health.

    Let’s start in the most obvious place first:

    Your Job

    1. Make Your Schedule the Best It Can Be

    Randomly rotating shifts has been found to have the worst impact on our health.[3] If you have to rotate your schedule, request to rotate shifts in a clockwise fashion.

    For example: work the day shift, rotate to the nights, then to the early morning shift, then start back on the day shift. Sounds silly? It’s not. Studies show that our bodies more easily adjust to changes in schedule when completed in a clockwise manner.[4] This is because of something called our circadian rhythm—24-hour cycles that are part of the body’s internal clock that carry out essential functions. The most commonly known of these is sleep. It has been discovered that our circadian rhythm adjusts forward more easily than it does backward.

    2. Speak to Your Manager About Keeping Your Workplace Bright

    Special lights have been designed to assist with circadian rhythm. It turns out that absorbing bright light that is most similar to sunlight can positively impact regulating our circadian rhythm.[5]

    3. Avoid a Long Commute to and From Work

    Having a long drive home after working a rotating shift is statistically not in your best interest. It’s been shown that fatigued/sleepy employees are 70% more likely to have a workplace accident and 33% more likely to be involved in a traffic accident.[6]

    To avoid putting yourself at risk by driving when you’re not at your best, catch a nap before leaving work, pull over to sleep, or stay at a friend’s house nearby.

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    4. Speak to Your Manager About Your Concerns

    Many companies that operate around the clock are willing and able to make accommodations to those working alternative shifts. Whether it’s helping you find a schedule that works best for you or connecting you with other programs designed to support your well-being, being in good communication with your employer is to everyone’s benefit.

    Sleep Attitudes and Environment

    5. Change Your Perspective and Start Prioritizing Sleep

    Here’s the deal: despite some pretty well-known dangerous effects of not getting enough sleep, somewhere along the line, our society began to think of sleep as a luxury. Some even consider it a badge of honor to “power through” without much (or any) sleep. People have been made to feel embarrassed or lazy if they get the recommended amount of sleep each night.

    Here’s the bottom line: sleep is not a luxury.

    Let me repeat that—sleep is not a luxury, and getting a consistent and healthy amount does not make you a slacker. Sleep is actually when our body does a lot of repair work on itself—blood vessels, muscles, and other organs. Sleep also boosts our immunity.

    If we could help people feel as proud about sleeping as we do about them working out regularly or sticking to a healthy diet, people might be a lot healthier.

    6. Make Your Sleep Space as Conducive to Rest as Possible

    This means tweaking your environment so it’s as enticing as possible for your body to go to sleep. Keep the room dark using blackout blinds, reduce the temperature (our body rests best when slightly cool), limit interruptions (phone calls, visitors, noise), and remove electronic devices.[7]

    Set yourself up for success by supporting yourself through your surroundings. If you wanted to lose weight, you wouldn’t frequently surround yourself with cookies, cake, and ice cream, right? Same idea here.

    Personal Habits and Choices

    7. Stick to a Regular Sleep Schedule as Closely as Possible—on Workdays and Days Off

    This is obviously difficult when your schedule changes on the regular, but the more consistent you can keep your bedtime, the easier time your body has getting to sleep and staying that way.[8]

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    8. Allow Yourself Time to Catch Up on Sleep

    Having enough days off to rest and recuperate is an important aspect of protecting your health. You wouldn’t expect to be able to drive across the country on one tank of gas, right? Filling your own personal gas tank is just as important.

    9. Take Naps, but Don’t Overdo It

    It’s recommended by the Cleveland Clinic to take a 90-minute nap just before starting your shift and then a 30-minute nap during your “lunch break” at work.[9] Again, this is all about keeping some gas in your tank and not allowing yourself to get to the point where you are running on fumes. Short naps will help you stay refreshed and alert on the job.

    10. Limit Caffeine to the Start of Your Shift

    Most of us love a good hit of caffeine, especially when we are tired. But overdoing it or having caffeine too late in your shift can negatively impact your ability to get to sleep when you finally have the time to do so. Moderate your intake to help yourself get some quality sleep.

    11. Avoid Alcohol Before Bed

    Unwinding after work with a drink can be tempting. It can make you drowsy, which many people mistakenly believe will help them get better sleep. Unfortunately, alcohol will actually keep you awake (or wake you up later). This obviously impairs your ability to get the quality of sleep you are looking for.

    12. Don’t Smoke

    Much like alcohol, people turn to nicotine to “calm their nerves” or help them relax. Also, like alcohol, nicotine has been shown to disrupt sleep.[10] Cut back or cut this habit out as able.

    13. Eat Well and Eat Smart

    Choose convenient nutritious meals and snacks. Nutritious food is the foundation from which our body creates the needed chemicals for quality sleep. Foods high in saturated fat and sugar have been shown to have the worst impact on sleep.[11]

    Also, timing is everything as they say. Eating too much or not enough before your shift can cause you to feel tired.

    14. Get Regular Exercise

    According to numerous studies, exercise can be as effective in treating sleep disorders as prescription medication.[12] Yes, you read that correctly—regular exercise is the bomb!

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    This one can be tricky to convince people to do, especially if they are already tired and short on time. If you don’t have the time to hit the gym, take a brisk walk, dance around your living room to your favorite song, or mow your lawn. Despite feeling tired, getting up off the couch and moving around (moderate to vigorous exercise) is best for reducing the time it takes to get to sleep and improving the quality of sleep.

    Mental and Emotional

    15. Establish Consistent Practices That Help You Relax Before Bed

    This can include yoga, deep breathing, a warm bath, progressive muscle relaxation, guided imagery, meditation, and hypnosis. These are designed to reduce physical tension and quiet your mind from thoughts that are keeping you awake. There are lots of great apps and free videos that can help you with this.

    16. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

    Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, or CBT as it’s known, works by helping you to identify thoughts and behaviors that make sleep worse and then developing new habits consisting of thoughts and behaviors that promote sleep. There are psychologists and life coaches who are specially certified in CBT that can help you with this.

    17. Show Yourself Some Compassion

    Sounds silly? Well, it’s not. A seven-year study conducted at the University of Mannheim concluded that the daily practice of self-compassion positively impacted people’s quality of sleep.[13]

    The concept of showing ourselves compassion is foreign (and uncomfortable) to many of us. Try going easy on yourself for being grumpy, and give yourself some credit for the efforts you are making in tough circumstances. What would you say to your best friend if they were struggling with the same situation? I routinely ask my clients this question as it’s sometimes easier to be compassionate to others than ourselves. This tip might take some practice, but the effort could result in a better night’s sleep.

    Final Thoughts

    Okay, there you have it—17 different ways you can help yourself manage shift work disorder, feel more rested, more like yourself, and enjoy life again. To get started with your plan, pick out a few tips that you can implement today, but remember to choose a well-rounded approach—addressing the physical, mental and emotional.

    Be patient with yourself. It takes time to build new habits. And show yourself some compassion and kindness—you might just be able to sleep better when you do.

    Featured photo credit: Yuris Alhumaydy via unsplash.com

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    Reference

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