I get up every day at 5:30a. When I mention this most people inevitably say “I could never do that.” Some claim they’d love to do the same, that they’ve tried and failed. Well—I’m here to help.
How It Works
It’s common knowledge that a healthy night’s sleep is around 8 hours long.¹ People use this simple rule when they attempt to wake up earlier. For example, if you want to start getting up at 5:30a, just go to bed tonight at 9:30p, right? Well, yeah—that’s exactly it. But that’s now how it plays out.
Failure occurs in the transition between sleep schedules. If you wake up at, say, 8:00a then you’re likely not going to be tired until close to midnight, which would give you a solid eight hours of sleep. When you switch things up and try to go to bed at 9:30p it’s no wonder you have a hard time falling asleep. Then you start to stress out about not getting enough sleep, which makes it even harder to calm your thoughts and drift away. You see where I’m going with this.
Everyone focuses on the time they need to go to sleep. The trick is to focus on the time you wake up. I know it sounds simple, obvious even. But therein lies the magic.
I’m going to help you get up whenever you want. The following is a simple process for changing your sleep schedule.
- Accept that you’re going to have a couple of tired days.²
- Get up at the time you want to transition to.³
- Go to sleep whenever your body tells you it’s tired.⁴
- Rinse and repeat steps 2 and 3. Effects solidify in 1-3 days.
Over 1-3 days your body will learn to get tired at the appropriate time to account for waking up at whatever time you choose.
Try it, then shoot me a tweet and let me know how it’s going.
1. Varies from person to person. You should know how long you need to sleep. My perfect night’s sleep lasts roughly 7h 45m.
2. This is key. The vast majority of people give up when they can’t fall asleep at the corresponding time to get up early eight hours later.
3. Remember—you will be tired, because you got less than eight hours the night before. I can’t emphasize this enough.
4. On the first day it will vary from person to person.