I Don't Want to Get Up!
The article from this website describes my initial morning routine with amusing accuracy. I am one of those people that has a tendency to hit the snooze button on their alarm several times, only to wake up 45 minutes later than I initially intended, therefore forcing me to rush through the process of getting up and dressed, arriving to work a bit of a mess. I've never been much of a "morning person"; if I had it my way, I'd sleep in til 11 AM or noon, wake up, lounge around the house for an hour or two, then roll into work. Unfortunately I don't really have the luxury of doing so, since my schedule usually requires me to wake up by 6:30 to 7 AM five days out of the week.
In the past, I used nothing more than a standard digital alarm clock for wake-up purposes (too close to my bed, as the article mentions). Unfortunately, I figured out that I was actually turning the alarm off while still totally asleep, and awoke more than once to find I had slept in 30 minutes, 1 hour or (at one point) even 2 hours late for work! At that point, I decided to take the two-pronged approach to waking up in the morning: in addition to my standard alarm clock, I added a second level of wake-up protection that I thought was a little ingenious. I set the three alarms on my cell phone, making sure to use the loudest and most annoying ringtone I had available, and turning the volume up as loud as possible, and also setting the phone to vibrate in addition to sounding the alarm tone; I then would go so far as to put the phone inside my pillow case, close to my head, so that it was 100% effective in actually waking me up in the mornings.
So far, it's been a fail-safe system. Although I did manage to find a way around my somewhat horrifying tendency to oversleep, I still need to do some tweaking of my "routine". After forcing myself into consciousness every morning, I almost always find myself uttering the words "UGH. I don't wanna get up!!!" I then face the challenge of waking up my partner, and he is worse than I am when it comes to mornings. After I all but punch him in the face to get him up, out of bed and moving, I get up, washed and dressed, and (against the advice the author's advice) consume at least 2 to 3 servings of some sort of caffeine and sugar-laced beverage. Then I drop my significant other off at his job by 7:40 AM (we share a vehicle).
From there, it's a 30-minute commute to my job, but since I don't have to be there until 9 AM, I usually spend the time from 7:45 AM to 8:30 AM consuming even more coffee and caffeine (whoops). I leave around 8:30 AM and arrive at work by 9 AM, usually still in a quasi-tired, groggy and grouchy state; definitely not "bright-eyed and bushy-tailed" by any means (I love that expression!). I'm not sure if I would be happy taking the article's advice and completely abstaining from any caffeine-containing beverages in the morning, but I think I could start by making an honest attempt at cutting down my consumption. My beloved Amp energy drinks should probably get the boot, too.
The issue of breakfast is one I should probably address too. Most mornings, I tend to rush out the door without grabbing anything at all to eat, so I sit at work with a rumbling stomach until my lunch break; eating breakfast every morning, specifically something healthy as mentioned, is something I'm definitely going to work on in the future. Participating in some sort of cardiovascular activity like moderate exercise sounds like a pretty good idea to me too; I lead a shockingly sedentary lifestyle, both at work at home.
At work, I spend about 90% of the day sitting in an office chair staring at a laptop, only occasionally getting up to walk across to another building for a meeting or going outside to smoke (I'm a pretty unhealthy person). At home, I'm usually so tired after exerting so much brainpower at work all day that I feel like doing nothing more than sitting around watching TV, getting up off the couch briefly in short spurts to do some cleaning and various household chores. And I absolutely LOVE the suggestion of "rocking out to your favorite energized music" in the mornings...I sometimes do that in the car on the drive up to work, but I think it would be a great idea to incorporate that into my daily morning routine, because I do believe that that really does help.
All in all, I think the suggestions given by the author are great: I was already aware of the many ways I sort of sabotage myself in the mornings, but this article brought to light a few things I never thought about before, and gave me some tips that I'm seriously going to utilize in my quest to coexist harmoniously with the hours between 6 and 8 AM every day.