10 things you can do to stay in bed longer tomorrow

Frank Hutton

I read an article last month which incensed me. It was entitled “15 things you can do today to get up earlier tomorrow”. Initially, it was  because I thought that it promoted the “hit the day early and you’ll be more successful” approach. However, on reading it, it was more practical than that, ostensibly encouraging us to break bad habits e.g. arriving late for work. Perhaps it should have been entitled “15 things you can do today so you will get up tomorrow”.

Photo by Cris Saur on Unsplash

Photo by Cris Saur on Unsplash

Many of us were brought up on the maxim: “Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man (or woman!) healthy, wealthy and wise.” I’m good with that on the grounds that it promotes healthy levels of sleep, which is sadly lacking for so many. However, getting up earlier is not necessarily a key to success.

So in the spirit of keeping it real, I thought I would create a positional piece to balance this out: “10 things you can do to stay in bed longer tomorrow and still arrive at work on time”. See, it sounds more attractive already, doesn’t it? Choose any or all for real impact:

1. Plan and don’t cram too much in

By adopting a more planned lifestyle, you can anticipate peaks and troughs. Trying to cram too many last minute things into any day can throw you off course, especially if you leave them to the last minute. Instead, plan ahead, put things to do into your diary, and get them done the night or day before. Don’t leave them until the morning you need to have completed them.

2. Leave notes or a list for the morning

There are some things you need to do the next day or remember to pick up. My brain seems to erase itself overnight some days, so I find making a list of things to remember to do the next day (if I can’t do them before) is a simple way of being able to relax, sleep well and still not forget anything the next day.

3. Lay your clothes out

This is simple but powerful. Make the choice about what you want or need to wear the next day the night before. Not only are you more awake and able to complete the task more quickly but it brings two other advantages: it makes you think about and remember what’s coming up so you don’t have any last minute panics on other items needed, and secondly you can discover, before you have to go out the door, that the shirt you wanted to wear needs ironing.

4. Get the breakfast things out on the table

Surely this takes no time? Well, for most of us, probably not a lot but again you move slower most likely in the morning, and its one less thing to take up valuable brain space when it’s in short supply first thing. If you don’t currently eat breakfast, try it for a more effective day.

5. Wash your hair in the evening

Some of us need longer to sort our hair than others. Unless you wash it every day (I don’t) http://uk.businessinsider.com/how-often-you-should-wash-your-hair-2016-6... - then consider doing it the night before. You can sit and relax and watch telly while it dries or having a relaxing time pampering yourself in the bath/shower and after, getting you nice and relaxed before bedtime.

6. Prepare tomorrow’s lunch and/or evening meal tonight

Lunch prep saves time AND money. Try it, if only a couple of times week. It will save you enough for a holiday. Do it the night before when you are also prepping the following day’s evening meal in, say, a slow cooker then you have a double win - saving even more cash and saving time on clearing up and cleaning the kitchen. You then come home to a great meal in a clean kitchen. Much more restorative than having to battle to sort it when you get home tired, ratty and clueless as to what to eat. You can see why so many pick up a ready meal or take away on the way home. Don’t let it be you losing time and money.

7. Put the bin out the night before

Another quick move that saves time and getting goo on your best frock as you march a bin bag out or the recycling to the front of the house.

8. Delay responding to social media

Yes, you heard me. Look briefly when you get up if you have to, but otherwise deal with it in one spell, once you are on the train or bus, or when you get to work, over a coffee as you have had time to get there early through all the special preparations you’ve made or at lunchtime, because your new home prepped lunch means you don’t have to queue up at the sandwich shop for hours.

9. Get the relevant things in position - keys, bag, wallet, glasses.

Making a smooth and rapid exit from your abode is part of making a good start to your day. Get everything in place to pick up as you go, shoes by the door, keys on the table and handbag at the ready next to them plus whatever else you need. Having them in the same place each day will help you not to forget anything and helps keep your mind free and relaxed.

10. Go to bed earlier

OK, doesn’t this defeat the object? No, the object of all these actions is create more time to stay in bed longer not later - so you can sleep as long as you need, and have time to enjoy the waking up process, slowly and naturally, rather than being thrust from the safety of the warmth and cosiness of your cot into the seeming harshness outside. Also, having a routine where you can enjoy some time to read, relax or listen to music (not use blue-light devices!) prior to switching off the lights will actually help you sleep so that the next day you will be sharper and more energetic when you do arise. 30 minutes will do it. Get enough sleep. You need it and deserve it.