Alarm clocks have improved dramatically in the last 20 years, they were once a combination of clanging bells, flashing lights and electronic beeps that would take you from 100% relaxed to 100% awake in less than a second! Hardly the best way to start your day 🙂
Thankfully, there are more options now and many of them are far more gentle while still being effective. One solution that works with your bodies’ natural rhythm and cues uses gradual light and then sound to wake you. In a nutshell – the human body responds to light by releasing a hormone called cortisol that causes your body to wake up. The light only needs to make contact with your skin to increase production of cortisol and as the level of the hormone builds, your body naturally starts to wake.
For those of you with iPhones you can test it out using a free app called Wake Up – Lite*. It has a half hour build up of light followed by tweeting birds at the end of the cycle. If you rely on an alarm and wake before sunrise, it is definitely worth a try!
*You’ll need to leave the app running and have your phone on charge during the night. I always set my phone to “Plane” mode so that any emails or texts do not come through disturbing my sleep.