Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo

5 Tips to *Actually* Help You Wake Up Earlier

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Toronto MU chapter.

Recently, I’ve become more of a morning person.

Let me be clear—I don’t inherently take pleasure in leaving the comfort of my bed before the sun is even up. However, I have found some enjoyment in getting up a few hours earlier than I used to. It’s refreshing to know that I’ve maximized my time throughout the day so I’m able to relax more during the night. 

Waking up early isn’t easy. It’s obvious that you need to fall asleep earlier to get up earlier—but getting a good night’s sleep doesn’t directly translate into climbing out of the covers with ease. So, here are five unique tips that have helped motivate me to actually do so (other than excessively setting alarms). 

1. Write out a to-do list the night before

Before you go to bed at night, try listing out the following day’s to-dos on paper. As a bonus, I find it extremely helpful when I schedule my tasks for specific times in the morning. Google Calendar is my best friend, and I time block everything on there. It’s not set in stone, but in my mind, I’m getting up early for a purpose; from 7:00 a.m to 8:00 a.m is the time I’ve given myself to write my English essay. Even though I don’t necessarily need to cross off everything on my list within the morning, it helps when I plan to do so. 

2. Make plans to get out of the house

Making plans doesn’t mean you need to meet your best friend on campus at 6 a.m. for a study session. Instead, I try to mentally prepare myself for the day by planning to leave the house, whether that’s going to the gym, going on a walk, or going to Starbucks. I’m not exactly bound to follow through with the plans—and there have been many times when I’ve bailed on myself—but it encourages me to get out of bed because I’m not immediately starting my day at my desk. 

3. Plan your outfit for the next day

Planning out what you’re going to wear the next day can make waking up a little bit easier because your clothes are already waiting for you, knocking down one—arguably quite stressful—task. By changing out of your sleep attire immediately, you’ll be less likely to crawl back into your sheets. If I’m planning on completing an early workout, I’ll always lay out my tank top and leggings before crawling into bed at night. It’s a lot more motivating when I know I’m already prepared to get going. 

4. Document your day on camera!!!

As ridiculous as this one sounds, it definitely works. Think about it—people tend to only share the best version of themselves with others, so by documenting a day in your life, you’re more likely to be more productive (and wake up earlier). This doesn’t mean you need to create a full-on Youtube production for your 5 a.m. morning routine—although you could if you wanted to—but you can film a quick TikTok vlog, share a few snaps on your private story, or simply send your best friend a photo of your morning coffee. I’ve done all of these before, and I can attest that it always motivates me to get out of bed earlier. 

5. Cut yourself some slack

Lastly, it’s important to ease yourself through the process. If you typically get out of bed at noon, try setting your alarm for 10 a.m., instead of jumping to 6 a.m. right away. There have been times when I forced myself to wake up hours earlier than usual (without going to bed earlier), only to completely crash when the afternoon hit. Don’t be too hard on yourself—if you hit snooze a few too many times today, tomorrow is another day to try again.

Her Campus Placeholder Avatar
Jessica Ho

Toronto MU '24