How to Wake Up Without Hitting the Snooze Button

November 14, 2018

Categories: Sleep

I used to have a bad habit of hitting the snooze button on my alarm clock. For 20-30 minutes in the morning, I would toss and turn in bed, getting interrupted every 5 minutes by my alarm. It wasn’t a great way to wake up.

Interrupted Sleep

I heard a perspective about the snooze button recently that made a lot of sense to me. The idea was this: Let’s say you absolutely have to get up at 7 o’clock. A lot of people will set their alarm clock for 6:30 and hit the snooze button for half an hour. However, the problem with this strategy is the last 30 minutes of your sleep is pretty bad. You are constantly being interrupted.

Extra Sleep

On the other hand, if you set your alarm at 7am and get up right away, you get the added benefit of an extra 30 minutes of uninterrupted sleep. 30 minutes may not seem like a lot, but it adds up.

8 Tips to Wake Up Without the Snooze Button

Many people complain and say they need to hit the snooze button in order to wake up. They have trouble getting out of bed right away. Here are 8 tips for how to wake up without hitting the snooze button:

  1. Focus on your goal. Make it a goal to change your “snooze button habits” this month. Focus on this goal, and don’t worry about making any other changes in your life right now. When we try to change too many things at once, we usually fail. It’s better to focus on changing one thing at a time.
  2. Don’t rely on willpower. Our willpower is pretty weak, especially when it comes to things like waking up. Staying in bed just feels so much better! Instead of relying on willpower, make changes in your environment that make success more likely.
  3. Move your alarm across the room. When your alarm clock is right next to your bed, it’s easy to roll over and hit the snooze button. Instead, put your alarm across your room, far away from your bed. Make yourself get out of bed in order to shut off your alarm. Once you are out of bed, you are more likely to stick to your goal and get up.
  4. Set your alarm to the latest possible minute. Figure out what time you have to leave for work in the morning, and then determine the minimum amount of time you need to get ready. Set your alarm for that time. Doing this makes it more likely you will get out of bed right away, because there will be a consequence (e.g., late for work) if you don’t.
  5. Set two alarms. If you are half asleep, you might hit the snooze button on your alarm clock out of habit, without even realizing it. To keep this from happening, set two alarms. You might hit the snooze button one time while on autopilot, but it probably won’t happen a second time.
  6. Set the alarm on your coffee maker. Get an automatic coffee maker and set it to start making your coffee when it’s time for you to get up. Our senses are powerful triggers and get associated with specific events. For many of us, the smell of coffee is associated with waking up.
  7. Give yourself a reward. Make a deal with yourself. Think about something you really want. Maybe it’s a new pair of shoes, or a new gadget for your computer. Try to go 10 days in a row without hitting the snooze button. When you do it, give yourself the reward.
  8. Get help. Recruit a team of “change helpers.” Send out an email each day to your team, reporting on whether or not you hit the snooze button. Don’t rely on just yourself. Have a group of people hold you accountable.


Do you hit the snooze button a bunch of times in the morning, or do you wake up right away? What has helped you get out of bed in the morning?


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