TikTok trend The 5am Club: I tried it but what is it and does it actually work?
A look at where the TikTok trend ‘The 5am Club’ came from and what I really thought of it after trying it out myself
The 5am Club trend has gone viral on TikTok once again. The trend first took off in 2021 after millions of people discovered Robin Sharma’s 2018 international bestseller The 5am Club. Now it seems the trend is taking off again with over 84 million views on the social media platform but what is it and does it work?
Not so long ago I would’ve described myself as categorically ‘not a morning person’ and friends and family would agree. I love my sleep and would never want to lose any amount of my precious shut-eye to wake up earlier than I needed to. However, after hearing a number of people trying out the trend and saying how it changed their lives - quite the claim - I had to give it a go myself.
What is the 5 am Club?
The 5am Club is based on the idea that you wake up at 5 am every single morning - including the weekends - and spend an hour on yourself. Robin Sharma’s book describes how doing just three things in that hour everyday can improve your life. They include 20 minutes of exercise, 20 minutes of self reflection/meditation and 20 minutes of personal growth.
According to the experts there are many benefits for waking up early in the morning including: better performance, improved sleep, reduced stress, more proactiveness, better morning rhythm.
What is the Miracle Morning method?
Robin Sharma's book is also very similar to Hal Elrod’s 2012 book ‘The Miracle Morning’. Both books use the method of waking up early to improve your productivity in your day. The problem I found with Robin’s method was that it is restrictive - you have to wake up at 5am every day no matter what. I have a 5-year-old and some days I still like to lie in.
I felt Hal’s method was more adaptable to my everyday life although he recommends doing six things called SAVERS each for 10 minutes - Silence (meditation), affirmations, visualisation, exercise, reading and scribing (journaling).
What happened the first day I set my alarm for 5am?
The two key points that stood out to me for making it easier to wake up at 5am instead of my usual 7/7:30 am were:
- Mindset - when going to bed don’t tell yourself you will be tired or you will wake up in that mindset.
- Most of the time you WILL NOT want to get up, however as soon as your alarm goes off, get out of bed, head straight to the bathroom and brush your teeth. This gives you a few minutes without thinking to wake up, throw your workout outfit on and you are good to go. (This is still the method I regularly use to wake myself up.)
I tried both methods I have adapted them for what works best for me. I do my early morning routine Monday - Friday which means getting up at 6am so that I have a power hour working on myself before I have to get my son up for school.
After brushing my teeth and putting my workout clothes on I do a 20 minute workout, eat a healthy breakfast and read the news. The meditation was great for clearing my mind but just made me feel tired again and the affirmations, visualisation and journaling felt forced so I quit them.
Has the 5am Club changed your life?
Absolutely! For two reasons the first is that I wake up early and have a routine which does actually set me up for the day. The second and for me the best is that like any mum I struggled to lose weight after having my son - getting up early and working out for just 20 mins five times a week helped me lose weight quickly (I lost half a stone within the first few weeks of the routine) and because I wasn’t tired through the day I was much more productive with work and day to day household chores.
There are still times I get out of routine and ‘treat’ myself to a lie in and skip the early morning routine but it amazes me how much better off I feel when sticking to my early mornings - and you'll be surprised how many more steps you get in just by getting up an hour earlier.