The art of waking up early

Photo by Brenda Lin

Are you waking up every morning, enumerating all the expletives in the English language? Do you leave breakfast wishing that your cup could hold more coffee? Do you even eat breakfast at all? For all the inconveniences that an early morning lecture brings, it is a necessary evil for those of us who seriously messed up our registration. Luckily, not all is lost. Here are a number of things that you can do to make your 8 a.m. lecture not just bearable, but enjoyable.

As Ben Franklin once said, “Early to bed, and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.” Going to bed early must be one of the most underrated, even ridiculed ideas on any college campus. However, the benefits of sleeping early are indisputable. Studies have shown that people who go to sleep earlier are less likely to become obese and have better heart health. The first step to preparing for an early morning is sleeping earlier, and why wouldn’t you if it could improve your physical health?

Secondly, it is very important to use an alarm correctly. The first rule to using an alarm is that if you snooze, you lose. Hitting the snooze button is never a good idea because falling asleep after you’ve already been woken up is detrimental to your body’s circadian rhythms. Plus, it is important to get used to waking up with conviction if you are going to have to do it for the entire semester.

Next, make sure you allow yourself adequate time to shower, get dressed and grab breakfast. There is no point in making it to lecture on time if you’re starving, and you smell like a zoo. Finally, here comes the fun part: choosing the jams that you wake up to. Personally, I chose the most god-awful song I could possibly find on my iPhone so that I’d have no choice but to get out of bed and shut the darn thing up. A song that you like works just as well so that your alarm isn’t too jolting in the morning.

The final step to waking up early is to find a reason why you do it. Some of us signed up for the 8 a.m. lecture because of the professor we really wanted. Try to find something positive that results from waking up! Maybe you have more free time in the afternoon. Perhaps you get to see the sun rise, or feel the frosty air that will be long gone when all your friends emerge from their dorms.

Whatever it is, waking up for that 8 a.m. class should be a blessing, not a curse. If you stick closely to the tips above and follow your routine consistently, you’ll be strolling into first period with a giant smile in no time.