Alarm Clock Strategy

12 September 2010

sleep wake lifehack

I'm not a morning person by default. Life claims otherwise, though, so I've had to figure out how to wake up at a reasonable hour. Which is even more difficult when you throw in a little jet lag.

I play the typical games of setting my alarm 9, 18, or 27 minutes earlier than my target wake time. This gives me at least 1, 2 or 3 snooze cycles before having to drag my self out from the warm embrace of sleep.

Though, I'm amazed at how efficiently my sleep can adjust to a regular 9 minute interruption, and blow right on past my target wake time.

One alarm, 9 minute snooze, late!

At best, I'm 9 minutes late. Sometimes it's more like 27.

I use my iPhone as my alarm clock, docked next to the bed. Thankfully, it allows for multiple alarms. I've now taken to setting my typical N-snooze alarm, to gently ease me towards getting up. But now I also set a secondary backup alarm a mere two minutes after I really want to be awake.

Two alarms, 9 minute snooze, plus 2, okay!

By breaking the 9 minute cycle, the quick secondary alarm is like your mother standing over you, not letting you sleep the day away.

When the 2-after alarm goes off, my mind registers that I'm "late" since it's after the target time, but I'm not panicked since I'm not that late. Yet.

This is what I do to most successfully get up around 7am.

iPhone settings