How I Get Up At 5:30 AM Every Day

February 29, 2012

One of the things that I have been enjoying is getting up earlier on a more consistent basis. For me, this is 5:30 AM. This really helps me get my day started in the right direction.

I have time to stretch, listen to instructional material, read my Bible, shower, and get ready for the day, all before breakfast.

In the process of doing this, I’ve realized that I need to plan ahead and set myself up for success in order for me to do this on a consistent basis.

It sounds like common sense, I know. But I’ve noticed it really boils down to being disciplined and working backwards towards the goal of getting up earlier.

Here’s how working backwards looks for me:

5. Make time for Claudia and I to connect before late in the evening. This must be made a priority. There are alway “urgent” matters and this gets pushed aside unless it’s seen as important.

4. Finish my writing before the evening. This is the most common thing that will keep me from doing steps 3, 2, and, ultimately, 1 for me.

3. Stop doing nonessentials by 9:30 PM. This is a challenge sometimes because it’s easy to get carried away with reading other blogs and messing with website stuff.

2. Get to bed by 10 PM. This is where the rubber meets the road. If I don’t do this, a vicious cycle begins and I’ll be tired and won’t perform steps 5-3 well the next day.

1. Get up at 5:30 AM. The goal. Now, to do it all over again!

Question: What time do you get up and how do you do it?

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  • Reply Char February 29, 2012 at 10:54 pm

    5am. However, getting to bed on time is the tough part….like why am I on the computer right now at 10:30pm??!! I am in the middle of defining my schedule for 2012. I am scheduling a typical week . Time is allotted for work, family, home management, brain rest, social media, exercise, education, strategic planning;), and read time. I find if I can have a time set apart for things…I am controlling my time. Which helps me avoid always feeling like I am running behind.

    • Reply Michael Good March 1, 2012 at 8:34 am

      I love that you’re doing this! I think it’s so powerful to think through those things and plan them out. I love the energy and enthusiasm that you exude!

  • Reply Justin Lukasavige March 1, 2012 at 8:20 am

    Wow, it’s like looking into my life. Glad you’re doing this, Michael. It’s completely changed me.

    • Reply Michael Good March 1, 2012 at 8:32 am

      You talking about how you do this on some of your shows has inspired me to take action. So, I owe you a thank you!

      • Reply Justin Lukasavige March 1, 2012 at 9:03 am

        Glad to know I’m not alone. I’ve been doing it for over a year now, and it just feels wrong to sleep later.

  • Reply Ann J Musico March 1, 2012 at 8:52 am

    Great post, Michael. I actually get up at 4 am – have been since my kids were small. I do get to bed by 8:30 or 9 most nights in order to be able to do that and I have never used an alarm clock. I started years ago just asking the Lord to wake me up at that time – and He does! Now my body is so used to it that even on the weekend when I don’t have to be up that early, I still wake up then – but I go back to sleep. I don’t feel right when I occasionally oversleep and don’t have that quiet time with the Lord and can begin my day quietly and peacefully.

    • Reply Michael Good March 1, 2012 at 9:24 am

      Wow, Ann. That’s early! But, as long as you get to bed early, I guess it doesn’t make a difference with your sleep. Those first few hours are really the rudder of the day, as Dan Miller would say. I think it’s great that you prioritize reading your Bible like that.

      Also, I know what you mean about getting up late and your whole day being thrown off. I feel the same way when I do that.

  • Reply Michael Wright March 1, 2012 at 11:02 am

    Michael, you have the secret to a creating a smoother day by getting up early. I did this for years when I commuted an hour to work (awaking at 4:30, reading, praying) and now that I’ve been working at home for the past five years, it’s harder to do. Ironic, I know. I’ve had spurts of doing the 5am wake time in there and it proves to be a major day-changer. The key is getting to bed by 9:30 or 10pm at the latest, and that is hard to do sometimes. It’s got to be a priority.

    But what is all this talk about Stretching in the morning? I read that Kent Julian stretches first thing and now you’re stretching! 🙂 Maybe I should give it a try…after all, it’s the first thing my Maltese does when she wakes up; must be a natural need.

    Another plus to going to bed by 10pm is that apparently not all 8 hour periods of time are equal. You are much better rested by sleeping 10 to 6am, then midnight to 8am. Keep it up!

    • Reply Michael Good March 1, 2012 at 1:06 pm

      Haha, Michael. Stretching is the secret sauce! It’ll change EVERYTHING!

      No, actually I’ve had conic back pain and headaches nearly every day for about 15 years. I tried some different things to get it fixed, but nothing helped until I started physical therapy.

      Here, my PT and I work a lot of stretching and then strengthening over the course of about 6 months. Then, I was stretching about 45 min in the morning and 45 min in the evening 7 days a week.

      Now that things are more under control, I spend about 20 minutes a day.

      Totally agree on the priority of getting to bed earlier. I do not function well if I’m short on sleep for any length of time.

      I didn’t know you work from home. What do you do?

      • Reply Michael Wright March 1, 2012 at 4:24 pm

        Michael, this is simply amazing. You have physical issues going on and yet you are not letting it hold you back! My wife has similar issues and all the surgeries that go with it. They’ve offered no help at all, so I always have an ear out for what people did for overcoming pain issues. I’d love to chat sometime about your story there, so we (my wife and I) might understand a little more of what you’ve done to help decrease the issue. Stretching, obviously!

        I am an Electrical Engineer by schooling and work in the Telecom services market. We order, engineering and install various eqpt for the big guys, ATT, verizon, etc. Working from home was nothing I ever lobbied for, it was just the model my company started going with. It has it’s pluses and minunes of course. Since Home = Work Office, it can be hard to distinguish between the two sometimes, especially when things get really busy.

