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How to Become a Morning Person: Tips for Early Rise Success

How to Become a Morning Person: Tips for Early Rise Success

good morning rooster crowing and sunshine gif

Shifting from night owl to early bird can feel like a Herculean task. But here’s some good news – how to become a morning person isn’t shrouded in mystery, it’s rooted in science and strategy.

You might think your late-night Netflix binges are the culprit keeping you from catching those sunrises. It turns out your genes play quite a role too.

So what happens when you decide enough is enough and you want to learn how to become a morning person? Or even if you just hope to seamlessly make the shift from Standard Time to Daylight Time?

This journey unfolds with small steps – setting consistent wake times, improving sleep hygiene, and making friends with that snooze-button-less alarm clock that could show you how to become a morning person.

 And make that yearly transition to Daylight Time next week.

Table Of Contents:

The Genetic and Environmental Factors Influencing Morning People and Night Owls

Have you wondered why some folks spring out of bed with the sunrise while others hit their stride when the stars come out? It’s not just personal preference—it’s science.

Your natural tendency to be a morning person or a night owl is woven into your DNA, thanks to a small collection of genes that play DJ for your internal clock. Nevertheless, you can learn how to become a morning person despite your genetic tendencies.

The Science Behind Early Birds and Night Owls

Your body clock, also known as circadian rhythm, is like an invisible conductor orchestrating the symphony of hormones dictating sleepiness and alertness. 

For early birds, this means peak performance happens in daylight hours. Meanwhile, night owls stay alert later into the night.

But it’s not all genetics; environmental factors influence these rhythms too. The sun plays its part: exposure to sunlight can either kickstart or delay our body clocks—a reason why we feel jet-lagged after crossing time zones. 

Or foggy after the time change.

annual sunshine hours map

How Geography and Age Affect Your Sleep Schedule

How to become a morning person isn’t just about willpower; geographical location throws its hat in the ring too. 

Depending on where you live—the northern woods of Canada versus sunny California—you might experience shifts in your sleep schedule due to varying lengths of day and night throughout the year.

Youth may bring energy but age brings wisdom—and often earlier wake times. As we get older, our bodies naturally tend toward earlier sleeping patterns which can mean those late-night Netflix binges start feeling less appealing over time. 

So when you hear your grandparents talk about getting up and being spunky at 4 am, this is a contributing factor. 

How to Become a Morning Person, Even If You Weren’t Born That Way

So, you want to catch the worm and join the early birds? It’s no secret that waking up with—or even before—the sun has its perks. But if your current rhythm is more night owl than chirpy thrush, shifting gears can feel like a tall order. 

Don’t worry; we’ve got some science-backed strategies on how to become a morning person without throwing off your internal clock. 

The Gradual Shift to Morning Glory

Making peace with your alarm clock each morning involves tweaking bedtime rituals gradually. Going cold turkey from midnight marathons to 9 PM shuteye would leave anyone cranky. 

The trick lies in baby steps: shifting bedtime by 15 minutes every few nights lets your body adjust without rebelling against sudden change.

Start by setting a target wake-up time and work backward from there. Go to bed 15 minutes earlier each night until you hit the sweet spot where eight hours of shut-eye meets sunrise salutations. 

This consistent bedtime routine not only helps you fall asleep faster but also solidifies quality rest so you can rise feeling refreshed.

💡Key Takeaway: 

Your inner clock, guided by genes and the sun’s rays, decides if you’re an early bird or night owl. But it’s not set in stone—habits and age can shift your sleep patterns towards morning light.

Embrace gradual changes to bedtime for a smoother transition to waking up earlier without the crankiness.

Setting Consistent Wake Times for Better Mornings

Keeping a steady morning routine teaches our bodies when it’s time to start winding down at night and pep up in the morning. In fact, your morning routine largely dictates whether you’re ready to sleep at bedtime. 

It is very important to get out in the sunshine as early as possible in the day (yes, even on a cloudy day!) to help set your circadian rhythm earlier. 

Maintaining this regularity reinforces our circadian rhythms—and stabilizes energy levels throughout the day. So while hitting snooze might be tempting, resist that call. 

A set wake-up call reduces groggy feelings upon rising and strengthens mental health over time due to better-regulated hormones influenced by sleep cycles.

Woman Waking up in the Morning, Stretches in the Bed, Sun Shines on Her From the Big Window.

Harnessing Natural Light for Better Mornings

A little sunshine does more than boost moods—it kickstarts our inner alarms thanks in part to blue light triggering alertness within us upon exposure. It sends signals directly influencing circadian rhythms keeping us perky during daylight hours. 

Before electricity’s widespread adoption people woke naturally with dawn. 

You can buy alarm clocks that wake you with light, instead of noise.

You can also take a brisk walk outdoors to soak up the rays

Of course, winter months’ short days pose challenges, but therapy lamps may be the answer. These handy devices simulate sunlight, helping shift nocturnal tendencies towards bright-eyed bushy-tailed mornings.

💡Key Takeaway: 

To morph into a morning person, gradually shift your bedtime earlier and wake up earlier. 

Once you shift, keep wake times the same every day, even on weekends. Let natural light be your alarm and maintain sleep hygiene for faster dozing off.

The Impact of Light on Your Sleep-Wake Cycle

Ever noticed how a blast of morning light can feel like a shot of espresso to your system? 

That’s because our bodies are tuned into the day-night cycle, with natural light playing the lead guitar. The sun’s rays help reset our internal clocks every day, telling us when it’s time to wake up and get moving. 

