What you and your brain need to know about hitting the snooze button – it’s not just a waste of time. Consider these facts about sleep and snoozing when you’re waking up tomorrow, and give yourself the chance for a better start every day.
“I’ll just hit snooze one more time.” Nine minutes, fifteen minutes… whatever the length of your snooze alarm, you’re both kidding yourself, and robbing yourself.
A full sleep cycle runs about 45 minutes, and partial cycles (like that snooze alarm) disrupt us in ways that are not only unproductive, but counterproductive.
The sleep (or snooze) you get after hitting the snooze button is actually worse than useless – those extra moments of dozing (or for many people, worry, rumination, or dread) don’t increase restful sleep, the kind you, your brain, and your body actually need. Instead, they just increase how lethargic you feel all morning.
What I suggest instead, if you aren’t quite ready to face your day full-on when the alarm goes off, is to use those nine minutes to set the tone of your nervous system for the day. Some ideas my patients have found to be helpful:
- gentle breathing exercises
- mindfulness practice
- easy yoga stretches
- a cup of tea or coffee
…all before you fall prey to checking your email or the news, so those don’t get to hijack you first thing in the morning.
Sleep and wake well!