Lessons from a Man Who Learned to Wake Up at 4:30 am
A motivational story for those who want to get up early, but still cannot. We want you to read the story of Filipe Castro Matos, who has learned to wake up at 4:30 am in 21 days.
On April 2, I gave myself a new challenge. The task was simple: I had to wake up at 4:30 am for 21 workdays. I used to wake up early (at 6 am almost every day), but this time I wanted to go even further. I wanted to test myself and find out my limit.
And at the same time, I wanted to share my achievements with other people so that they could follow my example. I also wanted to refute some of the false beliefs that society blindly follows.
I have decided to observe such a regime only on working days because weekends and holidays are a separate topic. Sometimes I do not have enough time to finish some work during the working days, so I have to postpone them to Saturday and Sunday, but mostly the weekend is time for fun and parties.
Yes, of course, I could observe such a regime every day, but in that case, I would break my life balance. Since I planned to continue to wake up at 4 30 am after 21 days, it could have become a real torture, not an advantage.
Why exactly 21 days?
Well, I relied on the old idea of Dr. Maxwell Moltz, who claimed that in order to form new habits, you need exactly 21 days. I did not know whether it really worked, I just needed to set a goal.
I have one rule that I try to adhere to: always set a specific goal, because only in this way can you understand whether you have succeeded or failed to achieve what you wanted.
What was the ultimate goal of all this? Increase productivity. I wanted to make the most of each day. I always think about how to improve my work, how to improve my life, and I like to think about all the details and take measures that will help me to achieve what I want.
I always knew that I was a lark, and my goal was to get up even earlier to see if that would increase my productivity.
So, what did I find out during this time?
1. If you want to change something in life, you need support.
This will help you not to get out of the intended path when you have (and it will certainly appear) a desire to quit everything. I decided to share my observations with friends and acquaintances on Facebook. I knew that I needed to tell someone about it because this is an additional incentive to move towards the intended goal.
When people learn about your new habit, they will be interested, they will ask questions. The most useful thing is that you will be afraid of showing your weakness, and this alone is enough not to quit.
2. People are attentive to the details.
Some people consider such early wake up not normal, so I have had to actively defend my position in the comments. People were worried about me. They asked a lot of questions. And at the same time, they believed that they themselves would never be able to get up at this time.
3. People do not want to wake up earlier because they think they will sleep less.
I knew very well how long my body needs to sleep. And since I changed the time of my awakening, it was also necessary to change the time at which I go to bed. For me, it was easy. To get enough sleep, I need 6-7 hours. So, I was not going to sleep less.
So if the time is 9:30 or 10:00 pm, then I know it’s time for me to go to bed. To my surprise, most of the people who asked me when I was sleeping, in fact, slept much less than I did. And I began to get enough sleep much better than before.
4. Remove obstacles you will encounter.
People like to say that it is impossible to do this. Yes, of course, there are certain circumstances that can become an obstacle. But I think that many people are simply lazy and do not want to put extra effort to improve their lives. They just go with the flow.
Yes, maybe it is easy for me to speak because I had the right conditions: I am not married, I have no children, my life belongs only to me. But, on the other hand, much depends on my desire and motivation.
Think about everything that prevents you from achieving your desired goal.
This includes a desire to quit smoking, start going to the gym or, let`s say, eating more fruits and vegetables. How to get rid of all the obstacles that prevent you from reaching your goal?
I usually work in startups, which means that I have a free and flexible schedule, that is why I can start working at 4:30 in the morning. Such a schedule allows me to return home earlier. In addition, no one depends on me, and I do not depend on anyone.
5. Your physical condition will greatly help you.
If we talk about sleeping, then I am very lucky. I fall asleep very quickly (on average, it takes me 5 minutes). I sleep well (I rarely wake up at night). There are no problems with awakening: I get up right away after the alarm signal.
Of course, this is a consequence of my lifestyle: I eat well, I play sports every day, there are no constant and global concerns in my life. And I believe that most people, too, can wake up earlier if they decide to change their lifestyle.
6. Forget the phrase "Another 10 minutes".
If you want to wake up at a certain time, then please forget about this phrase “well, another 10 minutes”. This will seriously affect your day: you will not sleep during these 10 minutes, besides you will feel tired.
7. I like to sleep, but my body needs only 6-7 hours to sleep.
After 6–7 hours of sleep, I can no longer sleep but just toss and turn in bed. It is better to get up and do something interesting and useful.
8. More time left to work.
After I have started waking up at 4:30 in the morning, I have extra two hours that I could devote to work. How? As I said above, I am a lark and after 6 pm I cannot do anything particularly important, my productivity falls already in the afternoon.
So these two evening hours, which I uselessly spend on the Internet, I have transferred to the morning and devoted to work. Now I could finish work earlier and have a rest exactly when it is necessary.
10. There is more time for training.
I used to go to the gym before I have decided to get up early. But since I had started waking up at 4:30 in the morning, I decided to add another workout a week. Now I need 4–5 workouts.
11. New worldview.
My early awakenings allow me to notice those details in the surrounding world which I have hardly paid attention to before. 12. And of course, willpower is needed to rebuild your daily routine.If you have no willpower, then it is more than likely that you will quit. Train your willpower, learn to achieve what you want.