Sleep Tips

How to Become a Morning Person (The SleepFit Diaries: Jillian)

Welcome to our series, The SleepFit Diaries. Sleep is crucial for our physical and mental health, yet so many of us struggle to get enough quality rest. That’s why in 2022, we teamed up with Sleep Coach, Bernice Tuffery, to launch our SleepFit Programme, helping five lucky Kiwis achieve better sleep habits. From practical tips to insightful advice, read on to discover how you too can get sleep fit and wake up feeling refreshed and energised.

Sleep offers the body and brain time to restore and recover, and for over 60 per cent of Kiwis to be missing out on their best sleep is not good enough. So, we’ve introduced the SleepFit Programme, designed to help Kiwis unlock their best sleep with better sleep solutions and tips.

When we first met our sleeper, Jillian, she rarely got a whole night of shuteye and often woke up during the night from being too hot. But, from her SleepFit journey, Jillian has picked up a pool of tips to help improve her sleep so she can wake up feeling motivated and ready to take on the day.

From Jillian’s bed matching session with Sleepyhead’s SleepMap technology, Jillian was matched to a luxury Sanctuary Escape bed curated with natural wool and silk. In addition, Jillian’s new bed features KülKōte temperature regulating technology to help tackle in-bed temperature fluctuations and make her sleep more comfortable.

Five weeks with her Sleepyhead bed, and Jillian is never looking back!

“I’m amazed at how incredibly comfortable and luxurious my new mattress feels. I actually look forward to going to bed now. I absolutely love it, and my dogs love it too – so much so that I’ve had to wake them up in the morning!”

At the heart of Jillian’s Sleepyhead bed is an advanced Sensorzone support system that uses hand-placed springs and a Dreamfoam core to provide maximum levels of support.

“I’m sleeping really well, and I’m so happy not to be waking up with the aches and pains I used to have in the morning. I’m finally transitioning from a night owl to an early bird!”

Jillian’s biggest challenge was understanding the flow-on effect of staying up late and how it impacted simple decisions, including food choices and exercise.

Meeting with Bernice Tuffery for her sleep coaching sessions has helped Jillian join the dots and take the steps needed to fulfil her dream goal of having the energy to wake up at 6am and start her day with a morning walk.

Sleep coach Bernice Tuffery says that as a night owl, Jillian’s chronotype makes staying up late feel natural. Those hours before midnight gave her precious ‘me time’ that she treasured. But with standard 8-5 work hours and 6am exercise goals, she knew she needed to shift her patterns to feel motivated and active in the morning.

By learning what she needed to do to support her body in making these adjustments, could her mornings become quality ‘me time’?

Here are Bernice’s top tips for becoming a morning person:

– Have a consistent sleep schedule – the same on weekdays and weekends.
– Gradually shift your bedtime and wake time earlier using 15-minute increments – giving your body at least a few days to adjust to each change.
– Develop a morning routine that motivates you to get out of bed
– schedule things you genuinely enjoy. For Jillian, this was meeting her friends for a walk.
– Get outside in the natural light and move your body in the morning.
– Shift mealtimes earlier and be consistent with them. (Night owls tend to eat later)
– Be strategic with caffeine – if needed, enjoy it in the morning and know your personal boundaries. Science shows that if consumed later in the day or in excess, coffee risks sabotaging your goal of falling asleep and having a good night’s sleep.


Be kind to your body as you learn to become a morning person.

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