The snooze button is stronger than You? Read this!

The circadian rhythm
Drawing by Adrian Serghie

Many people “cheat” on their morning routine and they hit the snooze button. Maybe hitting that snooze button is part of the morning routine now. How hard is it for you to wake up in the morning? Do you like pushing that snooze button? Have you ever wondered why?

Research shows that hitting the snooze button is a bad idea for our health because it disrupts our natural sleep patterns and it also messes up with our ability to wake up naturally. When the alarm goes off, our body gets into the waking up process. If we don’t wake up and we touch snooze, our body will try to go to sleep again and this cycle repeats itself a few times if you like playing with that button.

At a high level, after we hit that button, our body will try to go to sleep once again and if we reach the REM sleep, we’ll get into the fight or flight mode, and our body has to suffer from this. This is similar to starting and stopping the car a few times before leaving. You’ll also put in place some disruptive sleep patterns so you’ll probably wake up a few times at night.

The snooze button will also set your brain to tell you “a few more minutes” every time you need to get up because it gets used to that. I’m not even going to mention the fact that you’ll be late for whatever you need to do, which will make you panic once you realize how late it is. Uhm, I said I’m not going to mention it… oh well…

But… (yes, there is a but), you can change that. The cure is to try to keep yourself awake when the alarm goes off. “No shit, Sherlock! I know that’s what I need to do, but I can’t!” Well, you need to find something stronger than you and your sleep. Ideally, it would be an awesome purpose in life, but we all know that when the motivation is down, we’re there with it. Try planning to do something exciting the first thing in the morning. Remember when you were a child and it was Christmas morning? You probably were the first person awake because you were looking forward to crawl under the Christmas tree and dig into the presents. Excitement is the key. It can be taking a sip from your favorite type of coffee or eating your special breakfast. For me, it is to work at my upcoming book and honestly, if I don’t do it the first thing in the morning, I don’t have the time to do it during the day.

Now, if you think about it, snoozing is just a way procrastination takes advantage of us. Those drops of dopamine strengthens the snoozing button and that’s way it sticks with us. If we manage to find something exciting to do in the morning, we’ll get the dopamine while (or after) doing that, not from the snooze button. We created the habit so we can destroy it.

   What exciting activity can you set to do in the morning so you won’t hit that snooze button anymore?

49 thoughts on “The snooze button is stronger than You? Read this!

  1. Great post! I’ve always been a morning person and usually get right up when I wake. Often a few min before the alarm goes off. I’m not sure how I fell into this habit, but I can say I have tons of energy in the morning and when I do snooze, I’m usually groggy or less motivated.

  2. I make sure I sit up right away. Then I do a countdown, getting more determined as I count down. 5,4,3,21! Then I swing legs out of bed, raise arms and say ‘Yes’!! For some reason it works

  3. I tend to wake before the alarm. I don’t use it as a getting up alarm, husband rolls over & we use that snooze time to cuddle. It’s a good point about getting up, on the weekend I sometimes get up even earlier than I would during the week. It feels like extra snooze during the week is because work really feels like a chore at the moment.

      1. not always, but currently. I am increasingly isolated (in a dept of just me) & my main support has been reassigned & told me can’t support me anymore. Just struggling at the moment.

  4. Doing something exciting! That’s a good idea that I hadn’t really ever thought of.

    Because I’m on break I have the luxury of sleeping in till 7:00 on some mornings.

    Everyday though I feel bad about turning off my early alarm. Gonna try and see if I can get your idea in the works- maybe I’ll be more likely to get up early.

  5. When my alarm clock goes off in the mornings, I typically turn some upbeat music on to get me going. I found that when I do not have music going in the mornings, I hit the snooze button. Great and insightful post!!

  6. I have a bad habit of hitting the snooze button. Marcus Aurelius has a nice personal dialogue about this very subject. In book 5, he writes: when you have trouble getting out of bed, tell yourself: “I am rising to do the work of a human being. What do I have to complain about, if I’m going to do what I was born for—the things I was brought into the world to do? Or is this what I was created for? To huddle under the blankets and stay warm?” — But it’s nicer here … So were you born to feel “nice”? Instead of doing things and experiencing them? … And you’re not willing to do your job as a human being? Why aren’t you running to do what your nature demands?

    Reading that and your post convict me. Let’s see if tomorrow is any different.

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