How to Wake Up Early and Actually Like It

Growing up I wasn’t really a morning person, but last year I decided to wake up at 6am because I wanted to work on my side hustle before my day job, in addition to already working on it after my day job. I realized I was able to maximize my time,  be more productive and I actually really liked it.

My day job hours differ everyday and on the later days, I go to the gym in the morning, that way I get to my weights without having to wait for them, my workouts go a lot quicker because it’s not as busy in the morning as it is in the evening and I get it done and over with.

If you’re thinking about waking up early to be more productive, here are 9 tips on how to wake up early and actually like it. 

  1. What’s your WHY for waking up early 

The reason I didn’t wake up early was because I didn’t have a reason to, there was no point and that’s why I wasn’t a morning person. 

But when I started to work on my side hustle I wanted to be more productive with my time because I want to turn my side hustle into a full time job, I also wanted to go to the gym in the morning, it’s less busy and I get it done and over with. 

My why’s for waking up early convinced me to wake up at 6am, I am now a lot more productive, I get more work done and I am going to the gym more consistently.

  1. Have something you enjoy in the morning, almost like a reward

This could be your morning coffee, a good breakfast, a good book. Save something you enjoy for the morning, this will make mornings a lot more pleasing. When I wake up, I can’t wait to have my coffee, and this gets me out of bed excited for the day.

  1. Go on your phone for 10 minutes max 

I see a lot of people recommend buying an alarm and placing it across the room, that way, when you turn it off you are already out of bed. This does work for some people, but it doesn’t work for me. 

I’ve tried this before and it did not work at all. When I tried that strategy, I found when I got out of bed to turn off my alarm, I went right back to bed because I was still so tired, my brain was not awake or ready to leave my bed.

Instead, when I wake up, I scroll on my phone for about 10 minutes, this allows my brain to wake up and get out of bed. You can either scroll on Instagram, play a little game or let a youtube video play in the background, this will give you brain time to wake up and get you out of bed. 

  1. Wake up early means sleeping early 

This is obvious, but if you want to wake up early, you have got to sleep early, if you want to actually enjoy waking up early and be productive. If you are sleeping late at 2am and waking up at 6am, it doesn’t matter what the past tips I or anyone else gives you, you will hate waking up early, you need your 7-8 hours of sleep to be productive, unless you’re a lucky bum and can function on less than 7 hours of sleep everyday, then have at it, but most of us need 7-8 hours of sleep.

Find out how many hours of sleep you need, usually 7-8 hours and subtract that from the time you want to wake up. I like waking up at 6am and require 7 hours of sleep, as a result I sleep at 11 pm and wake up at 6am, to get my full 7 hours. 

  1. Take baby steps

During university, whenever I had 8am classes I skipped them all the time, unless I had a test. I lost 10% participation marks all the time. I was never a morning person and was the type to stay up until 2 am and wake up at 10am.

However, when I decided to wake up early, I took baby steps. I slept 30 minutes earlier and woke up 30 minutes earlier, when I got used to that time, I continued to sleep 30 minutes earlier and woke up 30 minutes earlier. I did this until I found my sweet spot which was, sleep from 11pm to 6am. This took 6 months to perfect, but it’s worth it and I love waking up early now.

  1. Rack in the benefits 

You’ve probably heard this before, but one of the benefits of waking up early is that no one else is awake, you’re more productive and it’s true. No one is texting you, sending you memes, family members or roommates aren’t coming in your room to eat or talk. It’s literally me myself and I and it’s really nice. 

  1. It takes sacrifices 

The reason I slept so late before was because I would go out all the time, when you and your friends don’t have kids,  your schedule is a lot more flexible, we’re able to go get drinks on a weeknight vs. the weekend. 

However, if you choose to sleep early and wake up early, your social life will be affected. I was okay with letting go a bit of my social life because I needed to save money. AS a result, sleeping early saved me money and time to focus on building my side hustle, so that was a sacrifice I was willing to make.

