Going back to sleep on a loop: A very bad habit!
I admire people who get up straight away after their alarm clock rings the first time ⏰. In my eyes, it’s a kind of superpower, because it’s impossible for me to get up right away 🤯. I even schedule two alarms to drag me out of bed, ringing at 5-minute intervals, for 30 minutes... Yes, the alarm reminder or snooze is very handy when you feel like extending your night a bit, especially when you feel tired 😅. However, in reality, it only serves to disturb us, and more importantly, it really isn’t beneficial for our brain, according to sleep specialists from the Sleep Clinic Services center based in Brisbane, Australia.
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The consequences of using the snooze button
Why is the snooze function a bad idea? To understand this, you need to know the phases and cycles of sleep. People with polyphasic sleep or sleep paralysis are usually aware of this cycle, as it influences their night. So you need to know that we have 3 phases in a cycle 😴:
- Light sleep: this is the transition state to deep sleep,
- Deep sleep: it allows us to recover physically (muscles, immune system, etc.)
- REM sleep: our brain is active during this phase. It ensures the preservation of memories and stimulates creativity. It’s in this phase that we dream.
When we go back to sleep after hitting the alarm clock, our body and brain prepare to go through a cycle again 💤. However, when the alarm goes off again after 10, 15, or 20 minutes, we disrupt the cycle, which will contribute to our increased feeling of fatigue, as sleep expert Neil Robinson explains.
Harmful for the heart and brain
I’ve been known to jump when my alarm goes off again about 10 minutes later 😱. I know that my sleep cycle lasts 1hr30, so obviously, my body doesn’t like being woken up again after a few minutes.
Nevertheless, beyond disrupting our sleep cycle, the snooze function will come and assault us. Our heart races and our brain becomes “disoriented”, as it was preparing for a deep or REM sleep phase. This will even have repercussions on our stress, which will contribute to making us get out of bed on the wrong side... So we might as well learn to stop using this harmful function 🥴.
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How do I stop using the snooze button on my alarm clock?
I’m well aware that I need to change this habit 😬! I even know the tricks to stop using the snooze button on the alarm clock, I just need to set it up (don’t do what I did 🤭!). Here’s how to avoid hitting the snooze button:
👉 Tip no. 1: place your alarm at the other end of the room
This is the best thing to do, as it forces us to get up 😆. If, like me, you use your smartphone as an alarm clock, don’t hesitate to invest in an alarm clock that will only have this function! It allows you to either keep your phone next to it or to do a little digital detox and leave it in another room 🤐.
👉 Tip no. 2: use apps to be woken up at the right time
If you want to keep your phone close by, there are apps (like Sleep Tracker) that track your sleep cycles. So you have to give your alarm clock a range to be woken up at the end of a cycle. For example, you can tell the application to wake you up between 7 am and 8.15 am. Sure, the alarm may go off earlier than you’re used to, but it’s much better for your fatigue to wake up when a cycle’s over 🤗.
👉 Tip no. 3: go to bed earlier
Yes, I know, it’s very hard when you’re a night owl 🦉. However, learning to go to bed earlier gives your body the right amount of hours to recover. You’ll tend to wake up naturally without an alarm clock if your body is well-rested. Personally, I’m a log, I need to sleep at least 8 hours, even 9. As I have a sleep cycle of 1hr30, I know that I need at least 5–6 hours to be in good form 🙂. Going to bed earlier, allows me to complete the number of cycles needed to wake up easily.
👉 Tip no. 4: stimulate your senses
When the alarm clock rings, we obviously use our ears. However, we can also use our other senses to get out of bed! There are alarm clocks that reproduce the sunrise and light up gradually. Our brain will react to the light and tell itself that it is time to wake up. Our sense of smell can also be stimulated! What could be better than smelling something that makes us want to get up, like a cup of coffee or some toast ☕? Of course, we don’t need someone waking up before us to wave a piece of toast under our noses, there are scent-diffusing alarm clocks, which are much more practical 😂!
Well, you can make it even simpler. Personally, I don’t close the shutters, so I wake up in the real daylight, that works well too 😛!
Editor’s note: Snooze is over!
As you’ve seen, the snooze function is over and even if it’s hard at first, you’ll feel much better. If you find it difficult to get out of bed in the morning, if you feel exhausted, or if you sleep badly because of worries that are running around in your head, don’t hesitate to make an appointment with a psychologist.
🤗 Understanding yourself, accepting yourself, being happy... It’s here and now!
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