Man covering his face with his hands

The Struggles of Becoming a Morning Person

Morning people. Ugh. You know, those cheerful songbirds who spring out of bed with a smile on their face ready to take on the world? Are you one of these weirdos? I hate you.

But at the same time, I admire you. I envy you. I want to be like you. How do you do it?

For me, mornings are excruciatingly painful. Mornings are just the worst. 

Mornings and I are like oil and water, iPhones and Androids, orange juice and toothpaste, pineapples and pizza, Michael Scott and Toby Flenderson. You get it. We don’t jive.

Thanks to adult responsibilities, I don’t have the option to not participate in mornings. Said responsibilities require me to be up by 7:00ish during the week, sometimes earlier.

You’d think it would get easier, but it doesn’t, and it hasn’t.

When I’m up, I’m not really up. Don’t expect me to be functionable, or carry on a conversation. In fact, don’t talk to me until I’ve had coffee.

Coffee! What a God-send! I often wonder how this glorious beverage can supply life at such obnoxious hours of the day. This magical bean water is my lifeline.

I am who I am. And who I am not is a morning person.

Early Bird or Night Owl?

My wife is the exact opposite. She comes alive during the morning, and she expects me to do things like talk. It’s incredibly annoying.

Although she denies it, she turns into a gremlin after 9:00 pm, while I tend to hit my stride during that time. Sometimes at night, as I contemplate life’s mysteries, I’ll inadvertently strike up a conversation with her while she’s winding down. It never goes well for me. She lets me know that I’m equally as annoying for her at night, if not more.

Marriage is a beautiful thing, guys.

I’ve struggled with mornings my entire life, so I’ve often wondered…is a person just automatically predisposed to be a morning person? So, I Googled. As I do.

I came across a study on the interwebs that basically said a person’s genes play a huge role in this whole thing. And since it’s on the internet it has to be true.

In this particular study, researchers sampled over 100,000 people and had each person take a brief survey to indicate whether they considered themselves an early bird or a night owl. After taking the survey, each individual then submitted DNA samples.

The results were interesting. Researchers identified 15 different versions of genes that were linked to being an early or late riser. So your genes can actually determine your peak time and play a role in your circadian rhythm.

As with most traits, the whole morning/night thing is also hereditary. Want to know why you are the way that you are? Look at your parents. It’s science.

The Miracle Morning

You’ve heard it your whole life, “the early bird catches the worm!”, but is waking up early worth it?

Last year, I read a book that motivated me to attempt a major shift in my way of life: The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod. As the title portrays, the significance of a morning routine is the main focus of the book. The author makes a compelling argument that how you start your day is a major key to success and fulfillment in life.

Elrod outlines a 6-step morning routine that he put together, and he says following the routine will change your life. He gives the reader actionable steps that can be immediately implemented.

The book is great. It’s incredibly motivating and very inspirational. I highly recommend it. 

Of course, after finishing the book, I was determined to start my very own “Miracle Morning” routine. I was going to become a morning person. Once and for all.

My initial plan was to get up at 6:00 am every day. That time seemed very doable, and surely a couple of weeks of this torture would eventually harden me into a full-fledged early bird, right?

I mean, how hard could it be? I’ve done some pretty difficult things in my life.

This one time, I ran 20 miles. I’ve also completed several half-marathons. I overcame crippling and debilitating anxiety. I’ve come back from the seemingly bottomless depths of depression. All on my own, I might add. And, the most daunting task of all: I adult. Every. Single. Day.

Turns out, suddenly becoming a morning glory when you’re a creature of the night is difficult. Very much difficult.

My “routine” lasted about a week before I was once again hitting the snooze button elevently-billion times and hiding under the covers.

But today, I’m putting the past behind me. Today, I start anew. I’m going to do it for real this time.

In 2020, I am going to become a morning person.

Goals

I want to label this properly so that it sticks. This isn’t a resolution. To me, resolutions just seem artificial, trendy, and cliche. Resolutions fall by the wayside. I prefer to use the term “goals”.

My goal for 2020 is to get up at least an hour earlier every single day, establish a morning routine, and start my day with intent.

Every day is a new opportunity to become a better version of yourself. Apparently, a morning routine is the single most influential thing you can do to improve your life.

If you’re already a child of the morning and get up at 4:00 am every day, congratulations I guess. But for those flawed individuals like me, just envision what getting out of bed an hour earlier every day could do for us….

For me, maybe I could produce not only more content, but better content. Maybe I could add some organization to my life. Maybe I could drive to work at a safe, reasonable speed instead of racing the clock and Tokyo-drifting into the parking lot on two wheels endangering the lives of my coworkers.

Just imagine what our lives could be like a year from now. By this time next year, hindsight will be…..2020.

*cringe*…I’m sorry. I’ll go now.

Published by Hot Mess Press