  1. Plan your day the night before 

Planning your day really helps you to be productive. I use google calendar to plan out my day and I live by it. 

This helps me keep my sleep schedule on track and plan out my day. I put in my google calendar when I need to get ready for bed and when I should wake up. Then I will plan out my day accordingly, when I work, when I work on my side hustle, when I’m hanging out with friends, family or my boyfriend. Everything. 

This way I’m not wasting time thinking about what to do, I already know and take action.

Before work routine
After work routine
  1. Keep it consistent. 

Waking up early is no joke, it takes commitment and effort. But, if you maintain a consistent sleep schedule, you will find it a lot easier waking up early, since your body is consistently getting the needed 7-8 hours of sleep. Now, you don’t have to keep a strict routine 7 days a week, but have a good routine for at least 5 days a week.

I tend to stay up a little later on the weekends and wake up a little later, but because I am consistent from Monday to Friday at sleeping from 11pm to 6am, going back to that routine after the weekend isn’t too hard. 

However, If I break my routine for more than a week, it’s a struggle to get back to my normal sleep routine. For example, when my work decided to take a week break for the holidays, I took a one week break from my side hustle too. I went on a 1 week break and slept at 5am and woke up at 12pm everyday, it was crazy. I caught up with friends, I watched movies and life took over. When I went back to work, it was brutal, I had to drink two coffee’s everyday and even two coffee’s didn’t even help the first week, it took 2 weeks to get back to my usual sleep schedule. Now I am so happy my schedule is back to normal.

Takeaway:

At the end of the day, if you find you’re a morning person, you’ll find it’s worth waking up early

Once I decided to wake up at 6am, I turned into a morning person, I find that it’s so worth waking up early and love it. 

However, there are some people who are just night owls and that works for them. My boyfriend is an extreme night owl, he’s up until 6am and sleeps until 2-3 pm, I also want to note he’s also a student and doesn’t work a usual 9-5. But, he finds he is more productive during the night than the day and that’s fine.

That’s why I say if you find that you love waking up early you will find it totally worth it and enjoy waking up early. And if you’re interested in waking up early, which is probably why you’re here,  give these tips a try! Maybe you’ll convert to become an early morning person.

How I Manage a Full-Time Job and a Side Hustle

Side hustle over the past couple of years has become culturally popular and common, especially among millennials. In a Bankrate report, more than 50% of millennials have a side hustle. Before millennials there were baby boomers, many of the baby boomers who graduated post-secondary school landed a full-time job with benefits relatively easily, they just needed that nice piece of paper and some experience. Of course, this was all before 2008, when the housing market was not inflating at a crazy rate as it is now and technology didn’t take over the world, life before 2008 was pretty nice.

After the economic crash in 2008, jobs were slashed at an enormous rate, housing inflation continued to rise and millennials were basically f*cked economically and mentally too, I’d say. According to the Brookings Institution Demographer, in 2015 36% of millennials aged between 25 and 34 graduated from post-secondary school.

Now, if you have student debt, trying to own a home and don’t have a job with the pay you want, you bet the other option is side hustling. Then there are those with the entrepreneurial spirit, realised they don’t like their job, their boss or co-workers and want their own business in the field they love. And I’m BOTH! (just over here crying in student debt and living with my parents, don’t mind my sad sack haha).

My Work Week

For those who don’t know me, I work full time as a support worker, my schedule isn’t the usual 9-5 Monday to Friday and I surprisingly like that! My shifts are 12- 8 on weekdays and 11-7 on weekends. I have a rotation shift, I will work 3 days in a row, have two days off, work two days in a row, have 3 days off, and so on, this all adds up to a minimum of 32 hours/week and I have 3 days off. I use two of my says off to work on A.N.Y.thing, one day for researching/studying, and one for errands and relaxing.

