Low Blood Sugar
Low blood sugar. I highly recommend investing in some kind of ‘daylight alarm’ (such as those made by Lumia). These are designed to emit a light. That is more similar to sunlight in terms of the wavelength. And will come on gradually as it approaches the time you set the alarm. This then gradually rouses you out of sleep and if all goes well. You’ll wake naturally before the alarm goes off.
As a result, you’ll feel significantly more awake and well rested. Even if it takes the alarm to wake you though. You’ll be waking up in a light environment from a much lighter state of sleep. You feel far less ‘sleep inertia’ and you’ll really notice the difference. When you’re forced to wake up without it. This is especially effective for those who struggle with SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder).
Trust me, this is one change that will really make a highly noticeable difference. Just think about the difference you’re now making: previously, you were sleeping deeply at which point a loud alarm would suddenly startle you awake. This would jolt you out of sleep with a start and you’d wake up into a pitch black room and have to drag yourself out of bed.
Instead, you’re now coming around gently. Waking up gradually and naturally as the room gets lighter and then being nudged over the edge by the actual alarm. And when you open your eyes. The room is already light and you’re already ready to go!
Get Up on Time Every Time
For those who struggle to get out of bed without hitting the ‘snooze’ button, a daylight alarm can help. If you need a little extra help, then try waking up in ‘stages’. Instead of forcing yourself to leap out of bed, agree that you’ll just prop yourself up into a more upright position and turn on the light when the alarm sounds.
If you must hit snooze then that’s fine once, but the second time it goes off you’re then going to grab a book, your phone or something else that will prevent you from dozing off. Absentmindedly look through this. Then, you should find you’re awake enough to get up. Getting up slowly is not only healthier, but it’s also much easier to do when you’re feeling low on will-power.
If you find you still can’t wake up effectively in the morning, then it may be that you’re struggling with a number of potential issues. If you have a scratchy throat or you feel ill, then below you’ll find some possible causes and solutions:
• Allergy – You can develop hay fever at any age and symptoms that are unnoticeable during the day can be much worse during the night when you’ve been breathing in dander or pollen all night. Unfortunately, most antihistamines will leave you feeling groggy too, so you’ll need to find another way to clean your environment.
• Mold – Mold poisoning can lead to a number of unpleasant short term and long term effects. If you have mycotoxin-producing black mold it can even give you asthma or eczema.
Low blood sugar – Daylight Alarm
Even just breathing in mold spores from less harmful types can leave you with a scratchy throat and a poor night’s sleep. If you notice the air smelling damp, then consider calling in a mold remediation company – it could be behind the walls or under the floorboards.
• Dehydration – It’s common to get dehydrated during the night. Make sure you drink enough before you fall asleep and have some water to hand. If you struggle with this one, you may want to consider trying chia seeds which absorb several times their mass’ worth of water.
• Low blood sugar – Breakfast is so named because you are ‘breaking your fast’. As you can imagine, going 10 hours without eating can leave you a little groggy so it’s possible you’re struggling with low blood sugar. Something that is thought to help this is a spoon of honey. Which contains both slow release and fast release sugar, providing you with a steady supply of energy through the night.
This might seem like a bit of a random tangent but it really isn’t – many of us wake up in the morning feeling sub-par but aren’t quite sure why. Often it comes down to factors in the environment or in your overall health like these and as we’ve seen, it should be relatively easy to solve them in many cases!
CBT for Getting to Sleep
Finally, if you struggle to get to sleep because you can’t stop your mind racing. Then address the way you are thinking about sleep. There’s a lot more to learn about CBT and it really is a fantastic tool but for now. All you need to know is that it involves changing the way you think about a problem.
In this case, you’re going to stop putting pressure on yourself to sleep. If you feel stressed that you’re not asleep. Yet then you’ll work yourself up and be far less likely to be able to drift off! Instead of getting frustrated, enjoy lying down to have a think/feel free from the pressures of the day. Even if you’re just relaxing, this will still offer you some recuperative benefit.
What you’ll find though, is that the moment you manage to enjoy ‘just relaxing’, you’ll fall asleep. Don’t force yourself to drift off, that’s an oxymoron; just get comfortable, enjoy the moment. And let your body take care of the rest when you really need to drift off.