I am not what you would call a morning person, unless your definition of morning is pretty broad. Ideally I would sleep from around 1 or two in the morning, until I got up, say tennish. This does not happen too often. I think the last time was 1989.
As a result I am not much of a night-time person either, but that is for a different discussion. Let me focus on mornings. I do not think I am the only one in this situation. There is a reason that coffee sales are so high, and why people are willing to drink those less than tasty energy drinks.
Judaism recognizes some of us need a little help easing into our days. It even works for people who bounce out of bed. There is a prayer that we are supposed to say every morning called Modeh Ani for men, and Modah Ani for women. It means, “I am thankful.” These are the very first words we are supposed to say out loud. I know that these are not the words I may have initially said upon waking.
Our tradition understands that the thoughts you wake up with are likely to influence your mood for the rest of the day, and quite likely the mood of those to whom you expressed yourself upon waking.
We should start our day with the recognition that no matter how difficult the day might be that we are facing, we at least woke up to have it, and that we have the potential to do something worthwhile with our day.
I will talk about more of the prayer next week, but a good exercise to do before bed is to concentrate on waking up with the thought “Modeh/Modah Ani, I am grateful and thankful.” It took me about three months, but this is how I wake up (most days).