We all know we shouldn't hit the snooze button, but it's just so tempting, because well, mornings. ;) What's the first thing you do when you wake up? How many of these are you guilty of doing?
(by Kelly Hernandez of Eat This Not That)
Implementing proper "waking up" strategies and developing a positive morning routine could make you more productive, lower your stress levels, contribute to good health and a strong immune system, according to Northwestern Medicine.
Check out these five things you should never do when you first wake up to set yourself up for a great day…
1. Hit the Snooze Button
A few more minutes in bed is always tempting but that snooze button can do more harm than good. The sleep you get in the five to ten minutes of snoozing isn't restorative and may make you even groggier.
"Much of the latter part of our sleep cycle consists of REM sleep, or dream sleep, which is a restorative sleep state. And so, if you're hitting the snooze button, then you're disrupting that REM sleep or dream sleep," according to Dr. Reena Mehra, M.D., M.S. from Cleveland Clinic. Set your alarm for a realistic time and avoid hitting snooze to ensure you feel refreshed waking up.
2. Stay Curled in a Ball
If your sleeping habits include curling into a tight little ball, be sure you stretch out wide as soon as you wake up. If you stay in the fetal position after waking up or remain in your tightly curled ball, you could be setting yourself up for an unsuccessful day.
A study conducted by Dr. Amy J.C. Cuddy, P.H.D, from Harvard concluded that people who slept curled up and remained in this position after waking had lower confidence levels. "If you wake up in a fetal position, you're waking up on the wrong side of the bed," Dr. Cuddy says. Set your day up for success by stretching out wide and tall as soon as your eyes open.
3. Check Your Emails
Sleep Advisor polled 1,000 Americans and found that 17% of them check their email on their smartphone first thing in the morning. While it may feel like you're getting a jump on your day by grabbing your smartphone, it can actually be detrimental to your happiness and may raise your stress level.
A study conducted by the University of British Columbia limited 124 professionals to only checking their email and smartphone notifications sparingly. When study participants got used to this new email checking schedule, they reported feeling less stressed and more in control of their day. Even if your first thought is all the emails you've missed as your eyes flutter open, give yourself time to wake up before checking your phone.
4. Chug Coffee
For many, coffee is the motivator to get out of bed in the first place. But if you're an early riser, it may be best for you to wait before you brew a pot of joe. The caffeine in your favorite morning beverage is known to interfere with your body's cortisol production. With caffeine in your system, your body may produce less cortisol, a hormone that's released as a stress response and when your blood glucose levels dip.
Your body naturally experiences three spikes in cortisol each day, according to a study published in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. Drinking coffee before 10 a.m. could make the caffeine ineffective and mess with your body's cortisol production. It's best to wait for that first sip until after the early morning hours.
5. Stay in Bed
Your bed should be your sanctuary, dedicated only to sleep. If you wake up in the morning and hang out in bed for a while, you could be confusing the connection your brain has to your bed. "As soon as you wake up after a night of sleep, you should get out of bed. If you lie awake in bed, your brain links being awake to being in bed," according to Professor Matthew Walker from University of California Berkeley.
When you lay in bed, you may find it harder to fall asleep in the future. If you still feel like lounging after you wake up, relocate to your favorite chair or the couch. This ensures your brain still connects your bed solely to sleep.