Wake Up On Time
Wake up
In one experiment, a Russian Ivan Petrovich Pavlov (1849-1936) rang a bell every time right before feeding a dog. After many times, even no food was given the dog drooled when the bell rang. That is aural stimulation. When we see a pickled sour fruit that we have eaten before, our mouth salivates even though the fruit is not eaten. This is visual stimulation. Any of the five senses can go through a process of stimulation to have the Pavlov's effect. So utilize it to help wake up on time.

Alarm clock with adjustable alarm time was patented by a French, Antoine Redier in 1847. Of course human beings have survived without these confounded noisemakers but now there is such technology, why not employ it?

This article talks about waking up on time than waking up early. How early is early? That is rather generic. Wake up on time is more focused. It means waking up by a targeted or alarm time at the latest.

Which type of becoming awake is preferred?
1) Become awake but do not get up. If one opens his eyes but he does not get up, that is not called wakeup.
2) Become awake and quickly get UP.

How many things that have been screwed up due to not waking up on time? Not waking up on time means not in control of own life. Waking up on time is the first thing in self improvement. It is because if the day is started correctly, one will be more into self improvement for the rest of the day. Waking up on time will always give a better day. Everyone knows the bad things of not waking up on time but it is still good to list some here:
1) Things will not be that smooth for the day if one does not do the first thing of the day right.
2) Feeling of poor-being, regret or frustration.
3) Time passes fast in the day.
4) Unhealthier body.
5) More things cannot be accomplished. It is like losing a thousand dollars.

There is no excuse for inability to wake up on time. When sick, the mind and body are weak so it may be alright to sleep in. But when healthy, there is really no reason to sleep in. If one is serious about life and everything he does, then he will not wake up late.

Having enough sleep is a basic factor to wake up on time. Usual bed time can be set but one can sleep early or later depending on his sleepiness. Do not waste time on the bed staring at the ceiling if unable to fall asleep yet. Everyone has his own sleep length although he sometimes needs more sleep and sometimes less. For example if five hours of sleep is enough for Mr. X, who goes to bed at eleven, he can set the alarm at five but still wakes up at four. Do not watch long TV show at night because even when already sleepy one still wants stay up to finish the show. A little self discipline is needed. If sleepy but still staying up, there may be such "I do not have enough sleep" voice in the head the next morning. Furthermore, staying up even if already sleepy certainly will decay the health. And the emotion next day may be affected by short of sleep. Do not resist drowsiness at night to do something. Instead just wake up on time the next morning to do it then. It is an illogical contradiction to resist sleepiness when supposed to sleep but to surrender to sleepiness when not supposed to sleep.

No matter what time the sleep is at night, still wake up on time everyday. Yes, including weekends and holidays. If there is insufficient sleep one night, sleepiness will come earlier the next night. So it is alright to meet up with a good friend and talk until late night. This kind of things does not happen every night. One should not ever negotiate with himself that if he does not have enough sleep one night, he has to wake up later the next morning. He will feel bad afterwards. The fixed wakeup time is not negotiable. In fact many fixed times in life are not negotiable. If work time starts at eight in the morning, can he tell the boss that he does not have enough sleep last night so he comes to work at nine?

Quick thoughts before lying down:
a) Think of waking up as something that does not need effort. Do not think of it as a big task. If one starts thinking about how to battle or struggle his way to wake up, he will sleep in. Example of such psychology is a footlog. When it is placed across a very shallow stream, one can walk on it very easily compared to across two tall buildings. Anyway that does not mean not to be serious about life. One can still be serious when he sees something as easy to achieve.
b) One should appreciate that he can still command his body to move.
c) If not being a busy person that always has something to do, think of something to do after waking up. If there is nothing in mind to do, most probably sleep-in will happen. What to do tomorrow morning? What is the personal interest? What about a little work that will have monetary incentive? There must be something to do. If really there is nothing then there is no need to wake up anymore, hehe. One lives because there is always something he wants to do, isn't he? If he is an employee, of course he needs to be in the company on time. Perhaps wakeup on time is still not specific enough so the focus can be kind of lost right after becoming awake, and falling asleep again. Wake up and so what? Further define personal meaning of wakeup.

Do anything as desired to cast away the sleep inertia. Examples of things that can be done:
1) Walk to the bathroom to wash face.
2) Do exercise like stretching or handstand. Workout or exercise oxygenates the body more and makes it awake.
3) Take a quick shower for the whole body or if the water is too cold, just for the lower body.
4) Walk out to buy breakfast. Messy hair early in the morning around the neighborhood should be alright.
5) Drink water.
6) Water the plants at balcony.
7) Eat two eggs.

