How to get yourself out of bed in the morning, according to a sleep expert

Waking up in the morning can be a struggle during winter. [Photo: Getty]
Waking up in the morning can be a struggle during winter. [Photo: Getty]

Getting out of bed first thing is never easy, but this time of year makes it that much harder.

A lack of sunlight, combined with the frosty, sub-zero temperatures and, let’s face it, dwindling motivation levels and mood, means we stay in bed for 16 minutes longer during the winter months.

It’s also a time when more than a third of us (38%) find ourselves more likely to be late for work, and a fifth of us will be late to meet friends and family because we’re so attached to our mattresses, according to a survey conducted by Andrews Heat for Hire.

To avoid entering into a loving partnership with our duvets, we spoke to Neil Robinson, Chief Sleep Officer at Sealy UK, on the most pain-free methods to help you get up out of bed in this morning.

Rise with the sun – or cheat

Sunlight is crucial for controlling your body clock, explains Neil, which is why you feel rough when you wake up and head off to work in the dark – because you haven’t woken up naturally with the sunrise. Forcing yourself up while it is still dark can lead to a surge in your levels of cortisol – the stress hormone.

However, while adjusting your waking hours to the sunrise might not be so feasible, you can certainly cheat your brain. “Invest in a ‘sun rise alarm clock’ which mimics the sun rise by gradually increasing light levels in the room,” Robinson advises.

Quality over quantity

It stands to reason getting a longer sleep will make it easier to spring out of bed. But, according to Robinson, a successful wake-up has more to do with the quality of your slumber. “Having a longer, but more disturbed sleep will leave you feeling more drowsy and un-rested than a shorter, high-quality slumber,” he says.

Learn more about Britain’s sleep habits by listening to Yahoo’s ‘Britain Is A Nation Of…’ podcast, below:

In order to better your sleep quality, make sure you invest in a high-quality mattress and pillow, which provide the double benefit of ensuring you have a deeper sleep as well as waking up without aches and pain.

Also, banish phones, pets, and anything that could wake you up during the night from the bedroom.

Play music first thing

Make like a character in a movie and consider starting your day with a musical soundtrack. According to Robinson, playing music or listening to the radio in the morning will stimulate your brain and help you feel more awake.

“Choose music that starts gently and gradually builds, so as to avoid waking up too suddenly, which can causes an adrenaline rush and production of the stress hormone cortisol,” he advises.

Place your alarm clock far away

This classic trick forces you to get up and out of bed to shut off your alarm sign.

If you have your alarm clock in a location in the room that you can’t reach from your bed, then you’re forced to climb out of bed to turn it off. Therefore, removing that temptation to roll over and go back to sleep for those few extra minutes.”

Don’t press snooze

Many of us are all-too-familiar with our snooze button, hitting it multiple times before we leave our beds in the morning so we can get a valued few minutes more of sleep.

However, Robinson stresses this is a habit we need to beat. “This will actually make you feel worse when you eventually do drag yourself out of bed, as going back to sleep after hitting the snooze button prepares your body for another sleep cycle.”

Instead, he advises setting your alarm for “as late as possible” and using the aforementioned alarm clock across the room trick to keep the snooze button out of your reach.

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