A key tip on how to become a morning person: sunlight is your best ally.

Our inner clock is super sensitive to changes in light. 

Soak up some bright morning light as soon as possible after waking. This exposure sends signals directly from your eyes to your brain saying “Hey there, It’s go-time!” 

The sunlight helps suppress melatonin (the sleep hormone) production and kickstarts cortisol (a stress hormone that gets us going). 

Think about it; before modern life tucked us indoors, humans rose with the dawn. Mimicking this by stepping outside or opening those curtains wide could be just what you need for better energy levels throughout the day. 

And of those options, getting outside where the sun can directly hit your eyeballs is the better option.

If clouds put a damper on your sunshine or if winter has shortened daylight hours where you live—no worries. Even on overcast days, outdoor light still packs far more punch than indoor lighting at home or work. 

But if getting real sunlight isn’t an option first thing in the morning, consider investing in a therapy lamp designed specifically to mimic the effects of naturally occurring luminosity outdoors.

Woman using a light therapy lamp

Light Therapy for Night Owls

Fellow creatures of the night rejoice: even though genetics may have hardwired some moonlight preferences into us, science gives us tools to change tunes. I’m talking about using an artificial but brilliant invention called light therapy lamps.

A solid dose from these devices during times when you would typically see peak brightness outside could convince stubborn circadian rhythms they’ve got their PMs and AMs mixed up. 

It basically tricks them to shuffle along the timeline to suit your needs rather than the other way around. And that might mean less grogginess and less hitting the snooze button repeatedly each morning. 

According to Dr. Britney Blair, while blue light can keep us alert and awake, a sunset’s warm glow does the opposite by encouraging relaxation and sleepiness as night falls.

💡Key Takeaway: 

To kickstart your morning energy, embrace the sunlight or a therapy lamp. They reset our internal clocks and tell our brains it’s time to rise, helping you shift from night owl to early bird.

Creating an Effective Bedtime Routine

Imagine a world where your brain knows exactly when to shift into sleep mode, as smoothly as a car glides into its parking spot at the end of a long day. That’s what an effective bedtime routine can do for you.

A solid nighttime ritual is like whispering sweet nothings to your mind and body, coaxing them towards dreamland. You wouldn’t run a marathon without some warm-up stretches. 

Similarly, driving straight from high-energy evening activities into bed doesn’t give your system the cue that it’s time to slow down.

The Role of Sleep Hygiene in Falling Asleep Faster and Sleeping Longer

By cultivating good sleep hygiene practices, you’re giving yourself permission to fall asleep faster and enjoy better quality rest.

To make this happen, we’ve got to talk tactics:

  • Cut back on screen time: Those pesky blue lights from screens are notorious for trickling caffeine-like signals right into our brains, even if it is 11:00 at night. Ditch screens for the last 2-3 hours before bedtime.
  • Sip something soothing: A cup of herbal tea might just be the elixir you need to unwind. Some people swear by warm milk. Or a high-magnesium drink. Whatever works for you.
  • Create calmness around you: Whether it’s through meditation or reading a calming book, finding peace before hitting the pillow is key. And no on-screen books. 
  • Skip the alcohol: It’s a well-established fact that alcohol can disrupt your sleep. So if you want to avoid the 3:00 am tossing and turning, skip the cocktails. 
  • Dress your windows: Black-out shades keep the outside streetlights and moonlight out of your bedroom. Your eyelids are shockingly thin and let light through to your eyes more readily than you think. You may need some tape or a clothespin to keep them tight. 

Beyond these steps lies one mighty game-changer: consistency. 

Turns out that sticking with a consistent sleep schedule does wonders for training your internal clock—a boon considering how much good sleep impacts everything from mood swings to mental sharpness.

Handsome young man reading book in dark room at night. Bedtime

Tips To Keep Your Bedtime Routine On Track

We all have nights where our best-laid plans go awry because life loves throwing curveballs now and then—but don’t fret. Here are some tried-and-true tips for maintaining that bedtime routine even when times get tough:

  • Ditch late-night snacks: Eating too close to bedtime could turn digestion into an unwanted nightmare keeping us up.
  • Rethink nap lengths: While short power naps can be refreshing, if they start turning into marathons they might steal precious hours from nighttime slumber parties with our pillows.
  • Skip the alcohol: And remember… evening cocktails can lead to middle-of-the-night wakefulness. 
  • Read something calming at bedtime. But not on a screen. 😊

💡Key Takeaway: 

Train your brain for bedtime by crafting a routine that whispers “sleep time” to your body, much like stretching tells muscles it’s run time. 

Cut the screen glare, sip some tea, and find calming peace to tell your mind it’s time to wind down.

Even when life throws a curveball at night, stick with the sleep plan. Skip late snacks and keep naps short so you can hit the pillow ready for quality dreamtime every single night.


So, you’ve learned the ropes. How to become a morning person starts within your DNA… but doesn’t end there. Geography, age, and intentionality play roles too. The older you get, the earlier you tend to go to bed.

Start small; shift your bedtime gradually and stick to consistent wake times. This simple change is powerful—it tells your body when it’s time for shut-eye.

Leverage light wisely; bask in the morning sun or use a therapy lamp to cue your inner clock. Nighttime? Dim those lights down low an hour or so before bedtime.

Create an evening ritual that whispers ‘sleep’ to your brain, ensuring each night leads you closer to morning success.

Remember: It’s about syncing with natural rhythms, staying steady on course, and embracing bright mornings as allies in health and energy boosts—because they truly are!



How to Become a Morning Person: Tips for Early Rise Success

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