Dawn is the moment when twilight starts to appear. Dawn is also called daybreak - the day breaks open so the eyes should also splits open. It is good to see starlight, moonlight and sunlight at the same time. Some say it is good for the eyes to see sunrise everyday. By that time, melatonin (sleeping hormone) production in the body should stop already due to the light. Even if one can still sleep when the bright skylight is shining on him, he may feel a little unwell after waking up.

Fix the alarm for the time before dawn. Do not choose the time after dawn. This is to avoid that kind of voice in the head: "It is already bright... it does not make much difference if I wake up now or ten minutes later..." There is one period in the year when the day breaks earlier. Use that period as a standard. For example if the earliest dawn of a place in the year is five ten, set the alarm at five or earlier all year long. Of course one can wake up earlier than the alarm time. For example if he becomes awake at four, then he can get up although the alarm is set at five. A time range can be set in mind that he must wake up if he becomes awake within that range, for example four to five.

Putting the alarm within the reach of hand is not that good. When really tired, alarm may be turned off without realizing it even the wakeup is particularly important for example having to catch up with a trip. Put the alarm near the bathroom or on the sink to remind of washing face.

Use an alarm clock that is loud and rings continuously until it is turned off. If desired, use two alarm clocks calibrated with synchronized time and will ring simultaneously. Alarm with snooze mode is not really good because it will make one whisper in the head to compromise the wakeup time. The next thing he knows is he has developed a bad habit of ignoring and sleeping thru the alarm. It does not matter what alarm tone is used as long as it can catch attention. One can choose military music that motivates morale or cheers footsteps. Try telephone alarm too as the mind is conditioned subconsciously for the whole life to "answer the call". And cock's crow is always a good choice.

The second the eyes are opened and it is time to wake up, just take a deep breath and spring up without second thought. Do not hesitate. By not waking up at the first moment of becoming awake, the body will be extremely tired when waking up later. Do not close the eyes again and pretend as if the eyes have not been opened. Do not still lie there and think of things. Any delay will make the voice in the head talk own self into sleep. "Another ten minutes" is a conspiracy. Some people will feel more tired (stiff shoulder) when they miss the first wakeup and only wake up ten minutes later. Sleeping a few minutes more may make one even harder to wake up due to procrastination effect. It gives a tired feeling. It is worse than sleeping in.

By the way breakfast should be finished before eight in the morning. It is because some say that time human digestive system is the most active.

After a few days, one may start to become awake right before the alarm rings. This automatic wakeup happens because the biological wakeup clock starts to function. Turn off the buzzer and feel proud of own self outrivaling it. When one gets used to it, he will wake up on time even one second before the alarm rings or when on rare occasion the alarm does not trigger. Continue using the alarm to build the Pavlov's effect and circadian rhythm.

There may be many reasons that some people have difficulty sleeping at night. If the night is hot and stuffy that it is hard to fall asleep, take a quick cooling shower for the whole body or just for the lower body. Generally to solve insomnia problem, one should:
1) avoid consuming anything that has caffeine.
2) avoid added sugar. It brings up sugar level in blood to an unnatural state.
3) not take sleeping pills. Do not mess up with the body chemicals.
4) exercise. Sweat out some energy. Do not do the exercise before sleep though.
5) not sleep in the day. If very sleepy, take a walk outside. If a nap is really wanted, do not lie down to avoid oversleeping.
6) avoid thinking about something complex such as work when about to go to bed.
7) again, wake up on time in the morning.

If after getting out of bed and washing face, one falls asleep again, that may be a symptom that he has health problem. He is not downright sick though because he can still carry on his daily job. Do not take that as an excuse to wake up late. Deal with it. One should know what is lacking for his health for example exercise or dietary fibre.

If having hearing problem, use a timer light or establish a mechanical system that can get attention when it is wakeup time. That is also for people that do not have hearing problem but will sleep thru the alarm.

Start doing it tonight! Do not be discouraged if the attempt tomorrow morning fails. It may be hard for the first few days. Once it has become a habit, waking up on time is easy. Consider it as an experiment like what Pavlov was doing. Come to think of it, one should also "wake up" on time from some "sleep" in life so that good opportunities in life will not be missed.
Proverbs 6:9 How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? when wilt thou arise out of thy sleep?
Posted: 2007-02-13; updated: 2015-08-03 by Ong Seng Aun.
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