A Night Owl's Guide To Waking Up Early

A Night Owl's Guide To Waking Up Early

How to get yourself up early in the morning if you are a night person.
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I am a natural night owl born and bred. It has always been natural for me to stay up until 2 or 3 am, only to be shaken awake in the morning before noon. I love my bed, and I often spend time there for as long as possible.

With the burden of being a college athlete and a full-time student, practices are conveniently placed at 5 in the MORNING! This means my alarm usually goes off at 4:30 am. 4:34 am. 4:36 am. 4:40 am. and 4:45 am. I have perfected the art of going to sleep in my workout gear and getting ready in 7 min to ensure I can sleep in as long as possible.

This isn't the best or smartest way to go about getting up in the morning. So I've done some trial and error on the best ways to get up in the early morning and how to help keep your inner night owl under control

1. Drink Water!

Before you go to sleep, drink water. When you wake up right away, drink water. Feeling that midday snooze, drink water. There are so many benefits to water, and we should take full advantage.

I have come the the conclusion that if I drink a bunch of water before going to sleep, when I wake up in the morning, I'll have to pee so bad that I'll be forced to waking up and getting out of bed. Plus once I'm up and have gone to the bathroom, if I drink more water, I feel refreshed and more willing to start my day. There are so many benefits to drinking water, especially with staying awake and and being attentive. Drink water. Just do it. Okay?!



2. Completely Prepare Yourself for the Day Ahead

One of the best parts about being habitually nocturnal is getting to cozy up in bed and watch Netflix or read, but fight the beckoning call to bed, and get your shit together. What ever your early morning brings, chances are it requires some extend of preparedness i.e. clothing, makeup, breakfast. Get all your things ready for tomorrow the night before while you are still wide awake, then cozy up in bed.

Chances are you will wear yourself out and make it easier to fall asleep, too. Pack your lunch, set out your clothes, print all materials you need for class. If you are going to workout, make a water bottle and already put protein powder in your Blender Bottle for convenience later. The more you can get done the night before, the easier it will be to wake up in the morning, while capitalizing on a few extra minutes of ZZZ's.



3. Say Goodnight to Social Media

Along with the 21st century emerged the addiction to social media. I love social media, so much that I sleep with it every night. Being a night owl adds another little perk to this addiction because everyone you would physically socialize with, has gone to sleep. Now you're scouring through America's Got Talent videos on Facebook or swiping and talking to the only people who are up this late at night on Tinder. Hashtag booty call? Hashtag thirsty?

There is some compromise with falling asleep with social media: give it a bed time. How late I stay up on any given night varies by the amount of fun I'm having from the glowing screen, but your devices deserve to go to sleep, like the rest of us! Set an alarm for 15 min before you want to fall asleep overnight, and try and keep it consistent during the weekdays. My phone's bedtime is 11pm. I have no trouble falling asleep soon after I shut off the bright screen, and neither will you.

However, some nights I lay restless even after and I toss and turn over analyzing everything. Take this time to reflect. Think about a mantra you can tell yourself when you go to sleep, as well as one to help you get ready in the morning. At night I always recite to myself, "Have the power to accept the things you cannot change, change the things you cannot accept, and the knowledge to know the difference." This tells me that what ever happened today, I cannot change, and I will get a fresh start in the morning. Then, while I brush my teeth and wash my face in the morning, I pay homage to Pr. Barack Obama with the mantra "Fired up! Ready to GO!" This really gets me pumped and ready to conquer the day. Find something to tell yourself to set the tone for your sleep the night before. Or you could always sing your iPhone a lullaby.


4. Change Your Alarm

The human body is smart. So smart in fact that it can become accustomed to ignoring frequent sounds, like the fan or your dad snoring down the hall. Eventually your alarm will be added to the list of the brain's "please Ignore" list whether the time it goes off or the sound it makes. Change the time of your alarms by three-ish minute increments, but do not set them too late.

Also change the sound that will be awaking you from slumber. I usually pick a song or something really obnoxious. Currently I wake up to "Trumpets" by Jason Derulo, but my other alarms have the typical alarm sound and bird chirping to really get my conscience flowing. It doesn't really matter what you change it to, but you should definitely mix it up when waking up. Side note: when picking a song, find something upbeat and positive because ain't nobody wanna wake up to I hate world music.

These are just a few fool proof ideas to help get your booty to sleep at a decent time and awake at a great time: the butt crack of dawn.

Cover Image Credit: Guo Guiyan

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To The Friends I Won't Talk To After High School

I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.
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Hey,

So, for the last four years I’ve seen you almost everyday. I’ve learned about your annoying little brother, your dogs and your crazy weekend stories. I’ve seen you rock the awful freshman year fashion, date, attend homecoming, study for AP tests, and get accepted into college.

Thank you for asking me about my day, filling me in on your boy drama and giving me the World History homework. Thank you for complimenting my outfits, laughing at me presenting in class and listening to me complain about my parents. Thank you for sending me your Quizlets and being excited for my accomplishments- every single one of them. I appreciate it all because I know that soon I won’t really see you again. And that makes me sad. I’ll no longer see your face every Monday morning, wave hello to you in the hallways or eat lunch with you ever again. We won't live in the same city and sooner or later you might even forget my name.

