For a long time I was a ‘late night’ person. Especially during university when I’d wake up late, eat crap food, stay up and do some late night study followed by same late night warcraft/Dota.

Although I miss those days, I now realise how unproductive that schedule. I understand there are some people that work well late and this article is not meant to convince those types of people. It’s more for the ones who are struggling to make the switch to an early morning person.

Many successful people swear by early mornings. There’s something about conquering the morning that sets the mood for the rest of the day. When I wake up before 6am, I just feel like today will be a productive day.

When I wake up after 8am, I know I’ll be in a rush to finish things as I go gym at 11 then take a nap, relax a bit and go boxing at 6. I NEED to wake up early and get in 4 hours of work. If not, the work day wasn’t nearly as productive as it needed to be for me to reach my end of year goals.

Anyway, throughout my transitions, I’ve found some whacky ways to wake up early. Below is one of them.

Off Your Phone and Put it Away from your Bed.

That’s right. Turn it completely off. I’ve tried this method and it works wonders. When I wake up, I have no idea what time it is and my constant paranoia of it being too late doesn’t allow me to get lazy and go back to sleep.

You see, the main reason you go back to sleep is because it’s ‘still early’. Your mind has recognised the time as being something it’s happy to skip and so it convinces you to go back to sleep, ‘just for a little bit’.

But what if your mind doesn’t know the time? What’s it going to do? It’s going to panic and set you on, ‘get up and check the time’ mode. In it’s panic state it will spend the next 5 – 10 mins waking up your body until you eventually get up and check the time.

When you get up, go to the other side of your room and check the time, you’ll be pretty awake. You can even skip checking the time till you turn on your laptop. That way your body is already in it’s ‘get to work’ routine. It will feel like there’s no backing out now and will continue to go along with your decision to start work.

Now, the above tactic might sound a bit crazy and your probably fearing you’ll wake up late but in most cases you’ll be too paranoid to sleep in.

It’s kind of like when you have an exam or important meeting the next day and your nervous about it. Your mind will wake you up early due to the nerves. Here, we’re trying to simulate the same feeling.

Today I slept at 1am and still managed to wake up at 6am. Normally I like getting in a good 7+ hours of sleep but really needed to wake up early and do some work.

Try it for a day, what do you have to lose then an experience? I’ve stumbled on some great habit hacks doing crazy things like this. I’ve found my craziness has allowed me to uncover some things most people haven’t.

– Mateen

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Written by Mateen