Illustration by Sofia Bews.

Illustration by Sofia Bews.

Sleeping is the best thing. I want to sleep as long as possible, every day, and I have wanted this my entire life. Unfortunately for my #sleepgoals, I grew up Mormon, and as a Mormon teenager had to go to something called Early Morning Seminary. All four years of high school, I was expected to be awake and participating in a religion class held in someone’s basement 10 to 15 minutes away from my house by 5:45 AM every day. You heard me. EVERY DAY. That meant at least a 4:30 AM alarm so there would be time to curl my hair and do my makeup.

In college, I fixed all this. No more Early Morning Seminary. Even with classes that started at 8 AM, I (like many of my classmates) realized that if you simply stopped caring because no one is looking at you that early in the morning, you could add large chunks of time to your nightly sleep by literally rolling out of bed and going to school in sweatpants. I looked a mess; I didn’t care. Solved!

But…what if you want the best of both worlds? What if you want to sleep as long as humanly possible and not look like a bedraggled, rumpled ghost with tangled hair and panda smudges under your eyes? It is possible to wake up and be out the door in minutes (in my experience, as few as four) and look like a pulled-together human. You just need to plan.

How to Wake Up and Be Out the Door in a Matter of Minutes

A word of caution: This routine will not work if you start by hitting the snooze button. You cannot snooze! In order to not snooze, let me offer you a tip you will hate: Choose the most obnoxious alarm ringer on your phone or clock (for me, it’s the “EEEERN EEEERN EEEERN” sound of a nuclear plant meltdown alert) and turn the volume all the way up. Then plug your phone/alarm in across the room so you have to get up to turn it off. If you really can’t trust yourself, make sure your phone/alarm has full power and then…hide it from yourself. In the morning, when your intense, VERY LOUD alarm goes off, sleepy-you won’t remember where you put it, and you’ll spend up to a full minute swearing in a panic, trying to find it before your family, roommates, or neighbors come and destroy you.

OK, now, to ready yourself to simply roll out of bed and go:

  • Get some of those face-cleansing disposable towelettes and put them on your nightstand.
  • Pick out your outfit the night before and (this is important) set out all the outfit components—including jewelry, socks, and accessories—in a visible, specially designated place in your room. In the same place, lay out your makeup, if you use it. (But we’re only talking the essentials, like mascara, an easy-to-apply BB cream, and/or a lip-and-cheek color.)
  • Have your bag, if you carry one, packed with your basic needs. Stuff like all your books, a hairbrush if you use one, a small mirror, and a breakfast food item, like a granola bar.

Tuck yourself in for the night, because in the morning you’re going to…

1. Wake up, get up, and start getting ready immediately. Grab one of those face-cleansing towels on your nightstand and mop your face with it. Brush your teeth. Put in contacts if necessary. If makeup is your thing, this is the time to apply it, fast. Smear on that BB cream! Quickly kiss your lashes with the mascara wand! Use the dual lip and cheek color to add a touch of life to your sleepy skin, and you’re done!

2. Put on the clothes you already picked out, rapidly. This includes no thought and no costume changes! Accept your greater wisdom from awake-land last night.

3. Get out the door. If your hair needs brushing, brush it as you walk to whatever mode of transport you’re using to get where you’re going. If it needs a style, hey, let’s put it in a ponytail! The basic idea here is not to look like a movie star, or even your best-you; the idea is to look like you did NOT wake up four minutes ago.

4. Eat your breakfast item while on the bus or in the car.

Congratulations! You’re ready to enjoy your day with fullest allotment of sleep you could possibly have had! ♦