        • Reply Michael Good March 2, 2012 at 2:44 pm

          I’d love to chat sometime. When is good for you?

          • Michael Wright March 2, 2012 at 3:41 pm

            How about today? Anytime. I’ll email you my #.

  • Reply Jon White March 1, 2012 at 12:27 pm

    Michael I’ve started to wake up at 5:45 starting in January to get my day off the right foot also. It’s only about 30 minutes earlier than I normally would wake up but it has been really beneficial to me to read scripture and pray before I start the day. It was hard the first week or so, but once my body got adjusted it is not too bad at all!

    • Reply Michael Good March 1, 2012 at 12:55 pm

      That’s great, Jon. I’ve noticed as well that it’s not just getting up early and doing whatever, it’s about being intentional with that time. The worst for me is to jump on the computer right away. That can ruin my whole day if I let it.

  • Reply Joe Lalonde March 1, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    I get up at varying times throughout the week. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I am up and at it at 6. Tuesday and Thursday I get up at 5(these are my main exercise days during the week). Saturday and Sunday vary depending upon what is happening that day.

    • Reply Michael Good March 2, 2012 at 2:45 pm

      I like it, Joe. Sounds like you have it all planned out. That’s the way to do it.

  • Reply robclinton March 1, 2012 at 8:13 pm

    Michael, good for you, that’s awesome! That intentional living will pay off… It’s nice getting up early… Me, I don’t have an exact set time to get up, it tends to change, but stays within a certain bracket… Sometimes its 4am and sometimes it’s 5:30am, but rarely do I stay asleep past 5:30am… I don’t like alarm clocks, so I just allow myself to wake up naturally, and I typically do when I get to sleep in time.. If I stay up past 10:30 or 11:00pm, which does happen, that might mess me up a little… But usually I’m down by 10:30pm… I think it’s important…. All those quiet moments in the morning are essential to me, and really rev me up for some productivity, and a fruitful day… Also, there’s something about being the last one down and first one awake that I like…

    • Reply Michael Good March 2, 2012 at 2:47 pm

      I hear you, Rob. That’s great that you get up without an alarm clock. I know some other people that do that and I always wondered how they do it. I guess if you’re consistant enough, you get used to it.

      • Reply robclinton March 3, 2012 at 4:06 pm

        You do get used to it… Plus, getting the kids ready, I want to make sure I’m up and ready before them, so that’s an extra motivation to get up early. Overall, it’s intentional living, and it all pays off…

        • Reply Michael Good March 3, 2012 at 5:00 pm

          I love that, Rob. I can tell you’re proactive and intentional with things. That’s awesome, keep it up!

  • Reply Rob Coburn March 1, 2012 at 10:21 pm

    Michael, Thanks for the checklist that really helps me. I will post that on my desk. I have a tendency of wearing way to many hats during the day and that keeps me from accomplishing the things that are of the highest priority. I am going to use your list to help build my own. Thanks for highlighting your process and I look forward to posting my progress. Blessings, @missioncoach

    • Reply Michael Good March 2, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      That awesome, Rob. I’ve found that it really helped me. It’s about working backwards and then sticking to it. That’s still a challenge sometimes.

  • Reply Michael Good March 3, 2012 at 5:08 pm

    Wow, this is really the going trend! I think that’s great. I remember hearing of some study that showed that nearly all successful people got up by 5:30, or something like that.

    I think it’s great that you found a time to write that works for you. I know I don’t writing well in the evenings, whereas, Claudia does. I like to do it earlier in the day sometime.

  • Reply Jody Berkey September 25, 2012 at 3:19 pm

    Wow, looks like I about six months behind on this post, but since you linked to it, I’ll respond 🙂  Six o’clock is my wake up time.  Steve and I have been pretty consistent with getting up and doing an hour of P90X2 together while Elijah is still sleeping.  It’s our together time.  Working out right away gets me more focused for the rest of the day, not to mention the extra energy.  

    • Reply Claudia Good September 27, 2012 at 9:25 pm

      Cool Jody! I can picture you two sweating it out while Elijah is snoozin away. 🙂 I’ve heard P90X is pretty intense! Exercising first thing like that sure does get your day started right…

  • Reply Adele January 27, 2015 at 2:16 pm

    Well, I have been trying to get up earlier, like at 5:30 a.m. but so far only at 6:00a.m. once. I NEED discipline in this area because I’ve been at night owl all the days of my life, except when I was working at a really good job. I have been trying to break the horrible habit because I want to have a close relationship with The LORD. I have read many, many bible verse of “rose early in the morning”, “rising early in the morning” to pray, to talk to GOD and to hear and listen to His voice but I continually have in the faultered in this area. I was about to give it all up completely until I ran across your “how I get up early” paragraph amongst many after I instructed Google to set my alarm at 5:30a.m. and I was just messing around to see if Google really had that much access to my phone. They do and that is scary. I will try this. Pray for me and my discipline please. Thank you. Now just trying to find my secret place to pray.

    • Reply Michael Good February 3, 2015 at 10:15 pm

      Hi Adele, thanks for the comment. Creating good habits are rarely easy, but totally worth it. Stick with it. You can do it!

  • Reply Alexys Jade August 22, 2015 at 12:02 pm

    im a freshman in high school and i have to be in the next town over for 615 every morning so i can catch the bus for 625a. My highschool is 25 minutes away. i really want to get in the habit of waking up at 530a but i have an unofficial diagnosis of sleep apnia (i dont know how to spell it) i just need some pointers on what time i should go to sleep and how to not pick up my phone every 2 mins. When i lay in bed… I have a bad habit of reaching for the televison remote… and at my moms, I can keep up witth it… but at my dads house no one really has a set “bed-time” so its hard to stay on track…

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