Monday, March 26, 2012

1: Waking Up is Hard to Do

Something worth noticing about getting up when the alarm clock goes off.  First you want to sleep another hour or two (unless you are a lark, unlike me.  I think I was born an owl, but adopted a lark lifestyle in college.)  If you do, however, you are sure to regret it the rest of the day.  If you are at all subject to depression and malaise this will only compound the emotional problems.  In fact, it may bring them on when they wouldn't be there at all otherwise.

Even if you didn't get to bed at a reasonable hour, getting up on time makes sense.  Maybe if you feel a little tired at the end of the day, you'll be more apt to go to bed on time.  If you work a night shift or even evening, you won't be able to follow this guideline probably.  My sleeping time is 10 pm to 6 am.  I wish I could nap once in a while, but can't limit myself to the prescribed 15-20 minutes.  Especially if I didn't sleep well the night before.

There are some tricks to force yourself to get up and at the day ahead:

  1. Put your alarm clock at a convenient or rather inconvenient place from your bed.  This way, you'll be forced to get up to shut it off.  Once you are up you can stay up as easily as go back to bed.
  2. Make sure the alarm is as loud and annoying as possible.  That way you won't be able to sleep through it.  I have once or twice had nightmares in the morning that my alarm was going off and I couldn't stop it.   I pushed the snooze bar, flicked the switch, unplugged the clock, threw it against the wall, and hit it with a hammer.  Finally I actually woke up!
  3. Have a treat waiting for you when you get up.  For me it's a cup of strong coffee with creamer.  Especially Maxwell House or Taster's Choice.  Even the instant varieties taste good.  For someone else it might be a nice breakfast or hearing your favorite kind of music.
  4. If you must sleep in, don't turn the alarm off before going to bed.  Press the snooze bar and snooze, don't sleep, for the next 5-10 minutes.  Make a rule with yourself that you will press it no more than twice or once if you have somewhere to go or a lot you like to do in the mornings before you head out the door.
Be sure to have a morning routine waiting for yourself when you get up.  First one thing than another.  If you don't get up on time though, it may lag over you the rest of the day.