Wake Up!

By Robert Goldman

February 6, 2020 5 min read

For many people, every new morning is an occasion to celebrate all the wonderful opportunities in the day ahead. These energetic, optimistic human people wake up ready to jump out of bed and jump into their lives.

And then there's you.

You lie in your bed, mentally surveying all the potential snares and unredeemable disasters that surely lie ahead.

The likelihood that you will jump out of bed and jump into the fire keeps you frozen in the percales. You've gotten out of bed before to meet the morning, and the results have not been good.

Why in the world would you ever want to attempt such a foolish act again?

Eating regularly is the only good reason I can come up with, and I'm not sure even the promise of three squares a day is a sufficient reason to get out of bed. Danielle Braff has a different point of view.

Braff is the author of "7 Morning Habits that can Affect Your Entire Day," an article I recently came across on the website Mental Floss.

According to Braff and her experts, what you do — and don't do — in the early a.m. can "set the right tone for the rest of your day."

Stop yawning, and let's take a look.

No. 1: Hitting the Snooze Button

Allowing yourself one or 10 snoozes has a negative effect on your entire day, according to Joanna Kleinman, owner of The Center for Extraordinary Relationships. She believes that, "Emotionally, you set yourself up to be late, rushed, and stressed in the morning."

I agree. Instead of hitting the snooze button, hit the entire alarm clock. With a hammer. Repeatedly.

Snooze problem solved.

No. 2: Checking Your Phone

Whether its email or Instagram or the Kiwanis e-newsletter, your phone is full of "stuff that other people want you to be paying attention to." Kleinman worries this will "awaken your inner critic," not to mention your outer critics, who will surely pile on with plenty of reasons to ruin your morning.

The solution is simple. After you've smashed your alarm clock, smash your phone.

No. 3: Planning Your Day

If you wake up without a detailed schedule, opines psychologist Joel Ingersoll, you'll have no idea "where you have to be, or what you're going to wear." As result, "your day is already off to a frantic start."

Ingersoll recommends "organizing your day the night before."

I would go further. Before you get into bed, put on the exact outfit you will be wearing the next day. You'll wake up wrinkled — very trendy — and you won't have to waste a second deciding what to wear.

No. 5: Drinking Water ...

Ingersoll also recommends drinking a glass of water when you first wake up.

"Since you haven't had any liquids in your system for at least six (or hopefully eight) hours, your body is dehydrated."

His body, maybe. The only reason you would ever go six hours without liquids is if there is a zombie attack and all the bars decide to shut down. Since not even a zombie would dare come between you and your favorite elixirs, the need to drink some random liquid, like this "water," whatever it is, can be removed from your morning ritual.

No. 5: ... and Coffee

Registered Dietitian Ilyse Schapiro attests that coffee can "help keep our brains healthier and our minds sharper."

Whether this is a positive, I'm not so sure. Sharpen your brain in the morning and you will instantly grok the myriad ways that going to work is a mistake. Skip the coffee, keep your brain bogged down and unable to function, and you may just be able to drag yourself to the office.

No. 6: Skipping Breakfast

Life Coach Bruno LoGreco is a big believer in "eating a healthy breakfast consisting of nuts, fruits, and oats." He does not recommend "doughnuts and croissants," which may be good advice nutritionally but ignores everything we know about human nature.

Nothing motivates you in the morning like the knowledge that a box of doughnuts will be waiting for you when you get to work. In fact, this knowledge may actually motivate you to work earlier if it increases your chances of getting a cream-filled long john before the IT department strikes.

No. 7: Rising Early

The fact that Braff, backed by evidence from the American Psychological Association, claims early-bird wackadoos are "more proactive, get better grades, and better anticipate and minimize problems" will not convince you, but remember the main advantage of waking up: The sooner you open your eyes, the sooner you can go back to sleep.

Bob Goldman was an advertising executive at a Fortune 500 company. He offers a virtual shoulder to cry on at [email protected] To find out more about Bob Goldman and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.

Photo credit: Security at Pixabay

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