How to avoid morning anxiety

Do you ever wake up to the shrill buzzer of your alarm with a tightness in your chest, a rapid heartbeat and/or a pit in your stomach? And you're tempted just to roll over and go back to sleep just so you don't have to deal with this feeling and face the day?

Waking up in the morning after a night's rest should be the least stressful part of the day. Yet, most mornings, I wake up with this inexplicable feeling of panic. Sometimes, shortly after I get out of bed, this feeling of anxiety melts away. Other times, it lasts for hours, even after I arrive at work.

So why does this happen? And how can you prevent it?

Some causes of morning anxiety may be low blood sugar, a fear of being late, nightmares, lack of sleep, and/or a stressful job.

Here are some tips for making the transition from a peaceful sleep to waking up more pleasant, according to

  • Switch your alarm clock noise to your favorite music or gradual pleasant chimes that increase in volume and frequency. Right now, my alarm sounds similar to a foghorn, so I'm thinking this suggestion could really help me out.
  • Place your alarm clock (or phone) out of arm's reach so you have to get out of bed to turn it off. I started practicing this last week by plugging my phone into the bathroom wall instead of by my bed. Also, check out this runaway alarm clock on Amazon
  • Put your robe and slippers next to your bed so you can stay warm and comfy as you climb out from under your covers.
  • Keep a snack that contains "good" complex carbohydrates and protein by your bed to eat right after you wake up. You went the whole night without food, so your brain may have "run out of fuel" as you slept. Some good carbs are nuts, whole grain crackers, pretzels or a granola bar.
  • Turn on upbeat music as you get ready for your day. 
  • Change how you perceive waking up. Practice thinking positively when you wake up and say out loud, "What a wonderful day!" 

Here's an example from the TV show "Friends" of how you should be starting your day:

You Might Also Like


  1. I've lived with Generalized Anxiety Disorder for the majority of my life. but the most common time my anxiety gets the best of me is when I’m trying to go to sleep. I've strated to slept with white noise machine since my anxiety started, and it's made all the difference.