We didn’t hang out after school but none the less you impacted me in a huge way. You supported my passions, stood up for me and made me laugh. You gave me advice on life the way you saw it and you didn’t have to but you did. I think maybe in just the smallest way, you influenced me. You made me believe that there’s lots of good people in this world that are nice just because they can be. You were real with me and that's all I can really ask for. We were never in the same friend group or got together on the weekends but you were still a good friend to me. You saw me grow up before your eyes and watched me walk into class late with Starbucks every day. I think people like you don’t get enough credit because I might not talk to you after high school but you are still so important to me. So thanks.

With that said, I truly hope that our paths cross one day in the future. You can tell me about how your brothers doing or how you regret the college you picked. Or maybe one day I’ll see you in the grocery store with a ring on your finger and I’ll be so happy you finally got what you deserved so many guys ago.

And if we ever do cross paths, I sincerely hope you became everything you wanted to be. I hope you traveled to Italy, got your dream job and found the love of your life. I hope you have beautiful children and a fluffy dog named Charlie. I hope you found success in love before wealth and I hope you depended on yourself for happiness before anything else. I hope you visited your mom in college and I hope you hugged your little sister every chance you got. She’s in high school now and you always tell her how that was the time of your life. I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.

And hey, maybe I’ll see you at the reunion and maybe just maybe you’ll remember my face. If so, I’d like to catch up, coffee?

Sincerely,

Me

Cover Image Credit: High school Musical

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Buying New Clothes Every Month Has Been The Key To Helping Me Become Happy With My Body Again

Loving my body in new outfits has boosted my self image so much.

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Being body-positive has been really hard for me to do throughout 2019, despite there being an overwhelming surge in body-positivity around me, whether through my friends and family or YouTube. I look in the mirror and what I see is someone I want to make a jean size or two smaller like in the past. That being said, I've slowly been coming around to accepting the body I have now, instead of bashing it constantly. A key way I've come to accept the body I'm in now is through buying myself something new every month, like a new T-shirt or a pair of jeans or sneakers that help me see myself in a positive light. When I'm in a new outfit, I feel invincible. I don't think about how pudgy my stomach is, or about the hair I have growing in random places, like my neck or on my nose (yes, not just in, but ON too).

My bank account tends to suffer as of recently because of this, but it's worth it when I can genuinely feel good in what I am wearing every day. I like to wake up and think about how many outfits I can put together, ready to post my #OOTD for Snapchat without caring what anyone thinks. I've let social media dictate how I feel about myself more than I care to admit. I see how perfect all the models are in everything they're wearing from brands I know and love, yet when I try the same thing on, it's a whole different ugly story.

I don't enjoy trying things on to avoid the shame I feel when things don't fit me right, or if something that I thought would flatter me actually makes me look like a sack of potatoes. Instagram has really hurt my body image a lot — enough to make me delete it for a week after one post sent me spiraling. Going through those bumps made me finally realize it's not my fault if something doesn't fit. Sizes range depending on the item, it's the clothing items fault, not mine. Now that I see that, it's easier to brush off something not fitting me as it should. I know my size very well in the stores I frequent the most, so it's easier for me to pick out things I know will look good and not have to worry about the sizing issue.

Buying yourself something new is not something you should limit to every few months or longer. You shouldn't be afraid to go out of your comfort zone price wise every once and a while either. Coupons exist, stories always offer you them when you first sign up to receive emails and even texts. You can be crafty and still get a high price item for less. If you treat yourself to cheap things, you won't feel half as good as you want to. Granted, sticking to a limit is important but there's no shame in going over the limit every once and a while.

I love shopping as much as I love country music and writing short stories — a lot. Yes, I get yelled at almost every time I get something new. I need to save my money for important things, like for my sorority or for medical issues that could suddenly arise, or for utilities at my house next year off campus.

However, my mental well-being is not something I can ignore.

I can't push the good feelings aside to save 30 or 40 bucks a month. I don't want to feel as low as I've felt about myself anymore. I'm tired of feeling sad or angry at who I am, and I want to learn how to accept myself as I am. Buying myself something new, like clothes, is what offers a positive light to view myself under.

Whether you treat yourself to dinner at your favorite restaurant, or to face masks, or to a new movie when it comes out — don't be afraid to do it. Put yourself first and you'll realize your worth and how much you've been ignoring it in the face of poor confidence.

My confidence isn't back up to where it used to be, but it's getting there.

It may not be the most cash efficient method of self-love, but my body positivity is better than it was a few months ago. Aerie and American Eagle have really helped me become happier with my body, and I can't thank them enough for being more inclusive for people like me who are learning to love themselves again in a new body.

There is a light at the end of the tunnel for all of us hoping to promote our own body positivity, and it could all start with a simple purchase from your favorite store after you read this.

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