Most people think of themselves as either an evening or a morning person. Some people jump out of bed rejuvenated and ready to take on the day, while others wake up feeling exhausted and unrested. Waking up tired, also known as sleep inertia, can limit your decision-making abilities, sometimes even for several hours after waking up.
While changes in schedule and sleep pattern can affect how you wake up, the temptation to hit the snooze button often overpowers the will to get out of bed. But thankfully, there are many things you can do to break this cycle.
In this article, we will take a look at some of the best tips to get you out of bed quickly and show you how getting organized at night can improve your sleep. If you want to know how to wake up faster in the morning and shake off the cobwebs, read on.
Move Your Alarm Clock
Alarm clocks are generally placed next to the bed for convenience. After all, setting an alarm to wake up in the morning is often the last thing we do before going to sleep. But if you struggle to wake up, having your alarm at arm’s reach could exacerbate the problem.
Instead of putting your alarm on bedside table, find a location on the other side of your bedroom. When the sound goes off at your designated wake time, you will be forced to get out of bed to turn it off.
And if you really need help to get moving, choose the loudest setting to wake up to. While this may be slightly unpleasant, loud sounds stimulate adrenaline production and can further boost your level of alertness.
Monitor Your Sleep
Difficulty waking up could be the result of a poor night’s sleep or waking quickly from a deep sleep cycle. A sleep cycle lasts around 90 minutes and is made up of two groups that can be broken down into four stages. The first three stages make up non-rapid eye movement (NREM) while the fourth is REM – rapid eye movement sleep.
NREM sleep varies from light to very deep sleep, while REM sleep is often associated with dreaming. Waking up from REM or deep NREM stages can leave you feeling groggy and overly tired. To avoid waking up during these stages, you should use a sleep monitor device or app.
Sleep monitors allow you to track your sleep patterns in order to learn how to sleep better. Available as individual devices or as a smartphone app, most monitors include alarms and can wake you during a lighter stage of sleep. This will not only ensure you wake up more alert, but by tracking your patterns, you will also be able to see if there’s anything else disturbing your slumber.
Use Natural Light
Sleeping in a completely dark room can also lead to sleep inertia. When we wake, our brain responds to light signals by triggering the nervous system to increase body temperature and release hormones like cortisol. It also blocks the production of melatonin which promotes sleep.
If your room is blacked out, the lack of natural light can confuse the brain. With higher levels of melatonin in your system, waking can be difficult.
To avoid this, sleep with curtains slightly open to allow natural light in when the sun rises, and open them wide as soon as you’re awake. In winter months – or all year round if your bedroom doesn’t see much natural light – invest in an alarm clock with a light function. These can be used to simulate the sun rising and get you moving more quickly in the morning.
Remove Devices from the Bedroom
As our world has become more connected, our obsession with technology has also increased. If you have difficulty sleeping or waking refreshed, it could have something to do with your device use. Scrolling through social media before bed fills the optic nerve with light, disrupting the natural sleep process and keeping you awake longer.
To get the best rest, turn off your smartphone and television at least an hour before you go to sleep. Change your nighttime routine to include reading a book or listening to music to help you get to sleep.
Drink Water First Thing
After sleeping all night, it’s easy to wake up dehydrated. As our bodies are around 70% water, dehydration has the potential to cause a variety of health problems. One of the easiest ways to boost your morning mood is to drink water as soon as you’re awake.
Drinking a glass of water first thing can have some amazing benefits:
- Kick-start your metabolism
- Flush toxins and encourage bowel movements
- Boost weight loss
- Alleviate heartburn and indigestion
- Increase blood flow and improve complexion
While it can be tempting to crawl back under the covers, if you want to wake up faster, it’s important to get moving as soon as possible. By getting the blood flowing, you’ll stimulate endorphins which will make you feel more awake.
Get outdoors and go for a morning walk or run. You’ll not only see your city in a different light but you may even meet some new friends while you’re out exercising. Even if you’re not up for a run, incorporating some indoor exercises like jumping jacks or simple stretching can leave you feeling refreshed and alert.
Things to Do at Night
While the above tips will help you to wake up faster, there are many things you can do before you go to sleep that can also help.
Stick to a Designated Bedtime
It may make you feel like a child again, but setting and sticking to a designated bedtime can have a range of benefits on the quality of your sleep. While the amount of sleep you need changes as you age, it’s generally recommended to get between 7 and 9 hours sleep each night.
Plan your bedtime by considering when you need to wake up, and account for any pre-bed routines like brushing teeth or reading.
Limit Alcohol and Caffeine
If you want to have a good night’s sleep, it’s important to avoid stimulants like caffeine and alcohol late in the day. While alcohol is sometimes used as a sleep aid, it can cut down on REM sleep, thus making it harder to wake up in the morning.
Remove the stress of your morning routine by preparing for it the night before. Iron clothes, pack a bag, or prepare breakfast in the evening to give yourself more time in the morning for other activities (like exercise).
If you struggle to keep a schedule, try writing down everything you need to do the next day and see what you can tick off immediately. This can keep you from feeling overwhelmed and allow you to fall asleep worry-free.
There are many things you can do to help encourage better sleep and wake up more refreshed. Now that you know how to wake up faster in the morning, try incorporating a few of the above tips into your routine.
Simple things like moving your alarm clock and drinking water in the morning are easy to do and cost nothing. And by preparing for tomorrow the night before, you can fall asleep without worrying about what you have to do in the morning.