Not Enough Time? How to Wake Up In the Morning (Early)
Black Enterprise Magazine January-March 2019 Issue

If you’re a busy professional making boss moves, you may often feel there’s not enough time in the day to handle priorities (forget extra activities). But with a keen eye for managing time and a little creative scheduling, you can find that extra hour to do more activities that will advance your career—and take care of the important business to boot. Want to know how to wake up in the morning? You have to think how much you can accomplish early, says Brazen Careerist contributor Laura Vanderkam.

Vanderkam says there is time in your day to do more. “…You might have to get up earlier to make it happen,” she writes.

“I’ve interviewed hundreds of people about their schedules over the years for my books on time management, and over time, I started to notice a pattern,” she continues. “Folks who’d moved beyond the tyranny of the urgent often woke up at times that most people prefer not to see.

It turns out that the early morning hours are great for getting stuff done.


First, you’re unlikely to be interrupted by an urgent meeting request or phone call at 6:00 a.m.

Second, research into the science of willpower finds that we’re best able to focus on difficult tasks while the day is young. Willpower is like a muscle, and over a long day of concentrating in boring meetings, dealing with difficult people or battling traffic, it’s simply used up.

In the morning, though, it’s fresh. So that makes the morning hours prime time for strategic thinking and work that you want to do, not have to do.”

Some of us may be getting up maybe an hour early enough to wash up, brush our teeth, eat breakfast, get dresssed and rush into our commute to work—maybe not in that order, of course, but Vanderkam says waking up just a few minutes earlier can make that much more difference. “Get up at 6:00 a.m. instead of 7:00 a.m., and you’ve got five hours of found time each week to bring your best self to the question of your professional development.”

Janell Hazelwood

Janell Hazelwood is associate managing editor at Black Enterprise, managing content across core areas of Money, Career, Small Business and Technology. She is also a featured blogger with My Two Cents, providing insights on branding, millennial career development, employment trends and leadership. She was previously a content producer and copy editor for Black Enterprise magazine, working across several editorial sections. The Hampton University graduate got her start in the newspaper industry, having worked for companies including The New York Times and Scripps Howard News Service. Her works and insights have appeared on The Huffington Post, MadameNoire, E!Online, Brazen Careerist, CBS News, and Arise TV.