Hi. My name is Amanda and I am in a committed, albeit toxic, relationship with my snooze button. Don't think I'm not aware of the negative effects this communion has on my life. The nights are late, the mornings are rough, and the bags under my eyes hold all the proof. Yet somehow, I still snooze in eight-minute increments from 7 a.m. until 8 a.m. every day — sorry, not sorry?
But honestly, it's a habit I've been trying to kick for the last three years. Every Jan. 1, resolution number one is become a morning person. I want to be one of those people who makes breakfast at home, drinks a cup of coffee, meditates, does yoga, watches a morning talk show, and throws in a load of laundry all before heading out for the day. But my snooze button, my beloved, cherished snooze button, seems to have a siren call I can just not resist.
I decided this is the year I finally get serious about kicking my mornings into gear, so I turned to the experts. Dr. Taz, MD, integrative health expert, explained that the reason hitting the snooze button is so bad for you is because it breaks up your sleep. Consist sleep is more important than a longer, interrupted sleep. Below are a few tips for getting a better night's sleep so you can wake up unaided and alert. (Here's hoping, kids.)
1. It's all about the nighttime prep
According to Dr. Taz, there are a few things you should start doing at night to set your self up for a successful morning sans-snooze. Start by limiting the amount of sugar and alcohol you consume prior to bed, and absolutely no coffee or caffeine after noon. Once you're ready to start winding down for the evening, create a room for rest. Remove all electronics from your "rest zone." Try taking a prebedtime bath with Dr. Teal's Lavender Epsom Salt ($5) to help with relaxation. "The lavender is soothing and relaxing while the Epsom salts contain magnesium to help with relaxation and sleep," explains Dr. Taz.
2. Avoid stressful mornings
This is one I really struggle with. Each morning in my snooze state, I am partially dreaming, partially putting together an outfit in my head. Once I have my outfit sorted, then I worry about lunch and feeding the cats and everything else I should have tackled the night before! My new goal is to iron and prep my outfit at night before bed. Same with my lunch. When you know you have everything already figured out, you'll be more prepared and eager to face the day. (Again, in theory.)
3. An easy one — go to sleep earlier
This sounds so obvious, but it's not easy to break bad habits! If you're like me and super into late-night Instagram stalking, mindless YouTube viewing, and casual pinning, the small task of going to sleep earlier can seem insurmountable. Dr. Taz recommended taking it slow. "Move your bedtime earlier in 30 minute increments," she explained. "And don't hit the snooze button more than once." And to that I say, good luck!