Sorry for that title. I couldn’t help myself.
I wish I could take a poll on here- How many different snooze alarms do you have on your phone right now? Does it look like this one to the right? I would guess at least 3. There are some people I’ve seen with 20, 30 or hell, one for every five minutes for 3 hours. Why does it seem like everyone has a major issue with snoozing these days? I bet if you ran through your Instagram posts and stories, you’d see something joking about this “snoozing culture” we’ve created. A study conducted by French tech firm Withings says that 57% of Americans snooze regularly and some 70% of Brits do too! We spend nearly 3.5 MONTHS of our lives snoozing!
I’ll admit, I do it too (more than I’d like to admit). Sometimes once, sometimes multiple times. How many times I snooze depends on a ton of factors from the day before, but it usually just boils down to a simple decision. Get up or SNOOZE! We all choose snooze far too often because we’re lured by the warm, comfortable covers and the idea of a brief (9 minutes) escape into the depths of the dream you didn’t finish. Unfortunately, that can hurt you way more than it can ever help you!
Most research shows that snoozing actually makes you ore tired than just getting up! Not to get too technical, but when you go back to sleep after waking, you can actually start another sleep cycle. Once your brain releases those “sleep” chemicals (serotonin, and stops releasing “awake” chemical, dopamine), you won’t be fully awake until those chemicals wear off. This can take up to 4 HOURS! The more often you hit snooze, the more your brain sends mixed signals, making it harder and harder to wake up. This grogginess feeling between when you wake up and actually feel awake is called Sleep Inertia. And the negative effects of it are seen in your memory, judgment, decision-making abilities and reaction time. I don’t know about you guys, but I already have enough issues with those parts of my brain and don’t need ANY HELP!
“If you really think about it, hitting the snooze button in the morning doesn’t even make sense. It’s like saying, ‘I hate getting up in the morning-so I do it over… and over… and over again.” – Demetri Martin
Plus, how can you win your morning, day, week, month, etc. if you don’t start with the VERY FIST ACTION of your day? I know that may seem dramatic, but it really is that important. One easy way that I found to help get up in the morning is using the “5 Second Rule” that’s explained in Mel Robbins’ book of the same title. Simply stated, when your alarm clock goes off, count down backwards form 5-4-3-2-1-GO and get up. Mel says “The moment you have an instinct to act on a goal, you must push yourself to move within 5 seconds, or your brain will kill it.” GET UP AND GOOOOO!
If that doesn’t help, here are some other ways that I have found to work for me:
1) Put your alarm in your bathroom or other location.
This way, I have to get up to cut it off, and since I’m already in the bathroom, I might as well turn on the shower. I’ve noticed that if I just pull the covers back and put my feet on the ground, I am MUCH more likely to stay up and keep moving.
2) Get an automatic coffee maker.
There are studies that show that simply the smell of coffee can have almost the same effect as actually drinking coffee. So get your brew to brewing 10 minutes before you want to wake up and left the wafting smells of that delicious bean water to raise you from the dead. Bonus points for having your alarm be “The Sound of Silence” to gently pull you from the depths of darkness!
3) Engage your other senses.
Lighting is a huge component of waking up as well. One trick that I love (and Amanda HATES) is to cut on the lamp right when the alarm goes off. When I buy a house, I will most certainly have automatic shades to let in some light. You can also use automatic lights like these Phillips Hue lighting kit.
4) Change how you think about your bedroom.
How many of you are guilty of getting in bed after a long day feeling exhausted only to cut on the TV, pull out your phone to flip through IG or open up your computer to answer those late afternoon emails? Or how about all three? I know I am guilty. Did you know that all of this actually primes your brain to expect the work and stress? This can delay your sleep and the decrease the quality of your sleep. Your bedroom should be for two things: Sleep and Sex. This will train your brain that it’s a place for intimacy and relaxation.
5) Create a bedtime routine!
I know, I know. Y’all are probably tired of my routines business, but doesn’t this just make sense? Much like having a morning routine to help your brain “boot up,” you also need one to help it shut down. Devote an hour of your time at night getting ready for bed. Don’t watch violence or stimulating TV, drink caffeine or alcohol, exercise, or use visual electronics for that matter.
Instead, take a hot shower/bath, read, light a candle with a relaxing scent, talk to your significant other, meditate and create a list for what you need to accomplish the next day. Getting this on paper will help stop your mind from racing once the lights go out. Reading a book with a soft light works wonders on a racing mind.
6) Listen to Calm Sleep Stories.
I know this one could probably go in the 5th bullet point, but I think it’s important enough to have its own category. For me, reading can actually keep me up, especially if it’s something I’m really interested in. Calm sleep stories, on the other hand, put me to sleep within 5 minutes almost EVERY TIME!
Covering Fiction, non-fiction, kids classics, nature and and sleep music recorded specifically for sleep, everyone can find something to help them drift into a deep sleep. If you do anything I’ve written here, listen to one of these when you go to bed tonight. Click here for list of them!
7) Get better sleep.
Easier said than done, right? Well, if you follow the items above, this should be much easier and really consist of two elements: Go to bed earlier and at the same time each night. The process of shutting your brain down and then waking it back up at roughly the same time every night helps you wake up more refreshed and ready to crush your day. Follow a morning routine like this to help get the most out of your morning!