Engineering the Perfect Morning in 8 Easy Steps

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Have you had your coffee yet? Stretch it out; it’s okay. Nothing quite like the old cigarette and cup of joe to kick start the day into gear, or maybe leisurely scrolling a Wondergressive post on the john is more your speed. Remember when you’d spring to life hours before the sun, like, say on Christmas morning? You couldn’t fall asleep from excitement and erupted from slumber like the rambunctious little meth-head every kid is. Well guess what friends… we can have that majesty again, and not just once a year, but every morning. Check out these 8 simple steps to supercharging your mornings and life:

1)

If you’re reading an article on this site, you’re probably pretty smart, and kudos to you already, so maybe you’ve heard of this thing called the REM cycle. Turns out the number of cycles is not as important as we’d previously imagined; rather, timing is the key. Those non-hangover days when, even with a full 8 hours, you feel like a monkey’s been bludgeoning you with a bag of unripe oranges (maybe the 6th cup will do the trick), most likely your alarm sounded mid-REM cycle, and this is a big deal. If the cycle is interrupted, this is a day of grogginess. Contrarily, rising between REMs leaves you alert and rested. A REM cycle is 90 minutes, give or take, so instead of getting a solid 8, aim for a solid 7.5 hours a night. You’ll be walking on (not sunshine) regular terrain, throwing away the old “I’m just not a morning person.” Likewise, 6 hours (optimal on average) or less will do the trick as well, though you may want to nap later with the latter. Easy-peezy. If you need to be up at 7am, hit the pillow at 11:15pm (15mins to fall asleep). With the demons of drowsiness never again jabbing your skull, it’ll be much easier to…

2)

Wake up early. I promise this is an easy step. Was it ever hard to roll out of the race-car to pillage Santa’s haul? If you’re awesome, and I’ll bet you are, you have a to-do list 6 pages deep and it’s become more of a “shit that’ll happen when I win the lottery” list. What a vicious, unending cycle, especially since “buy lottery ticket” is on that list. But you’re clever and ambitious; you know what to do to find those extra hours to get it all done: wake up early. Like we’ve already seen, 6 hours is a great amount of sleep where you’ll feel peak-rested. Congratulations, you’ve just found an extra 2 hours of private time every day (6 extra years of consciousness added to your life). While the world hits snooze, you can…

3)

Set an isochronic alarm. Good odds you’re reading this on your phone/mp3/alarm clock/everything, and you can set an alarm to sound any noise you’d like (if you don’t know how, Google it). Trythis iso-tone. It’s a sound that, when heard, snaps the mind into high gear (Make sure to check out the science behind isochronic tones– it’s pretty cool but beyond the scope of this article). No need to shut it off, by the way. This tone makes a great background to your…

4)

Dream journal. Why dream journal? It’s fun, for one. Keeping a journal of your dreams is like sharing an intimate conversation with your subconscious; never mind if you don’t have dreams (you do, everyone dreams every single night), start with anything, even a vague memory of a color, and details will start flooding back as the pen lurches rapidly to scrawl them. Even these few minutes of creativity, because they’re first thing, set a tone of greatness for the rest of the day, although no one will hold it against you if you still need…

5)

Coffee. Yes, have your coffee if that’s your thing (did you think I’d say you couldn’t?), but that delectable god-nectar takes a bit to brew, so in the meantime, we’ll be needing an empty stomach anyway for…

5.5)

Exercise. It doesn’t take much to get the job done; we’re not training for the Olympics. 10-15 minutes of easy calisthenics right at waking gets the blood flowing and kick starts the metabolism so your breakfast won’t sludge into more mass about the spare-tire, but burn to fuel your freshly invigorated body. Thanks, science.

6)

Read. Let’s leave off the Looney Tunes this morning, or if that’s not your style, no newspaper or CNN. Instead, over the oats and bacon, we’re going to read 10 pages (that’s it, easy) of self-help. Are you in the school that thinks self-help books are for a bunch of losers who need to pat themselves on the back? Okay, a lot are, but check outthese self-help books (or for the kleptos). A mere 10 pages a day will amount to 1,300 books over your lifetime. Fun side-note: Theodore Roosevelt read an entire book every single day, even while he had his hands full with all that presidenting.

7)

Take a cold shower. This will be the hardest step to adhere to, but well worth the sacrifice. According to Dr. Kruse, the benefits of becoming “cold adapted” include:

  • Optimization of hormone levels
  • Fertility and reproductive fitness
  • Strengthened adrenal function
  • Reversal of diabetes and thyroid disorders
  • Increased immune function
  • Pain management
  • Deepened and improved sleep
  • Increased sense of well being and better attitude
  • and, it may be helpful with serious neurological diseases and eating disorders

Sounds cool (groan over shitty pun).

8)

Meditate. I’ll bet you’ve heard good things. Here’s your chance, and if you’re afraid of looking silly, no one else is up yet anyway. Here’s a beginners guide if you’re unfamiliar. That’s it. Have fun y’all, and enjoy your new, awesome life.

 

Sources:

WebMD: Stages of Sleep

PubMed.gov: Effects of Interrupting REM sleep

Iso-tone

Science of Isochronic Tones

How Dreams Work

Reasons to Exercise in the Morning

Goodreads: Self-help Books

Cracked.com: Facts About Famous People

Dr. Kruse: Cold Showers

How to Meditate

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