When You Snooze, You Really Do Lose!

You know that delicious feeling? Being warm and cozy in your bed, sleeping like a log, hopefully enjoying a wonderful dream and then without warning BAM! That alarm goes off, and without opening your eyes you desperately feel around for the snooze button, or worse, your phone is your alarm and with one eye barely open, you hit snooze and beg your phone for another 9 minutes of precious sleep. And likely, when the alarm goes off again, you rinse and repeat.

And while that feels like your only option as you groggily fall back asleep, hitting the snooze button can do more harm than good, and believe it or not, leave you feeling more tired during your day, than if you got up right away.

Why is Snoozing Bad?

Well, first of all, the sleep you are catching in 10, 20 or even 30 more increments is poor quality sleep.  Second, you are starting a new sleep cycle that gets interrupted, only to hit the snooze button again and start yet another fragmented sleep cycle.  This just leaves you feeling groggy and can last for several hours after you finally do get up!

This is due to sleep inertia which is defined by the National Sleep Association as “”the feeling of grogginess and disorientation that can come from awakening from a deep sleep.”

Hitting the snooze button also messes with the hormones that your brain produces upon rising and in general, throws off your natural circadian rhythms.  This can do two things.  Make you groggy and sluggish during the day, and disrupt your sleep at night!

You are better off simply setting your alarm for a later time so your sleep cycles can occur naturally.

However, if we probe deeper, the bigger question at play is why are you so desperate for more sleep?  Here are some things to ask yourself and see what part of your sleep patterns need some attention so that you are well rested and not in need of that snooze button!

Getting a Good Night’s Sleep Check List

  • Are you getting enough sleep on a daily basis?  (Preferably 7 – 8 hours per night)
  • Do you look at your screens at night before going to bed?  (This can disrupt much needed melatonin production which helps you  sleep)
  • Do you have a relaxing night time ritual that helps you fall asleep?  (No screens 60 – 90 minutes before bed, soothing music, hot shower or bath, reading etc.)
  • Do you go to sleep and get up at the same time each day?  (Consistent bed and wake up times can do wonders!)
  • Do you have trouble staying asleep?  (Is your room quiet, dark and not too cold or hot?)
  • Is your alarm clock within arm’s reach?  (Try moving it across the room so you have to physically get out of bed to turn it off.)

So, the next time you go to hit your snooze button, think again and just make yourself get up.  It might be painful the first few days, but if you get in the habit of getting up and relaxing in bed for a few minutes without snoozing, you’ll quickly find yourself enjoying more energy, clearer thinking and a whole lot more productive during your day!

Until the Next Time!

Vivienne & Andrew



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