The early morning has gold in its mouth.
- Benjamin Franklin

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Self-improvement site for early risers - how to sleep well, wake up early and what to do then...

Tip #35. Wake Up With the Sun

Do not worry, this tip is not about waking up at 4 a.m., so keep reading...

When it comes to sleep, everyone prefers to sleep in a dark room. Our body is trained to sleep when it’s dark and we fall asleep faster and relax better in the darkness. So if darkness helps you fall sleep better, what do you need to wake up? Right, you need light! As soon as alarm goes off, expose yourself to a bright light (ideally - to sun light) and you won’t get back to bed again!

Light in the morning is good for two reasons:

  1. Our body is attuned with the nature and it’s natural to wake up when sun goes up. It’s how our ancestors lived for ages before invention of electricity. If sunrise time is too early for you, still start your morning bathing in the light. Light is a natural cue to our brain that it’s time to wake up.
  2. Our body responds to darkness producing melatonin, the sleep hormone. The light stops this process, thus making your waking up much easier. If you’re waking up in the dark room, it’s the same as trying not to sleep while taking sleep pills. So put yourself in the light as soon as alarm goes off and make it a part of your morning routine.

I regularly wake up my kid by pulling curtains open and allowing the sun to light up the room. On weekends when we are not in a hurry it doesn’t work immediately, but it does work over 15-30 minutes. I guess that’s how long it takes to wake up when you don’t have any other irritants but the light. Opened windows and fresh air do accelerate the process.

As usually, technology is already here to put this effect in use. Philips developed a lamp combined with an alarm clock that gradually increases the intensity of light in the morning. Other manufacturers didn’t wait for too long, I easily found several similar devices at Amazon:

In the end, it doesn’t matter if you use some device or just open the curtains. Just make sure to leave the world of darkness as soon as you wake up and join the Light Side...

Added: 9/8/2007 7:05:48 PM

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Stuff to help you wake up

Fitbit One Wireless Activity Plus Sleep Tracker HoMedics Sound Spa Relaxation Machine Sonic Boom + Vibrating Alarm Clock
Digital Alarm Clock with Large Display Sleep Monitoring Watch Philips Wake-up Light
BioBrite Sunrise Clock Sonic Boom Alarm Clock Flying Alarm Clock
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Top 10 Wake Up Tips

As voted by site visitors
1. To wake up early, go to bed early
2. Do not eat before going to bed
3. Use multiple alarm clocks
4. Have important things planned for the morning
5. GTD For Early Risers - Create A Morning Ritual
6. Put Yourself Under Time Pressure
7. Start Slowly But Start Now
8. Avoid Alcohol, Tobacco And Caffeine
9. Practice Waking Up
10. Wake Up Tricks Of The Trade (Video)

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DISCLAIMER: This site is NOT a professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment resource. Use it at your own risk. If you have sleeping disorders please consult your doctors first.