How To Wake Up

Waking up is the process of coming out of sleep. It can be automatic for some, and a struggle for others. Some people will regularly sleep through a blaring alarm, whereas others are fine-tuned to wake up at the same precise minute every morning. We aren’t talking about having difficulty feeling wakened; we’re talking about that actual first moment you awaken which, for virtually everyone, is beyond one’s control.

No matter how much or little you sleep, you will eventually wake up on your own when your body experiences a change. Maybe it has decided it is sufficiently rested. Or maybe you’re feeling pain, or experiencing a strong urge to urinate. Many times, a sound will wake a person unexpectedly, for instance, a baby crying, lightning crashing, or a bull being castrated nearby. Even bright lights like the morning sun or someone using flash photography of your resting body can cause someone to awaken from the deepest of slumbers. Unless you die in your sleep, you will eventually wake up on your own.

Unless you have absolutely no responsibilities, you probably need to make sure you’re awake within a certain timeframe to allow yourself time to prepare for the following day’s events. Knowing before going to bed that you’re going to need to be awake at a certain time is key. Many people will use some sort of alarm, whether on a smartphone, a traditional alarm clock radio, or a phone call wakeup service. Some with hearing issues may even use a vibrating mechanism. By setting the alarm to sound at a given time, you can rest easy knowing that there’s a very good chance the alarm will function as expected.

As seen in the seventh season episode of Seinfeld titled “The Hot Tub,” all alarms fail at the same time causing Jean-Paul to miss the start of his marathon. The sick reality is that this isn’t remotely uncommon. Due to power outages, user error, or volume issues, an alarm may not sound when expected. Even one’s “internal clock” can be disrupted if normal sleeping conditions cannot be met. If waking up at a certain time is extremely important, like needing to catch a flight, a backup alarm is a great idea.

As mentioned, many people wake up at a particular time every day after years of repetition. Over time, the body can form that internal clock that subconsciously senses the time of day and jolts the body awake. This can be true for people used to waking up for work or school on a near-daily basis.

My Hot Take:
Though I frequently wake up on my own between 6:10 and 6:25am, it isn’t a guarantee, so my wife and/or I will set an alarm on our phones. As if that isn’t enough, we can also be assured that our young son will eventually wake us up with his cries. It is extremely unusual for me to oversleep. In fact, I can only think of a few times ever where I’ve slept well past my intended time. There have been times where I’ve hit the snooze button a couple too many times and gotten up a little later than intended to prepare for work, but never to the point where I was unusually late to the office.

To wake up at a certain time, set an alarm. Otherwise, you’ll wake up on your own eventually.

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