My Schedule on a Day Off From my Day Job

Regarding content creation, on my first day off, I work on quotes and stories for Instagram. However, I don’t restrict just two days off for content creation, I will work on content creation day by day because content comes in unexpected ways. On my second day, I spend it researching studying my niche, check out “Day 2 of a Day Off from My Day Job” section for more information. And on my third day off I spend it relaxing. Let’s deep dive into my week!

Day 1 of a Day Off from My Day Job

I wake up at 8 am every day, spend an hour and a half on my morning routine, this includes washing up, breakfast, coffee, Ellen, reading, journaling and I write all the to dos for the day. My first task is blocking about 1-2 hours of quote creation. First, I’d think about quotes, I take inspiration from re-reading my quotes, reading books, past experiences etc., and add them to my list of quotes. I then take quotes from that list, slide them into Canva (not sponsored but I WISH haha) and create my quotes for either the next 4 days or week.

I’m about to give you a story HACK. A lot of times, I pre-record my stories. I have a list of story ideas whether that’s tips and tricks or me talking about side hustle, journey and life! The HACK is changing SHIRTS and LOCATIONS. I will change my shirts and film in different areas of my house or in my car. I will film about 2-3 pre-recorded stories, write out 2-3 tips and tricks for stories, get them all ready for the week, this usually takes about 2 hours.

After I’m done creating quotes and stories for the next 3-5 days, I work on my blog. I will go through my list of blog ideas, sit my a** down, put on headphones and start writing. This will usually take about an hour to 2 hours, I will finish a very rough draft and take a break to edit later. I take a break to eat, or run a few errands around the house and come back to edit for about an hour.  

Day 2 of my Day Off from My Day Job

Once I wake up at 8am, I spend an hour and a half on my morning routine, plan my day again (haha), set up my 3 quotes, their captions and stories. Next, I spend about 6 hours on researching blogs, articles in my niche.

I don’t mention my vision much, but I would love to build a brand and eventually monetize my brand by consulting other business of building brands and community. Sorry, this day is not as exciting, but just a research/study day. I will then spend 2 hours editing my blog!

Day 3 of my Day Off from My Day Job

I will spend this day running errands around the house, like the usual laundry and cleaning. I also go grocery shopping and meal prep because I HATE thinking about what to eat and cooking a meal in the moment. I am a LAZY cooker, I’d rather pop already cooked food in the oven, stove or microwave. AS a result, I meal prep a week’s worth of food, this usually takes about 3 hours. And I usually spend time with my significant other and friends!

My Schedule on a Work Day

On days where I work 12-8/11-7 this is how I schedule my day, so that I can still post 3x that day and have something for my stories. I wake up at 8am, I take an hour and a half to engage in my morning routine.

After my morning routine, I spend 30 minutes setting up my quotes and captions. I write out each caption for each post and save them on my Instagram. I post 3x a day at these times 11am, 4-5 pm and 7-8 pm est. time. After planning and saving my posts’ I will spend 30 to 40 minutes getting ready and packing my lunch and dinner, and post my first post at 11am. On the days where I work 11-7, I will just rush getting ready and make it in time to be out of the door 40 minutes before my start time.

I’m lucky to have a job that has flexible rules regarding phone usage, my managers are amazing and the rule of thumb is we’re aloud being on our phone, but only if we finish our work for the day. Because my quotes, captions and hashtags are already saved on my phone, it’s quick to post them. I try to respond to comments when I have the time or after work.

I also go to the gym 3x a week. If you’ve watched my stories you know I’m a late gymmer! After work, I’ll drive straight to the gym and I’m at the gym around 9pm or earlier, I gym for about an hour to an hour and half, I get home by 11pm and get ready for bed. I am usually asleep by 12 am or 1 am!

Take Away

This blog wraps up my week, but my week doesn’t always go as planned due to certain situations or events that show up! If you’re in a similar situation as I am, I highly recommend taking a couple hours every day to research, test and study your passion(s). I know it’s extremely tempting to take off your bra, change into PJs and watch Netflix, but your dream life won’t be a reality if you don’t show up! I know you are all badass boss’ and can kill it! Keep hustling loves ❤