There are few sounds in life more irritating than the “beep, beep, beep” of an alarm clock in the morning. It’s a painful reminder that you need to get out of bed and start your day. Yet, it’s one of the most common household items, with 89% of Americans waking up next to an alarm clock.
What if we could make the wake-up process more enjoyable? There is an array of new alarm clock technologies that not only help you wake up more easily, they can make it more fun as well.
How about waking up to the sunrise… or an artificial sunrise, that is. Progressive alarm clocks make no sound but gradually turn your room from dark to light. They mimic the actual rising of the sun and slowly add light to your room until it reaches the brightest point – the time you set to wake up. The artificial light signals to your brain that it’s time to wake up, and is far less jarring than the beeping of an alarm clock or blasting of a radio.
Have you traded in the alarm clock on the nightstand for your cell phone instead? Well, now there’s an app for that… or several apps for that. Just type “sleep cycle” into the App Store search and you’ll find over a hundred applications, all claiming to wake you up at the most optimal time. They claim to set off an alarm at your lightest point of sleep based on what time you fall asleep, an average sleep cycle, and what time you need to wake up. I downloaded one of these apps today, and I’ll be trying it out over the next week. Check back here for an update to see if the app made waking up any easier or if I felt a difference in the morning.
Are you constantly late in the morning because you don’t hear your alarm? If you’re a heavy sleeper, there’s an alarm clock for you, too! How about one that rolls off your nightstand and hides? Or a clock that forces you to do bicep curls first thing in the morning? If that won’t wake you up, perhaps the clock that shakes your bed is for you. If you’re looking for a fun way to start your day, or you need an extra push to get up in the morning, check out these quirky alarms that are sure to get you out of bed!
Now that we’ve discussed some different alarm clock options, it’s time to ditch the snooze button. It’s so easy to reach over the side of the bed, with your eyes half-open, and hit the snooze button for “just 5 more minutes”. But these short intervals of shut-eye are making it harder for you to wake up. As stated on sleep.com, hitting the snooze button is not giving you quality sleep which is just as detrimental as getting less sleep. Dr. Edward Stepanski says, “You waste hours and hours a week by hitting the snooze button. Instead, set your alarm for 20 minutes later—that’s how much sleep you actually get when you abuse the snooze button for an entire hour”. So, disable the snooze button and set your alarm to go off 20 minutes later than usual, you’ll wake up more refreshed than if you got those “5 more minutes”.
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Contributor: Elizabeth Murphy