Adulting in Veterinary School: being a morning person! 

September 2018

Veterinary school demands long hours: long hours of class, long hours of studying.  It can be incredibly difficult to wake up for those 8:00 AM classes or 7:00 AM extra-curriculars -especially during Iowa Winters where you will commonly get to school, and leave school, without ever seeing the fleeting sun.

On that dreary note, I would love to share some ways to trick your body into being a morning person.

Alarms: some people leave their alarm clocks across the room, forcing them to get out of bed to turn it off.  I prefer waking up a little happier! I have an old mp3 player that connects to an alarm clock (I am sure there's also an app for that somewhere), and I set it to go off a few minutes before my "real alarm."  I wake up to songs I love or audiobooks.  The voices are quieter than that ear-burning beeping sounds of most alarms.  As a back-up, I set two phone alarms a few minutes apart, but usually I wake up slowly from the mp3 player, and it sets a happy mood for my day.  

Maintaining Sound: once I wake up, I turn on my favorite streaming app to play music that I know will be up-beat without being overwhelming.  This works great to stimulate my mind, and I no longer go through my morning plagued by thoughts of how much studying I did not get done the day before.

Sun: there are light / plug timers people commonly use while on vacation.  When I know I need to wake up super-duper before the sun, I set such a timer to a lamp in my bedroom and have it go off a minute or two before my alarms.  It seems to trick my mind into thinking the sun is out, so I wake up really well! 

Lighting: speaking of lamps, I have an overhead light attached to a ceiling fan, large desk lamp, small desk lamp, fairy lights across the ceiling, and a tiny reading light.  You can use these various lights (easily found for sale or free secondhand), to stagger your "sun" through the morning.  It can be easier to wake up with only a tiny little light before turning on the multi-bulb overhead that makes your 6:00 AM wake up feel like high noon. 

Although these ideas may seem trivial, I have had many people ask how I am a "morning person."  I sadly have not been able to be a morning person in over a decade!  Hopefully, with the first day of Fall around the corner, this will help some of you hop out of bed willingly (or at least, almost). 

Best wishes,

Sarahbeth (: